NCPA Resident Opera Singers
NCPA Resident Opera Singers have staged in a number of performances. They have co-performed nearly 40 operas in collaboration with renowned artists at home and abroad, including famous conductors Zubin Mehta, Lorin Maazel, Valery Gergiev, Chung Myung-whun, ZHANG Guoyong, LÜ Jia, YU Long, LI Xincao, ZHANG Yi; celebrated directors Francesca Zambello, Giancarlo Del Monaco, Elijah Moshinsky, Hugo De Anna, Gilbert Devereux, CHEN Xinyi, CAO Qijing, ZHANG Jigang, LIAO Xianghong, WANG Xiaoying, LI Liuyi, TIAN Qinxin, YI Liming, etc. They have performed in operas including The Long March, FANG Zhimin, Visitors on the Snow Mountain, Rickshaw Boy, The Ballad of Canal, LAN Huahua, Jinsha River, Aida, Le Nozze di Figaro, Simon Bocanegra, La Traviata, Carmen, Lucia di Lammermoor, Roméo et Juliette, etc.
Besides performing in a number of opera performances, resident opera vocalists have been actively participating in activities such as concerts, education and outreach, contributing to the cultivation of Chinese opera audience and the popularization of refined art.
NCPA Drama Ensemble
NCPA Drama Ensemble
Artistic Director: PU Cunxin
Leader: GUAN Bo
Deputy Director: YUAN Jinhong
Deputy Leader: YU Tiantian
Administrative Coordinators: WANG Yiying, SUN Zhongyue
NCPA Drama Ensemble was established on July 28th, 2016 and the renowned Chinese actor PU Cunxin was invited to be the Artistic Director. After rounds of screening across the country, 20 members were selected out of a number of professional actors to become the first and the second batch of actors for the team. Having received professional trainings on lines, performance, vocal performance, and body shaping, they finally appeared on the stage of NCPA. As another resident performance troupe following the China NCPA Orchestra, the China NCPA Chorus, and the NCPA Octet, the NCPA Drama Ensemble will focus on rehearsing dramas and participating in other NCPA productions.
NCPA Drama Ensemble has taken part in several NCPA productions, including The LEI Family,the Royal Architects, Returning Home on a Snowy Night, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Jane Eyre, The Tragedy of Hamlet,Prince of Denmark, King Lear, The Merchant of Venice, Look West to Chang'an, the Birds, etc., and the Ensemble is to present more exciting works in the future.
China NCPA Orchestra
China NCPA Orchestra is the resident orchestra of the National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA), Beijing. Established in March 2010, the orchestra consists of highly accomplished musicians from around the world, who perform in more than a dozen opera productions presented by its home venue each year as well as in ballets and regular orchestral concerts in its own season. With a notably busy schedule, the young ensemble has fast established itself as one of the most adventurous and dynamic orchestras in the country. LÜ Jia took up the post of Chief Conductor in February 2012, succeeding CHEN Zuohuang, the current Conductor Laureate, NCPA’s then Artistic Director of Music as well as a founder of the orchestra. In January 2017, upon CHEN Zuohuang's retirement, LÜ Jia started serving as NCPA's Artistic Director of Music and the NCPA Orchestra's Music Director.
The NCPA Orchestra demonstrates an abiding commitment to the highest levels of artistic excellence and takes pride in its long-term collaborations with the finest musicians of our time. Artists associated with the orchestra in the past few years have included Lorin Maazel, Zubin Mehta, Valery Gergiev, Myung-Whun Chung, Christoph Eschenbach, Fabio Luisi, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Leif Segerstam, Gunter Herbig, Hannu Lintu, Shao-Chia Lü, TANG Muhai, ZHANG Xian, ZHANG Guoyong, ZHANG Yi, Rudolf Buchbinder, Stephen Kovacevich, Khatia Buniatishvili, Behzod Abduraimov, Alexei Volodin, Lang Lang, Yuja Wang, CHEN Sa, ZHANG Haochen, Gautier Capucon, WANG Jian, Li-Wei Qin, Kyung-Wha Chung, Vadim Repin, Siqing Lu, NING Feng, Alison Balsom, Sabine Meyer, LI Biao, Placido Domingo, Leo Nucci, Renee Fleming, Liang Li, HE Hui and CHEN Yang, among many others. Lorin Maazel worked closely with the orchestra before his passing and praised the musicians for their “amazing professionalism and great passion in music”. After working with the orchestra in a series of concerts, Christoph Eschenbach also declared it as “one of the finest orchestras in Asia”.
