Singer-songwriter Joyce Jonathan, 21, is not your typical pop artist. She released her debut album, Sur Mes Gardes, in her native French, and included four remakes of her most famous songs - in Mandarin. Sunday Young Post spoke to Jonathan via e-mail to find out more about her intriguing connection with all things Chinese. Sunday Young Post: What do you think the most important thing is for a musician in establishing global appeal? Joyce Jonathan: The language is very important in addressing other cultures, but I think the music ultimately surpasses everything. Music is a universal language. It is important for me to translate some of my songs into Mandarin because it is a beautiful language. During my concerts, especially at the one in Hong Kong, I will have the occasion to sing both in Mandarin and in French. I hope the music can overcome our language barriers and bring us all together. SYP: I read somewhere that currently the population of French speakers grows by 100 every month in Hong Kong. Why do you think Hong Kong is so popular with French people? JJ: Hong Kong is a very attractive city from the French perspective. I had the opportunity to visit Hong Kong five years ago, when I was 16, and I immediately fell in love with this city. It is impressive and [has a] warmth. SYP: What motivated you to release Chinese versions of some of your tracks? JJ: I studied Chinese when I was in high school six or seven years ago, and my parents speak it because they lived there and have worked extensively in China. In the 80s, my mother ran a travel company specialising in visits to China and she had created a tourist agency in France called Home of China about 15 years ago, which offers lots of cultural tours in China. My father is an architect, who graduated from Tsinghua University. They met in China, so the fact that I was born was partially due to China! And then I chose Chinese because it is a language which I find very beautiful and very musical. Since my childhood [I've been] surrounded by China - physically by Yuanmingyuan engravings and photographs on the walls of my home. My parents have always had Chinese friends who came over to visit us. I had the opportunity to go to China several times. The first time, I was 10 years old and I went to Beijing. In China, I feel good because since I was a kid, my parents told me about this country, and I hear them talk in Chinese. SYP: Le French May Festival is going on right now, any chance we'll see you in Hong Kong soon? JJ: Yes, I'll be there June 12 at the Sheung Wan Civic Centre's theatre as part of Le French May Festival. During my visit to Hong Kong five years ago, I realised this was a city that I really liked. I knew Beijing, but Hong Kong is very different. This is the first time I will both travel and give a concert. I think it's [great] to travel for music, and I'm very excited that this will be happening for me in Hong Kong.