Justin and Jiang Yongchun (Right)
"I am going to visit Ningbo Museum for the 88th time before leaving the city." Pipe organ performer Justin Berg is currently working as instructor of English for Academic Purposes at the University of Nottingham Ningbo China (UNNC), where he is also a PhD student in Applied Linguistics.
With his assistance, a 1908 pipe organ was transported from the United States to Ningbo in 2018. A few days later, he finally finished its assembly to allow beautiful music to flow from his fingertips. His story was made into a documentary shot as Opus 839 by Ningbo local Xiaoxing (Adele) Han. This production won the Silver Award in the Non-Broadcast, General-Documentary: Individual of the 42nd Telly Awards.
"Whenever I am in difficulties, I go to the Ningbo Museum to relax." Recently, a journalist of the Ningbo Evening News joined Justin’s 88th tour of Ningbo Museum.
Justin is from Michigan, USA. He has been playing the pipe organ since childhood, earning undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in Pipe Organ Performance and Music History respectively. He learned about Ningbo 13 years ago from a Ninghai (a county in Ningbo) student, who described the city as a fantastic place to work and live in. Thus, his interest in Ningbo was aroused, and he began looking for work here. Soon after, he left for Ningbo.
After working as a music teacher at Ningbo Xiaoshi High School for four years and then at Ningbo Lihuili High School for a short time, Justin took up working at UNNC, where he applied for a doctorate. Due to recent job changes, he is about to leave for the United States and will not return soon.
"My favorite artifact is exhibited in Ningbo Museum." Justin was referring to an eight-edged pot (Yue celadon ware) from the Tang Dynasty (618-907) in the demonstration hall on the second floor. With the rotation of those collections, the original one was temporarily stored in the warehouse and replaced by a photo card. "There’s another one over there, but it's smaller." Justin pointed out another pot in the side showcase.
"I was fascinated by the Tang Dynasty and its cultural relics before coming to China. I have visited museums in Xi'an and got impressed by their gold and silver artifacts. However, I still prefer this celadon pot, particularly with its color and shape." Justin said in Chinese.
"I am also into a bowl from the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368)." That's an imitated Jun-glazed bowl, Tiedian Ware, discovered at Ningbo's Yongfengku site. There are restoration marks on the bowl, but its color is warm and soft.
"I adore this architecture designed by the renowned architect Wang Shu, who combined Chinese traditional elements with modern features." Strolling down Ningbo Museum makes Justin feel at home.
Because of his frequent visits, Justin became a good friend with Jiang Yongchun, security guard of the exhibition hall on the third floor. "My Chinese name is Jiang Shiting. We share the same last name."
After getting acquainted with each other, Jiang invited Justin to his hometown in Jiangshan Town, Yinzhou District of Ningbo, treating him to Ningbo Cuisine. "He loves traditional Ningbo food, like seafood, stinky tofu, and pickled wax gourd." Jiang told the journalist. He was sad to hear that Justin was leaving. "He might come back in two to three years. I hope he will come to visit the Museum again once back in Ningbo," Jiang said.