The Taiwan Philharmonic. Photo by Tat Keng Tey.

“The Taiwan Philharmonic timed its first visit to Washington, D.C., aptly,” writes Charles T. Downey in Friday’s (4/21) Classical Review. “The group, which opened its U.S. tour last week with a chamber concert in New York, performed in full force Wednesday night at the Kennedy Center Concert Hall at a time of increased concerns about a potential invasion of the small island republic by China. The sea-centered program, presented by Washington Performing Arts, struck a note of international cultural diplomacy … The main goal, co-sponsored by the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office, was to place a spotlight on the nation’s musical treasures. Music director Jun Märkl, familiar to local audiences for his guest appearances with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, opened the evening with the world premiere of Ebbs and Flows, a new work by Ke-Chia Chen. Born in Taiwan, she has lived in America for two decades and serves on the faculty at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia…. The Taiwanese-born violinist Paul Huang … took center stage as the soloist in Max Bruch’s Scottish Fantasy … The program’s oceanic theme came full circle” with Mendelssohn’s Hebrides Overture and Debussy’s La Mer. The Taiwan Philharmonic also performed in New York City and Naperville, Illinois.