In the first few years since its establishment, China NCPA Orchestra has become one of the leading ensembles in the country both on stage and in the pit, gaining critical acclaim for its performances in NCPA’s many opera productions. To date they have played for over 60 new productions, including not only classical repertoire such as Tristan and Isolde, Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Aida, Otello, Nabucco, Tosca, Turandot, Le nozze di Figaro, Don Giovanni, Eugene Onegin, but also newly commissioned works including Rickshaw Boy, The Long March, FANG Zhimin, The Jinsha River, Visitors on the Snow Mountain and The Dawns Here Are Quiet. In its own orchestral concert season, the orchestra has consistently presented creative and diverse programmes. Their performance of the Ring without Words with its creator, Lorin Maazel, was released on SONY Music worldwide, the only recording the great maestro ever made with a Chinese orchestra.
Another important field of work that the orchestra has explored extensively in the short period of time since its establishment is the creation and promotion of contemporary music. Having presented the Chinese premieres of major works by John Admas, Toru Takemitsu, et al, it gave the world premieres of more than ten substantial new orchestral works commissioned by the NCPA, written by composers from across the globe including Qigang Chen, Jiping Zhao, Michael Gordon, Augusta Read Thomas, Kalevi Aho, and Joby Talbot. It has also played a major role in the NCPA's annual Young Composers Programme, providing a unique platform nurturing the next generation of Chinese composers.
The NCPA Orchestra has flexed its wings on the international stage, receiving widespread international praise for its performances at the Kissingen Summer Music Festival and the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival and concerts in many cities in Germany, as well as in Sydney, Singapore, Seoul, Daegu, Abu Dhabi, Taipei and Macau. The orchestra undertook its first North American tour in 2014 and the revisiting tour in 2017, where it performed at Carnegie Hall, Chicago Symphony Center, Davies Symphony Hall and other major venues in the US and Canada, under the baton of LÜ Jia. Musical America praised its “joyful confidence and youthful strength”. Concerto Net described it as “a polished, first rate ensemble”.
With its commitment to educational and outreach activities, the orchestra has presented a series of Weekend Matinee concerts at its home venue. With specially selected programmes and accessible ticket prices, these have become extremely popular with Beijing audience new to classical music. In addition, the orchestra frequently initiates wide-reaching educational projects in association with educational institutions across the city.
The 19/20 season has “Cadenza” as its theme, featuring over 30 concerts conducted by LÜ Jia, ZHANG Yi, Christoph Eschenbach, Jukka-Pekka Saraste, Markus Stenz, Tung-Chieh Chuang, ZHANG Xian, Myung-Whun Chung, Daniel Stabrawa, VIadimir Fedoseev, Manfred Honeck, LI Xincao, Ryan Bancroft with soloists Jian Wang, Paul Meyer, Gilbert Audin, Johannes Moser, HE Ziyu, George Li, Michaela Kaune, Kian Soltani, Radovan Vlatkovic, Vadym Kholodenko, Khatia Buniatishvili and many others. Anne-Sophie Mutter and WU Man, both as this season's Artist-in-Residence, will lead a number of concerts as well as educational projects. The orchestra will also perform in eleven NCPA opera productions including Les Pêcheurs de Perles, Le contes d'Hoffmann, The Long March, La Fanciulla Del West, Journey to Reims and Song of Youth.
China NCPA Chorus
China NCPA Chorus is the resident chorus of National Centre for the Performing Arts.
China NCPA Chorus was established on December 8th, 2009. WU Lingfen, the famous conductor, serves as its chorus master. As the professional artistic performing group that belongs to the highest palace of performing arts, the chorus adheres to the NCPA's guiding principle of "for the people, for art, for the world" and is recognized as a vigorous professional chorus with infinite potential.
