Director of the U.S.-China Music Institute of Bard College Conservatory of Music Jindong Cai (1st L, Rear), composers Chen Yi (2nd L, Rear), Zhou Long (3rd L, Rear) and other guests attend a panel discussion in New York, the United States, on Oct. 20, 2018. The inaugural season of the China Now Music Festival is under way in New York, presenting seven world premieres by some of the well-known Chinese composers in the 21st century. A preconcert panel discussion was held on Saturday at the China Institute. (Xinhua)
NEW YORK, Oct. 20 (Xinhua) -- The inaugural season of the China Now Music Festival is under way in New York, presenting seven world premieres by some of the well-known Chinese composers in the 21st century.
The 2018 China Now Music Festival is presented by the U.S.-China Music Institute of Bard College Conservatory of Music in collaboration with Central Conservatory of Music (CCOM) in Beijing, and it is dedicated to promoting an understanding and appreciation of music from contemporary China through an annual series of concerts and academic activities, according to the institute director Jindong Cai.
The festival for its debut run has as its theme "Facing the Past, Looking to the Future: Chinese Composers in the 21st Century." All concerts feature the Bard college's renowned The Orchestra Now conducted by Jindong Cai, also artistic director of the festival, and Chen Lin, a professor in CCOM's Music Conducting Department.
"Western classical music is developing in China at phenomenal speed, but just as exciting is the freshness that Chinese composers bring to the Western world," said Cai. "With the China Now Music Festival as our looking glass, we hope to bring people and cultures from East and West together through music."
The opening concert, at 8:00 p.m. on Friday at the Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York State, includes world premiere of one work by a composer from CCOM. The concert also premieres Chen Yi and Zhou Long's Humen 1839 and Ye Xiaogang's My Faraway Nanjing for cello and orchestra in the United States.
The second concert, which will be held at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday in the Lincoln Center, focuses on how Chinese composers have looked into the past. The program confronts three significant events in Chinese history: the first Opium War of 1839-42, the Nanjing Massacre of 1937, and what is now known as the "sent-down youth" movement during the Cultural Revolution of 1966-76.
The Carnegie Hall concert, at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, will look to the future, with a program consisting entirely of world-premiere compositions by CCOM's composition faculty.
A preconcert panel discussion was held on Saturday at the China Institute in New York City. The festival artistic director Cai and Chinese composers Zhou Long and Chen Yi shared their thoughts on the historically-minded works featured during the three day event.
The festival is part of Bard's partnership with China's Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, through its five-year Chinese Music Development Initiative.