Hua Chenyu is a Chinese mandopop and rock singer and songwriter. He is equally popular by another name, HuaHua. A native of the Hubei province, he developed an interest in music quite early in his life. He learned to play the flute and the piano, and at the age of 12, he penned his first song. He garnered national fame after becoming the champion at Hunan TV’s singing contest ‘Super Boy’ in 2013. He is widely recognized for his powerful vocals, dramatic stage performances, and talent in composing. He is often regarded as one of the most influential singer-songwriters under 30 in China. In September 2014, he put out his debut album ‘Quasimodo's Gift’, which was a massive hit and topped the Jingdong Top 100 Annual Sales Chart (Music). He then released his second album, ‘Aliens’, in 2015. In September 2014, he performed in his first personal branded concert, the “Mars” concert. In March 2017, his third album ‘H’ was released. Despite being active in the industry only for a few years, he has won numerous awards for his music, including four Top Chinese Music Awards.
Childhood & Early Life
Born on February 7, 1990, in Shiyan, Hubei province, China, Hua Chenyu was raised by his father, Hua Fuxiong, after his divorce from Hua’s mother when Hua was two years old.
His introduction to music was through the flute, which he started playing at the age of six. When he was in the fifth grade, he began learning the piano. Hua composed his first song after he turned 12 years old.
After he completed middle school, he enrolled at the Fine Arts High School in Wuhan. In 2010, he successfully took the college entrance examination and began studying at the Wuhan Conservatory of Music, pursuing degrees in pop music vocal performance. During this period, he was affiliated as a vocalist with a college boy band called Conseer, accumulating precious stage experience.
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In 2013, in his final year at the conservatory, Hua auditioned for Hunan TV’s singing contest ‘Super Boy’. On his debut appearance on the show, he performed one of his original tracks, a lyric-less song.
His unique expressions during the performance earned him the nickname “Martian” and negative feedback from two out of the three judges. However, the third judge sang a lyric-less song with him and was impressed by his talent, claiming that the young singer “is a genius”.
He eventually received positive votes from all three judges, progressing to the next round. Hua virtually breezed through the next few rounds before winning the competition. Afterwards, he was offered a recording deal by Mainland Chinese label EE-Media. He accepted the deal and put out his debut single, ‘Me and Myself’, in September 2013. He also went on the national Super Boy tour with other contestants.
In May 2014, he revealed to the media and his fans that he wanted to hold his first brand-named concert, the Mars Concert, in September 2014. Tickets were quickly sold out, prompting the organizers to put together another show on the following day. On 6 and 7 September, the concert took place at Beijing Mastercard Center.
On September 18, 2014, Hua put out his first solo full-length album, ‘Quasimodo's Gift’. Comprised of ten tracks, it opened at #1 spot on the Jingdong Top 100 Annual Sales Chart (Music). It brought him several awards, including the ERC Chinese Top Ten Award for Best Album, Chinese Music Radio Award for Best Composition, and Golden Song for ‘Let You Go’.
Hua put out his vocal experimental song ‘Cancer’ on April 27, 2015. He held his second Mars concert on 1 August, with two additional shows on 31 July and 2 August. On 18 December, he released his second album, ‘Aliens’. Three of its songs, the title track, ‘The Mayfly’, and ‘Kings and Paupers’ topped the Billboard China V Chart at different points in time.
In 2016, Hua embarked on the Mars Concert tour and performed in Beijing on 2 July, Shanghai on 21 August, and Shenzhen on 6 September. The 2017 Mars Concert was held at Beijing Cadillac Arena on 13 and 14 October. On 8 and 9 September 2018, he hosted the 2018 Mars Concert at the Beijing Bird Nest National Stadium.
He released his most recent album, ‘H’, on March 17, 2017. During the making of this album, he was studying at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts, USA.
Film & TV Appearances
In 2014, he appeared in Zoe Peng’s musical microfilm on his debut album ‘Quasimodo's Gift’. He has served as a judge on ‘The Next’ between 2016 and 2017. From 2017 to 2018, he was associated with the musical reality show ‘The Coming One’. He has also served as an emcee in the 2019 series ‘Ace vs Ace Season 4’.
Family & Personal Life
Hua previously dated the keyboardist of his school band and has stated that they acted like an old married couple rather than two teenagers in love when they were together. At present, he is rumoured to be dating singer-songwriter Gloria Tang, also known as G.E.M.