Chia-Jung (Venus) Tsai was born and raised in Taichung City, Taiwan. Thirty years ago, this bright 6-year old was handed her first violin. Her parents sacrificed what little extra income they had to put her in private lessons. When most other kids would be outside playing, Venus was inside practicing, sometimes up to 10 hours per day. After just one month with her violin, she performed in her first recital alongside other students who had already been playing for years.
Venus soon demonstrated a swift mastery of the piano, as well, under the tutelage of Yuh-Yun (Phoebe) Wu. And not surprisingly, she immediately excelled at singing opera, the most challenging of vocal genres. Szu-Chao Chen helped her hone that natural gift and it was clear to everyone that Venus possessed rare, remarkable talent in multiple areas.
Her parents enrolled her at the Qing Shui Secondary School of Music at age 9 where she flourished. Venus graced the stage with her first solo violin performance at the age of 12 with a live orchestra. After graduation, she attended Tainan National University of the Arts where she earned a Master’s degree in Music Composition & Violin. To this day, she keeps in touch with several of her past tutors and is incredibly thankful for their inspiration and instruction.
When asked which performance impacted her most in her early years, Venus lights up and shares about her experience in 2004 at Germany’s oldest classical music festival, “Musikalischer Sommer in Ostfriesland”. She auditioned when she was 16 years old, earned a solo performance there and was first violinist for the world-renowned Vladimir Ashkenazy. That led to an opportunity to tour in France as a festival soloist and orchestra leader with violinist Laurent Korcia. These experiences helped to cement her confidence and shape her future.
In addition to being gifted musically, Venus is a stunning beauty. In her 20’s, she spent time modeling with the likes of L’Oreal, Audrey Lingerie and other top-name companies in Taiwan. But according to her, “It’s more important to me that people see my inside, not just my outside.”
In 2014, Venus competed on the popular television show, “China’s Got Talent” and won the title of Most Talented Violinist in China. Adding to her growing portfolio, she charmed audiences on the high seas as the headline entertainment for several top cruise lines. Combining her talents as violinist, vocalist, pianist and composer, she wowed audiences with her fiery performances. “When I’m on stage, that’s my heaven. I feel like a different person. I think it’s what heaven will feel like,” she gushes. She has performed at The Venetian in Las Vegas, appeared in an action-packed Yamaha commercial, has impressed celebrities at various VIP events and played with many of the world’s leading orchestras.
Three years ago, Venus was on a flight from Taiwan to Shanghai. An American man, whom she playfully describes as “shining and unique,” sat in the seat next to hers. She and Jared (fondly known as “Joe”) struck up a conversation and the rest is history. They married that same year and she joined him here in Mill Creek.