Orchestral maneuvers

Updated: Jan 14, 2022 By Chen Nan China Daily Print
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Conductor Li Xincao, who became the president of the China National Symphony Orchestra in August. CHINA DAILY

"We will perform the concerts without a conductor, which will be a testament to the trust and skill of the musicians," Lyu says.

He will also perform a concert paying tribute to Tchaikovsky under the baton of conductor Zhang Yi, performing the composer's Violin Concerto in D Major, Op 35 and Manfred Symphony Op 58.

According to Li, each new performance season of the orchestra introduces new musicians and composers to its audiences. This year, conductor and composer Jin Chengzhi will be commissioned to write a new piece for the orchestra, which will be premiered on Nov 12 at Beijing Concert Hall by the chorus of the China National Symphony Orchestra. Jin, born in Wenzhou, Zhejiang province, learned to play the piano during his childhood and participated in local school choirs. In 2007, he joined a conducting program at the China Conservatory of Music in Beijing and learned choral singing and songwriting. A year later, Jin was transferred to the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, where he and some schoolmates founded the Rainbow Chamber Singers in 2010. Now, the group has become one of the best-selling choirs in the country.

According to Jin, the new piece will be named Moments of Life, which will depict the daily lives of ordinary people.

The China National Symphony Orchestra was established in 1956 and was created from the former Central Orchestra.

Four Chinese conductors who worked with the orchestra-Li Delun (1917-2001), Han Zhongjie (1920-2018), Yan Liangkun (1923-2017) and Qiu Li (1926-2008)-are honored with the title of "permanent conductor laureate", paying tribute to the elder-generation Chinese musicians.

"All of these conductors helped and supported the younger generation of Chinese musicians and we want to show our respect to them," says Li Xincao, adding that when he first took the baton as a conductor to perform with the China National Symphony Orchestra after he graduated from the Central Conservatory of Music in 1994, Li Delun was like a mentor and offered him lots of help.

During the new season, the orchestra will also perform classic Chinese musical works.

On May 15, a concert will be held to commemorate the 80th anniversary of Yan'an Forum on Literature and Art, where Chairman Mao Zedong gave a celebrated speech, at the former revolutionary base of Yan'an, Shaanxi province, in 1942. Music programs including The Spring Festival Overture by composer Li Huanzhi, and Yellow River Cantata by composer Xian Xinghai, will be performed by the orchestra and its chorus under the baton of four conductors-Tan Lihua, Li Xincao, Wang Linlin and Lin Daye.

The orchestra will also tour nationwide with more patriotic music works, to celebrate the 1942 forum.

A concert featuring music works by late Chinese composer Zhu Jian'er, who is known for his music pieces such as Sing a Song for the Party, will be staged on Oct 22 at Beijing Concert Hall, marking what would have been his 100th birthday.


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