The news that Fang Zhao, the deputy editor of "New Voices in Symphonic Composition" was in Muzhou recording at Odd Music Company spread fast within the Muzhou music scene.
The fastest to react were students of the Music Academy who were interested in the symphonic genre. Many skipped classes and rushed over to Odd Music Company.
Thus, on an afternoon where there was no sheep-herding competition, many cars appeared at the entrance of Odd Music Company.
Odd Music's security guards did not think much of it. Recently, there had been a lot more people coming to the recording studio. Today was just a little more than normal. However, they quickly realized more and more people were coming and they were asking the same question: "Where is Fang Zhao?"
Who is Fang Zhao?
They were just in charge of the company's security and knew nothing about the music scene. They might have known some popular singers or superstars, but not much of others in the industry.
It was only when a supervisor in the company told them that a rather impressive person had come.
In the large waiting hall, the three members of Wheat Dish Studio had ran in front of Fang Zhao.
Earlier, when Shi Duo had rushed in and glanced over, Zuo Yu's professional instincts had been placed on alert. He was ready to obstruct the three of them when Fang Zhao waved his hands, signaling not to.
"Greetings, Teacher Fang, we are year four student from Muzhou Music Academy."
The three of them handed Fang Zhao their student IDs. Ding Xiaotao and Jiang Hang passed over the books in their hands, flipped open the cover, and bashfully asked, "T-teacher Fang, could we have your autograph?"
After thinking for quite a bit, Ding Xiaotao had settled on addressing him as "teacher." Since he had imparted knowledge to them, they would call him "teacher."
Fang Zhao smiled at the three of them, took the pen and books, and proceeded to sign them.
"We are working on our composition right now, blending symphonies with electronic music, but we have encounter some problems; could we consult you?" Jiang Hang asked.
"Go ahead," replied Fang Zhao.
Jiang Hang spoke about the process and some of his thoughts about blending the sounds for their composition
"Did you have a general plan?" Fang Zhao asked.
"Yes, yes! Just that, when we listen to it, something does not sound right, as if it was not blended properly."
"Can I take a look at the scoresheet?"
"Sure! Sure!" Jiang Hang handed over the scoresheet that was full of amendments. He was not worried that Fang Zhao would copy their score. This was the Fang Zhao—would he even need to copy their messy and half-completed song scores?
However, looking at the piece of paper full of corrections, the three of them felt a little embarrassed.
"How about letting me tidy it up first and show you a brand new copy after all the amendments? This copy does not look good," Jiang Hang asked.
"No need." Fang Zhao studied the scoresheet in his hands seriously. Although this scoresheet was messy and the paper was full of markings and corrections, it showed the number of times they had tried to improve their draft. Fang Zhao could see what the three of them were thinking from it.
"Lend me the pen," Fang Zhao said.
"Sure, free free to use it!" Ding Xiaotao hurriedly fished out from her bag and handed it over to Fang Zhao.
Fang Zhao used the pen and circled out a few places. He proceeded to analyze it and tell them his opinions.
Jiang Hang and the other two listened attentively. They realized that Fang Zhao not only talked about the scoresheet, he could also speculate their thought processes through the amendments. He also accurately pointed out the points in their general plan where they had felt something was wrong and gave them a few reasons. This way, they could finish the rest by themselves.
As Fang Zhao was explaining to them, others in the waiting room also curiously watched. Upon hearing "Teacher Fang," some guessed whether it was the Fang Zhao that they knew. When they saw him signing on the copy of "New Voices in Symphonic Composition," their suspicions were confirmed.
"Is it really Fang Zhao?!" someone cried out.
Someone else from another genre had a blank look on his face. "Who is Fang Zhao? Is he famous?"
"Probably some rich master from an aristocratic family. He even has a bodyguard."
"Not necessarily. Who knows, he might be a celebrity."
"I have never seen him among any Muzhou stars."
"A foreign celebrity?"
"All this for a foreign star?" They looked down on the behavior of the bunch of young people trying to chase a celebrity.
Those who did symphonic genres could not put up with it any longer.
"You guys do pop music, right? It's normal not to know him. Now only those who do symphonies and New Era electronic music would know the name Fang Zhao. Have you heard of 'New Voices in Symphonic Composition'? He was a contributor and subeditor. Yesterday, I think a well-known musician said that symphonies and electronics would bring about a new wave of music. Just take a look at all these people sitting there. All of them have a booking for the symphony recording studio."
