Originally from Beijing, J. Cecilia Wu (AKA: Wu Xiao Ci) is a scholar, composer, audio engineer, vocalist, and multimedia artist. Cecilia earned her Bachelor's of Science degree in Fashion Design and Engineering in 2000. Upon winning the MTV Asian Beat Band Compitetion with her band, Universal Music identified her talent and signed her as a music producer and songwriter in Hong Kong. Her professional career continued with EMI Music and Taihe Rye Music. A frequent commuter between Beijing and Hong Kong ever since, Cecilia has been involved in virtually every aspect of music production from songwriting and studio engineering to talent identification, Artist & Repertoire, and management.
During her years in the music industry, Cecilia wrote 70 songs for many popular artists in the Greater China Area. She produced and released her first album of original music, Clean Your Heart, in 2010 which was published by Taihe Rye Music. In 2013, Cecilia obtained her Master’s degree in Music, Science and Technology at the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA) at Stanford University, where she focused on computer-assisted composition and audio engineering.
Currently, Cecilia is a Ph.D. candidate in Media Arts and Technology (MAT) at the University of California, Santa Barbara. She is also a lecturer at UCSB's College of Creative Studies. Her research focuses on composing multimedia arts with written music, studio engineering, sound design, improvisation, computer based live interactivity, and computer generated graphics. Her compositional vocabulary includes embodied sonic meditation, dynamic vocal processing, gestural music, and soundscape creation. In her dissertation, she focuses on developing and evaluating design strategies and music theory in novel DMIs using body gestures as input and control mechanisms, which implement interactive intelligent tracking systems that capture and identify the body movement of a vocalist. Her artistic and scholarly work embodies the Tibetan cultural knowledge, which contributes to promoting cultural diversity and augmenting underrepresented cultures. As a world traveler, her creative foundation comes from studying Buddhist philosophy and the human condition.
As a scholar, she is a Regents Fellow of the University of California as well as a winner of the UC Central-campus Humanities Fellowship Competition. As an audio engineer, she received a two-year-long graduate grant award from the Audio Engineering Society Educational Foundation (AESEF) during 2013‒2015. And as a multimedia artist, she received the “Young Alumni Arts Project” Grant Award from Stanford University. As a musician, she received an award from the California State Assembly for being a positive role model in sharing Chinese culture. Cecilia's music has been performed in China, Southeastern Asia, the United States and Europe.