Lang Lang signs to Sony

Chinese pianist extraordinaire Lang Lang has signed a long-term contract with Sony Classical.

Sony Music Entertainment is rumoured to have paid $3 million to secure him, though it will not comment.

Lang Lang’s first album on Sony Classical will be a live recording of his upcoming recital at the Musikverein, Vienna. The performance will also be available in high-definition Blu-ray DVD format.

Lang Lang talks of ‘sharing a vision’ with Sony: ‘This is why our relationship is not just about making great recordings; it’s also about technology and its future.’ Lang Lang will work with Sony on new technological initiatives, including opportunities for 3D video and web-based music education.

Sir Howard Stringer, Chairman, CEO and President, Sony Corporation said: ‘We look forward to collaborating with Lang Lang to create innovative and unique entertainment experiences utilizing his musical genius and technical savvy.’

This long-term music and media agreement expands Lang Lang’s existing relationship with Sony, for which he acts as a worldwide brand ambassador. Bogdan Roscic, President of Sony Classical, says Lang Lang’s open-mindedness to media and new technology 'has made him one of the most important ambassadors for the art form itself, bringing classical music to audiences which musical gifts alone, even as prodigious as his, could not reach in today's culture.’

27-year-old Lang Lang rose to stardom ten years ago when he was called for a dramatic last-minute substitution at the ‘Gala of the Century’, in which he played with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. He has become a national icon and inspiration to China’s 40 million piano students.  Lang Lang joins Sony from Deutsche Grammophon, for which he recorded since 2003.

Lang Lang and Sony are demonstrating their support for the people of Haiti by donating funds to UNICEF’s relief effort. Lang Lang will give a benefit concert on 21 March and Sony Classical will release a recording by Lang Lang of Chopin's Polonaise in A-flat Major No.6 Opus 53 'Heroic' as an exclusive iTunes download.