During the process of its growth, names of many most outstanding artistic masters in today's world have been observed, including famous directors Francesca Zambello, Giancarlo del Monaco, Hugo de Ana, CHEN Xinyi, CAO Qijing, LIAO Xianghong, WANG Xiaoying, YI Liming, LI Liuyi, TIAN Qinxin and YANG Xiaoyang; famous conductors Lorin Maazel, Zubin Mehta, Daniel Oren, Myung-whun Chung, Jaap van Zweden, Antonio Pappano, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, YAN Liangkun, YANG Hongnian, LÜ Jia, ZHANG Guoyong, LI Xincao, ZHENG Jian and YANG Li; famous singers Plácido Domingo, Leo Nucci, Inva Mula, Juan Pons, Brandon Jovanovich, Francesco Meli, YAN Weiwen, DAI Yuqiang, WEI Song, Warren Mok, YUAN Chenye, LIAO Changyong, ZHANG Yalun, ZHANG Liping, Dilbèr, SUN Xiuwei, HE Hui, YANG Guang and Liang LI. The masters have given high appraisals to the chorus. The world famous tenor Domingo once said, "I am honoured to cooperate with these gifted young artists"; the late conductor Lorin Maazel said, "It is a Chorus of passion"; conductor Daniel Oren, who was excited after rehearsal, said, "This is the chorus that has the best sound I have ever heard. Young as they are, they are better than many of the choruses in Europe"; conductor Antonio Pappano said, "This is a youthful and passionate chorus that has been well trained to sound wonderful and harmonious".
As one of China's leading choruses both in the orchestra pit and concert hall, the NCPA Chorus brings to life fresh and vivid operatic characters one after another with their lavishly expressive singing and passionate theatrical performance, playing an active role in pushing forward the artistic production of National Centre for the Performing Arts. Since its establishment, it has participated in more than 50 operas by NCPA such as opera commissions Xishi, A Village Teacher, The Chinese Orphan, The Beautiful Blue Danube, The Ballad of Canal, Rickshaw Boy, Visitors on the Snow Mountain, Sunrise, The Dawns Here Are Quiet, FANG Zhimin, The Long March, Jinsha River, LAN Huahua and Effendi, and Chinese and foreign classic operas such as The White-Haired Girl, The Red Guards on Honghu Lake, Turandot, Carmen, La Traviata, L'Elisir d'Amore, Tosca, Die Fledermaus, Der Fliegende Holländer, Un Ballo in Maschera, Lohengrin, Les Contes d'Hoffmann, Otello, Nabucco, Le Nozze di Figaro, L'Italiana in Algeri, Il Trovatore, Cavalleria Rusticana & I Pagliacci, Norma, Don Pasquale, Aida, Rigoletto, Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Eugene Onegin, Andrea Chenier, Der Rosenkavalier, Simon Boccanegra, Samson et Dalilah, La Gioconda, Tannhäuser, Macbeth, Rusalka, Lucia di Lammermoor, Tristan und Isolde, Falstaff, Thais, La Figlia del Regimento, Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Romeo and Juliet, La sonnambula, Don Giovanni, La fanciulla del West, Les Pecheurs de Peries. Its artistic attainments have won favourable comments from the insiders and audiences.
Apart from operas, the chorus has also planned and performed in many large-scale vocal works and theme concerts including Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, Mahler's Second, Third and Eighth Symphonies, Verdi's Requiem, and Concert to Commemorate the 110th Anniversary of HUANG Zi's Birth, the opera concerts such as William Tell, Don Juan and many politically significant state level shows including large-scale music and dance epic "Road to Rejuvenation", "Victory and Peace – Evening Gala" to Commemorate the 70th Anniversary of the Victory of the World Anti-fascist War and the Counter-Japanese War of the Chinese People, Evening Gala for the G20 Hangzhou Summit, the Gala Commemorating the 80th Anniversary of the Victory of the Long March, the gala "Millennial Road" for the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation and Evening Gala for congratulated on the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China. By means of the concerts, the chorus makes more audiences to understand more of its charm and the artistic spirit of its unremitting efforts.
As the singing envoy of zeitgeist, the chorus has always been paying attention to fostering audience, supporting and participating in the artistic education and popularization activities of NCPA. It actively plans and participates in NCPA's Weekend Concert series, Classic Art Lectures series, and appears in more than 40 public benefit events held in schools, communities, enterprises, militar camps and hospitals every year to help popularize elegant art, so as to improve people's aesthetic taste. Meanwhile, the chorus commits itself to introducing NCPA's artistic productions and outstanding classic works to audiences at home and abroad. It participated in the tour of NCPA's opera Visitors on the Snow Mountain in seven provinces and municipalities across China, opera commission FANG Zhimin's tour in Jiangxi Province, opera The Long March’s tour in Nanjing as part of the 3rd China Opera Festival and has visited foreign countries like Singapore, South Korea, Japan and China’s Hong Kong and Macao for exchanges. The chorus's performances have been critically acclaimed by the audiences and local counterparts. