Caixin
Oct 22, 2021 03:16 AM
CHINA

Pianist Li Yundi Reportedly Detained on Prostitution Allegation

Li Yundi
Li Yundi

Chinese pianist Li Yundi was detained by Beijing police on suspicion of patronizing a prostitute, domestic media reported Thursday evening.

Police detained a 39-year-old male surnamed Li and a 29-year-old woman after receiving a public report on alleged prostitution. Both detainees confessed to the allegation, police in the Chaoyang district of Beijing said in a brief post on the official Weibo social media account.

While the police statement didn’t identify the people involved, major news outlets including state-backed people.com.cn named Li Yundi in the reports.

Another Weibo post by Beijing police also offered a hint. With a photo of a piano keyboard, the official account declared Thursday night: “It’s true the world is more than black and white, but black and white must be clearly distinguished. Absolutely no mistake..."

Dubbed the “Prince of Piano” in China, 39-year-old Li is one of the best-known pianists in the country. He won the Frederic Chopin international piano competition in 2000 at the age of 18 — the youngest and the first Chinese winner in the competition. He also served as a judge for the competition in 2015.

Born in Chongqing, Li began piano studies at age 7 and was trained at the Shenzhen Arts School and Germany’s Hochschule für Musik und Theater Hannover. Li has issued fifteen CDs worldwide on Deutsche Grammophon and EMI Classics, according to Steinway & Sons.

In recent years Li has become a frequent guest on China’s popular TV entertainment shows.

Contact editor Han Wei (weihan@caixin.com)

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