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Song was born in Guzhang County, part of Xiangxi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture, Hunan to Miao ethnicity. and studied in the department of music and dancing at the Central Institute for Nationalities in Beijing, after which she studied at the China Music College. Her father died when she was 12, and she is the oldest daughter. In 1991, she joined the Chinese People's Liberation Army Naval Song and Dance Troupe as a national first-class singer. As of 2009, she is a non-combatant Rear Admiral in the Chinese Navy.
In the recent years, she has been received the following awards:
- 1st Place Award of China Vocal Contest of Minority Nationality
- Golden Award of MTV Contest of CCTV
- Golden Award of the Nationality Group of “Most favorite singer” of CPB of China
- 1st Award of “Starlight Award” of China National Broadcasting and Television Department
- The Award of Golden Disc of China
- Award of Outstanding Contribution of Chinese National Vocality of CCTV
- Award of Club for the opera of China
- Artist of Moral and Ability, by China Ministry of Personnel and China Literature Association.
- Award of Charity in China by China Department of People’s Affairs
Discography and international activities
Song Zuying has published many personal albums and videos, and she has published Happy Life – Photo Album of Song Zuying, Real Passion in the Music World – Selection of Songs by Song Zuying and Voices of a Hundred Years – The Classics of the Songs in the Chinese Films over a Century.
In recent years, Song Zuying has visited Europe, Australia, the U.S., Canada and Southeastern Asia for the art interaction with China Art Delegation. In the World Cup held in Korea in 2002, Song was invited to sing representing the Chinese in the large scale vocal concert. In December 2002, as the culture ambassador for the 30th anniversary for the establishment of the diplomatic relation between China and Australia, she held the vocal concert “Prosperity” in Sydney successfully. In November 2003, she held the personal vocal concert in the Golden Hall in Vienna successfully.
She has held solo concert performances at international venues such as Sydney Opera House in 2002, Vienna Golden Hall in 2004, and John F. Kennedy Centre for the Performing Arts in 2008 were held for the political elites in those respective countries for diplomatic purposes.
Song Zuying performed a duet with tenor Plácido Domingo at the 2008 Summer Olympics closing ceremony in Beijing. She also performs regularly on the Chinese Spring Festival Gala; in 2009, in addition to her own song, she sang a duet with Jay Chou.
On May 1, 2010, the day following the opening ceremony of the Expo 2010, in Shanghai, Zuying joined tenor Andrea Bocelli, singer Jay Chou, and concert pianist Lang Lang in a concert titled Charming China at Shanghai Stadium, in front of an audience of 80,000 people. The China Philharmonic Orchestra accompanied them under the direction of its artistic director Yu Long.
On June 5, 2012, Song once again performed with Bocelli, Yu Long and Lang Lang in the East Meets West concert at London's Royal Albert Hall.
A representative of 9th NPC, she is now a member of 10th CPPCC, a standing member of the China Youth Union, an executive member of Chinese Women's Union, and a the member of China Literature and Art Union and the agent of China Musician Association.
Alleged affair with Jiang Zemin
According to an article in Asia Sentinel, it has long been rumoured in China that Song was romantically involved with former president Jiang Zemin and owed much of her career to support from him. Whilst both Song and Jiang were married to other people, Song later divorced her husband. The pair were introduced to each other by Vice-Admiral Wang Shouye, who is currently serving a life-sentence for corruption.
In 2004, a Beijing scholar was arrested for making allegations about the affair.
- firstname.lastname@example.org. "People's Daily Online - Song Zuying". English.peopledaily.com.cn. Retrieved 2012-05-27.
- Andrea Bocelli on stage with Chinese girl for Shanghai Expo, People's Daily Online, April 30, 2010 article.
- Size matters at Shanghai Expo 2010, The Times, April 30, 2010 article.
- Glamour of China, City Weekend.
- Expo showcases music, art and culture, People's Daily, April 30, 2010 article.
- Asia Sentinel
- "A Corruption Trail Leads to Jiang Zemin". Asia Sentinel. Retrieved 2012-05-27.