A slightly older person asked, "Are you talking about Yanzhou Silver Wing Media's Fang Zhao? The one that composed the '100-Year Period of Destruction,' received an invite from Fiery Bird, and helped great master Xue Jing compile 'New Voices of Symphonic Composition,' that Fang Zhao?!" Even if they did not have interest in the symphony genre, a while back, the book had been all the rage within the community, so they would still know of it.
"No wonder I felt that he looked familiar! I also want his autograph!"
"Wait for me, let me inform everyone in the chat group."
Therefore, Zuo Yu watched as a bunch of people came over. There were still others that rushed over upon receiving the news. In a moment, the waiting hall became crowded.
"Hello, I'm from Qingcheng University's arts group. Recently, I have been studying the style of symphonic structures..."
"I'm a student from Muzhou Music Academy too..."
"I'm from XX company..."
Zuo Yu observed everyone that came close. He could use his arms to block off the nearest people, but as there were too many, even if Zuo Yu had more limbs, there was no way he could block off everyone in the surrounding area.
"Boss, I feel that we should..."
Zuo Yu wanted to leave the place when he saw a middle-aged man in a suit head over. The people he brought along cleared a path. "Teacher Fang! Teacher Fang, I am Si Wai, deputy CEO of Odd Music. The company has prepared a room for you to rest." Afterward he addressed the crowd, "Everyone, please do not worry. Later on, Odd Music Company will provide a chance for interaction."
Recently, the company's symphony studio was overbooked every day. The higher-ups had naturally paid attention and understood the reason. Of course they knew what the name "Fang Zhao" implied.
This was a chance to raise the company's reputation!
All of Odd Music Company's departments had started to move. They had also increased the number of security guards at the entrance and spent money to engage temporary workers from a protective services company. Even their deputy CEO, Si Wai, had personally come out to invite Fang Zhao.
Fang Zhao also knew that staying here was not a good idea. After signing a few more books from people beside him, he returned the pen to Ding Xiaotao.
"Pardon me, I have to leave for a bit."
Fang Zhao had never thought that something like this would happen. However, he was not intimidated by the scene that unfolded as he followed the deputy CEO and left the waiting hall. They arrived at a lounge for distinguished guests, and he realized there were people waiting inside.
There were five people in total. Three were top executives from Odd Music, and the other two were the Principal of Muzhou Music Academy and his granddaughter, who coincidentally happened to be recording a song today.
The principal had brought his granddaughter to his good friend's company to do a recording and had never expected to have such a great opportunity. But having met quite a few great masters in the industry, he was not like the bunch of rowdy youngsters who were so stirred up.
After the customary introductions, the principal finally stated his true objective. "Young Teacher Fang, are you interested to come to Muzhou Music Academy to give a lecture?"
Half an hour later, Odd Music Company opened a large hall capable of fitting more than a thousand people. In the past, this place had been used to demonstrate their newest models of sound recording equipment and installations. The hall was a place for promotion and publicity, and now it being used to house a temporary meet and greet session.
Fang Zhao would answer questions for one hour, and after that, there would be an autograph session.
Before leaving for the meet and greet session, Fang Zhao made a call to Duan Qianji and told her about the situation here and how he would be cooperating with the Muzhou Music Academy's principal, who would arrange a place for Fang Zhao to lecture. As there were way more interested parties for his lecture then seats, they had come to a decision that the class would be broadcast online as well. At Muzhou's side, it would be an exclusive broadcast by Muzhou Music Academy. As for Yanzhou, Fang Zhao decided to leave it to Silver Wing to arrange the broadcast. Other continents were having discussions to stream the broadcast at the moment.
Duan Qianji was very happy when she received the news and immediately got her staff to set up the frequency for the broadcast as well as announce the news of Fang Zhao's lecture and post the details online.
After a series of orders had been handed out, Duan Qianji sat down in her own office and browsed through the discussions online as she chuckled to herself. "He really went out to expand his profession indeed."
Xue Jing had been invited all over the world to lecture due to the release of "New Voices in Symphonic Composition." As Fang Zhao was contracted to Silver Wing, he did not have complete freedom, and due to matters that he had to attend to, he had not gone along with Xue Jing. This time, Fang Zhao had been caught in Muzhou. Having received the news, Xue Jing was rather supportive of Fang Zhao personally lecturing and contacted him right away.
