The Global Interplay Project : Beijing and Shanghai, China

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SUN CHANG  Born to musician parents (father bassoonist, mother singer) in 1985 in Hohhot, the capital of Inner Mongolia autonomous region in China, Sun Chang began his music education at an early age: piano at the age of three; harmony at the age of five; counterpoint, musical form and orchestration at the age of eight. At nine years old, the prodigy began to write pieces for piano and even performed his works at concerts the following year. At the age of eleven, Sun Chang was enrolled in the middle school affiliated to the Shanghai Conservatory of music where he began formal composition training. With a remarkable 17 scholarships on his honors roll and a proven record of academic excellence, Sun Chang was exempted from all auditions and was offered a place for the undergraduate program at the Shanghai Conservatory of music, majoring in both composition and conducting. He is currently under the tutelage of Professors Shirui Zhu and Guoyong Zhang respectively. During the years 2000 and 2001, Sun Chang was selected to participate in a global composition activity, “Millennium composition: sonic convergence”, which had 27 young composers from China, Sweden and the United States involved. Sun Chang's works include “Barrenness” (guitar solo), “Pray” (string quartet), “Two Dimensions” (two pianos or two harps), “Sonata” (violin solo), “Two Periods of Spring and Autumn” (trumpet in B and piano) and “Six Linking Loops” (for two oboes). Besides the piano, Sun Chang is also skilled in playing the harp, guitar, and Gu Zheng (a large Chinese instrument with 21 strings).

listen : Piano Suite
Butterflies and Bikinis
Afternoon Tea with Mark
Under You, Under the Sun
JEAN Y. FOO was born in 1982 in Singapore, and began her music training in piano and theory at the age of 5. She started studying music composition at the age of 19 with Professor Xu Zhenmin. Familiar with both Chinese and Western Music and Instrumentation, Jean auditioned and was accepted into the Bachelor’s Program for Composition at the Central Conservatory of Music (CCOM), Beijing, China in 2003. She is currently under the tutelage of Dr. Hao Weiya. A recipient of the Singapore National Arts Council Music Bursary Award (Overseas) for 4 consecutive years (2001-2004), Jean's work “Silvers Beads?” was commissioned as the opening piece for the debut performance of Singapore's Contemporary Duo (Pipa and Piano). Other works include “Piano Suite: Music for the Masses”, “5-2-5” (for set instrumentation), “Motoko Dance” (MIDI), a string quartet and various vocal and instrumental works. Jean is currently Assistant to Dr. Hao Weiya. She is Music Editor for the World-Entourage Action Musical “Terracotta Warriors”, produced by Dr. Dennis Law and for a National Telecast of a documentary on Tibet. Jean has had the privilege to study with accomplished musicians, such as Prof. Hacene Larbi (composition), Prof. Ami Maayani (polyphony & orchestration) and Prof. Wang Fujian (Chinese music orchestration). She has had master classes with Prof. Samuel Adler and Felix Baumann.

LIU HUAN  Born in 1983 in the City of Tangshan in Henan Province, Liu Huan began piano playing at a young age. In 1999, she was accepted, based on an outstanding audition, to study composition at the Middle school affliated to the Tianjin Conservatory of Music. Since 2002, she has been pursuing her undergraduate degree for composition at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, under the tutelage of Professor Qin Wenchen. Her previous tutors include Professor Bao Yuan and Tang Jianping. Liu Huan is also studying pipa playing during her university years. Her academic works composed at university include: “Through the Clouds, Come the Moon, Flower Shadow” (Piano Solo); “Qing” (Guqin Piece); “4 different spaces of Colours” (Chamber Work); “Sunrise Scenes”; “String Quartet No. 1” and other ensemble works. Her work for Piano Solo “Through the Clouds, Come the Moon, Flower Shadow” was awarded the Distinction Prize a competition, “4 different spaces of Colours” (Chamber Work) was selected to be performed at the 2003 Beijing Modern Music Festival. She received the 3rd prize for her work “Sunrise Scenes” at the 2004 Yan Huang Cup Competition.

LIU KUN  Born in Xi'an in 1984, Liu Kun started playing the piano from a young age. In 1998, she started studying composition. Enrolled in 2003, she is currently doing her undergraduate degree at the Composition and Conducting Department at Shanghai Conservatory of Music. Her interest in Chinese traditional music grew as she embarked on her course of music Composition. Liu seeks to create her own musical language and style through fusion of the spirit of Chinese traditional music and Western reasoning and logic.

HUANG LEI is a 22-year-old composer from the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. Since childhood, Huang has always been fond of music. He began to learn to play the ERHU (a kind of Chinese traditional musical instruments) at the age of and performed two successful recitals at the Shanghai Music Center when he was six. At ten, he entered the affiliated primary school of the Shanghai Conservatory of Music to learn music systematically under the supervision of well-known ERHU player and educator, Professor Wang Yongde. At thirteen, with outstanding academic scores, he was accepted into the affiliated middle school of the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. During the middle school period, Huang studied composing and piano alongside his major in ERHU performance. In 2000, Huang was tested and approved by both the composition and traditional instrument departments of the Shanghai Conservatory of Music to undertake a double-major undergraduate course in composition and ERHU playing. He was under the tutelage of Professor He Zhanhao, Wang Yongde, Xu Jianqiang, Zhu Shirui, Yang Liqing, Jia Daqun and Xu Mengdong etc. During his five-year study at the university, his musical works have been frequently performed and related works, papers and comments have also been frequently published on musical journals such as “People Music”, “Music Creation” among others. Having studied the Chinese national instrument for nearly 20 years, Huang is truly in love with national traditional music. At the same time, long-term study and research into western composing skills have made him even more intrigued by its profound history and advanced skill system with myriad variations. He believes that “Music not only belongs to the nation, but also belongs to the world”, which is to say that music composition itself should have generality as well as peculiarity. Neither one of these two elements should be absent because it takes two to make real good music. Huang’s basic composing concept is to combine western advanced composing skills with traditional Chinese national music features to create new music, as well as embodying elements of creativity, breakthrough, advance, conventionality and reasonability.

LU MANG was born in 1979 to a music family. She started formal music training at an early age, beginning with piano at 3 under the guidance of Mr. Shi Shu Cheng. In 1997, she auditioned and was accepted into the undergraduate course of the Composition department at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. Lu has always maintained academic excellence: achieving top results in composition and in other subjects. A frequent recipient of awards and scholarships, Lu was highly recommended for a place at the conservatory's Composition Masters Degree course without audition in 2002. In 2005, her thesis “Analysis of 'Octet' by Edgard Varèse” was well received and with a top place in composition, she is now doing her Doctoral Degree in Composition at the conservatory. Lu has been a student of Professor Tang Jianping since her undergraduate studies.

JIA YAO Born in 1983 in the Northwest Xinjiang Autonomous Region of China, Jia Yao studied compositon with Professor Gao Weijie during her university years. She studied at the Composition Department of the China Conservatory of Music (CCM) Senior High School from 1997 to 2000 and went on to study at Composition Department of China Conservatory of Music from 2000 to 2004. Her Piano Piece received the 3rd prize of the CCM’s Xinshengdai Composition Competition in 2002 and she received the First Prize in the CCM’s Xinshengdai Composition Competition in 2004 for the piece “Beijing Opera”.

JING XU  Born in 1985, Jing Xu auditioned and was accepted to study composition at the Sichuan Conservatory of Music in 2002. He is under the tutelage of Associate Professor Yang Xiaozhong. Xu Jing's musical talent has earned him many accolades and prizes: “Yumeiren” for Tenor (3rd Prize, 2003 Vocal Composition Competition of the Sihucan Conservatory of Music); “Yao: for 5 instruments” (2004, West Area Sun River Prize); “Viewing Xianhou Block from 4 angles: for 6 players” (2nd Prize, 2005 Chengdu Sun River Prize), which was also presented at the 2005 Open Master Class of the Beijing Modern Music Festival, where he received high compliments from Professor Samuel Adler of the Julliard School of Music.


Lunch together

Beijing group

Huang Lei