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US-China Music Institute Presents Music from China: East Meets West, A Concert Of Contemporary Works For Chinese And Western Instruments

US-China Music Institute Presents Music from China: East Meets West, A Concert Of Contemporary Works For Chinese And Western Instruments

On Sunday, January 28, at 3:00 pm. Bard’s Fisher Center for the Performing Arts hosts a celebratory concert to launch the Chinese Music Development Initiative, a new collaboration between the US-China Music Institute of the Bard College Conservatory of Music and the Central Conservatory of Music (in Beijing, China). Admission is $10 suggested donation. For tickets call the Fisher Center box office at 845-758-7900 or visit fishercenter.bard.edu.

The Orchestra Now collaborates with the Chamber Orchestra of the Central Conservatory in a concert featuring six new works by Chinese composers, all using a combination of Chinese and Western instruments, with renowned soloists Yu Hongmei (Erhu), Zhou  Wang (Guzheng), and Zhang Qiang (Pipa).

Music from China: East Meets West, Contemporary Works for Chinese and Western Instruments 

Chamber Orchestra of the Central Conservatory of Music

  • Aria for Gongs with Ensemble of Western and Chinese Instruments        Guo Wenjing  (1956– )
  • Concerto Grosso for Ensemble of Western and Chinese Instruments       Chen Xinruo
  • East West II: All Glare Tempered, All Dust Smoothed                                   Zhang Shuai

Intermission

The Orchestra Now, Jindong Cai, conductor

  • Spring and Autumn         Zhang Qiang, Pipa                                               Tang Jianping  (1955– 
  • Forlornness                       Zhou Wang, Guzheng                                     Zhou Yanjia   (1934      
  • From “The Great Wall Capriccio”                                                         Liu Wenjin  (1937–2013)  

            3. Memorial of the Loyal Souls   

            4. Vision of the Future       Yu Hongmei, Erhu           
                                             

The Chinese Music Development Initiative was formally established at a signing ceremony in Beijing in December.  This new initiative, managed by the US-China Music Institute of the Bard Conservatory, offers the first comprehensive program for the study and performance of Chinese music in the United States:

·      A new undergraduate degree program in selected Chinese instruments—erhu, pipa, and guzheng —at the Bard Conservatory of Music, with faculty provided by the Central Conservatory and Bard. The Chinese instrumental performance degree program will be the first to combine the professional study of traditional Chinese instruments with the liberal arts. Students will be accepted for enrollment starting in the fall of 2018. The application process will begin in January 2018.

·      An annual Chinese Music Festival commissioning and performing music from contemporary China, to take place on the Bard Campus and at a major New York City venue. The inaugural festival will take place in the fall of 2018.

·      Seminars and scholarly conferences on Chinese music, art, and social development, to be held in the United States and in China. The first conference will be held at Bard on March 30–31, 2018 on the topic, Harmony and Power: The Role of Music in the Cultivation of the Literati in Ancient China

·      An annual summer academy on the Bard campus for high-school age students, featuring an orchestra of Chinese instruments. Participants will spend 2 ½ weeks on the Bard campus for individual lessons, English lessons, master classes, chamber music, ensemble playing, orchestra rehearsals, and performances. The first Academy will be held August 9-26, 2018.

“This agreement is a milestone in Bard College’s international engagement,” said Bard President Leon Botstein. “Our partnership with the Central Conservatory will result in deeper connections with China’s vibrant musical life and rich heritage.”  

“The Central Conservatory of Music and Bard Conservatory have taken the lead in opening the Chinese culture in foreign conservatories,” said the Central Conservatory President Yu Feng. “This innovative step has historical significance in the development of Chinese music in the West. Our cooperation with Bard College, one of the finest liberal arts colleges in America, with a rich history of 157 years, sends out a clear Chinese voice to the world that we have entered into a new cooperation mode and a new stage through the integration of music and culture exchanges,” Yu added.

Bard Conservatory Director Robert Martin noted, “This is the culmination of years of work building relationships with the music world of China, including a tour of the Conservatory Orchestra to China in 2012.  This agreement is a major achievement of our new US-China Music Institute, led by the distinguished conductor, author, and educator Jindong Cai, and a wonderful enrichment of the life of the Bard community.”

Institute director Jindong Cai commented, “More than 400 years ago, the Italian Jesuit Matteo Ricci presented a Ming Dynasty emperor with a Western musical instrument, planting the seeds of Western music in China. Now we at Bard hope to make a similar contribution, deepening the development of Chinese music in the West. I am sure it will not take four centuries!"

The collaboration between the Central Conservatory and the Bard Conservatory will be overseen by President Yu Feng of the Central Conservatory and Director Robert Martin of the Bard Conservatory of Music. The partnership will be strengthened by bilateral faculty appointments: President Yu Feng will have a faculty appointment at the Bard Conservatory, and Bard President Leon Botstein will have a faculty appointment in the Central Conservatory. Hongmei Yu, chair of the Traditional Music Department of the Central Conservatory, will have a faculty appointment in the Bard Conservatory, and Jindong Cai will have a faculty appointment in the Central Conservatory. 

The Initiative will be managed by a committee led by Jindong Cai and Hongmei Yu, with Hongzhu Liu, director of the Central Conservatory’s Office of Foreign Affairs, and Associate Director Frank Corliss of the Bard College Conservatory.

For inquiries and information, consult the website uschinamusic.bard.edu.

 

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