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Tan Dun Brings Together Peking Opera with Piano
   2016-11-02 09:58:28    CRIENGLISH.com      Web Editor: Xu

Grammy-winning Chinese composer Tan Dun has recently presented his concerto Farewell My Concubine in downtown Beijing.

It is a new endeavor that Tan Dun has achieved by utilizing Piano and Peking Opera Soprano in one show.

Both Peking Opera actress Xiao Di and pianist Ralph van Raat feel pleased of being part of this creative output.

Yang Yong has more.


'Farewell My Concubine' tells a tragic love story between Xiang Yu, a prominent general during the fall of the Qin Dynasty in ancient China, and his consort Yuji.

Using a concert to present the story, Tan Dun prefers to embody Xiang Yu with piano, which, in Tan Dun's eyes, is the most universal instrument.

"I use the piano to portray King Xiang Yu and his unparalleled valiance and the soprano to portray an ancient beauty, his concubine Yuji. The concert, which was designed to paint the tragic tale, was hoped to excite the audiences with an unprecedented encounter between musical and theatric elements from the East and the West."

Unfolding in five continuous sections, 'Farewell My Concubine' creates an exciting synergy between traditional Chinese art forms, ranging from dance and music to the raw beauty of swordplay and martial arts.

Xiao Di, director of the Mei Lanfang Arts Institute and leader of the Liaoning Experimental Peking Opera Troup, portrays the role of Consort Yuji.

"Farewell My Concubine was first created by Mei Lanfang in 1926. The art of Mei Lanfang often features innovations to opera practices. It's a valuable opportunity for me to portray a totally renewed, overwhelming version of the concubine Yuji."

In addition, the award-winning pianist Ralph van Raat joined Xiao Di on stage. Ralph van Raat's music tries to convey Xiang Yu's tragic and heroic morale where he chooses death instead of loosing his noble integrity.

Tan Dun also conducted the Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra setting up a music background behind the duet of opera artist and pianist.

A world-famous conductor, Tan Dun uses his creativity to help foster the cultural diversity around the globe.

For CRI, I'm Yang Yong.

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