"When the time comes for your lecture, there will surely be a lot of industry seniors, but you don't have to be nervous. Just take it like how you were discussing with me and say whatever you wish to say. I have spoken to a few old friends in Muzhou. They will not post any tricky questions and will help you when there is a need to..."
In a tone of a old senior looking after the younger generation, Xue Jing exhorted again and again.
When Xue Jing finally finished, Fang Zhao said, "Thank you. I don't get nervous."
"Hey, when you are standing there with a thousand pair of eyes glued to you, can you still be so sure? When is your lecture?"
"So fast? Don't you need to prepare?"
"There is no need. I have something I to attend to now."
"You little—never mind, don't put too much pressure on yourself for your first class."
"I don't feel pressure."
The next day, when Fang Zhao left the residence the school had arranged for him, there was already somebody waiting for him to send him to his lecture.
The place where the lecture would be held was a communication center. On most days, professors and masters with high reputations would give reports or lectures there. It was rare that the speaker today was a young person who was of a similar age to students of the school.
Muzhou Music Academy's principal picked out ten questions from the students suggestions and went backstage to see Fang Zhao sitting there watching a sheep-herding competition.
Was he watching the video to relieve stress or was he born senseless? the principal thought to himself.
When it was about time, Fang Zhao stepped into the hall and walked up the stage. He calmly scanned the hall that was filled to the brim, briefly gave an introduction, and went straight to the main topic.
Fang Zhao's was not the plain and simple kind of teaching method, yet he was able to use simple words to make the questions more penetrating. He also used a few famous Muzhou songs as examples. Even people who had never come into contact with the symphony genre could mostly understand what he was saying. Fang Zhao's examples were not just limited to Muzhou songs; he used songs from other continents as well, which made viewers of the live broadcast feel involved.
Oh? To think it could be used like that?
Wow, you can blend this sort of sound? Who knows, I might be able to use it in my own compositions!
How did I never think of this?
How does he know so much?!
Those present at the lecture or watching the broadcast felt as if their hearts were deeply stirred.
The formless manner of Fang Zhao's words and actions carried some pressure. The student leaders sitting in the first few rows fidgeted in unease.
The arrangement teacher also straightened his back. He kept feeling a little nervous and wondered what was up? When he was giving lectures, he would not feel anything. Now, he was all tensed up just listening to a lecture, weird!
In the hall that could fit more than a thousand, the front ten rows were filled with student leaders, teachers, and other interested Muzhou citizens of reputable fame. The students were seated behind, and many more that were unable to grab a spot were watching the live broadcast online.
The academy's forums were also having heated discussions.
"I finally know why Fang Zhao rose so high despite being just two years older than us. Take a look, everyone, wherever he stands, that aura... Tsk tsk, reminds me of my form teacher back then."
"To actually reveal everything, isn't he even the least bit afraid that, once others learn his methods and techniques, they will trample down on him?"
"Do you know what some industry insiders call Fang Zhao? 'Big Fool Fang!' It came about when Fang Zhao would not keep his experiences and techniques to himself and was willing to share it with everyone. However, today, after watching Fang Zhao's lecture, I feel that Fang Zhao is not one who doesn't know how to maximize benefits. It is more like he doesn't care and isn't afraid. Impressive!"
Those that had previously doubted Fang Zhao's ability and those that had previously questioned him had one thing on their minds as they watched the broadcast: The style of a master.
Xue Jing was in Huangzhou after being invited to lecture, but that did not stop him from watching the live broadcast. A few of his friends beside him were surprised. "Tsk, Old Xue, this fellow speaks even better than you!"
Xue Jing was not the least bit angry—rather, he sounded gratified. Beaming, he said, "Yesterday, when he told me he didn't get nervous, I did not believe him. Now I understand. I feel this little fellow is meant for this profession!"
At Shanmu farm, Su Hou was taking a break from the training and scrolling through his news feed. He realized the top news story mentioned Fang Zhao.
"To think that he would become popular before me!"
Hearing Su Hou, Wu Yi walked over. He was amazed as well. "To think that Fang Zhao was so famous? He seems really impressive. Many well-known Muzhou great masters went to his lecture? That means that Fang Zhao is considered a great master too?"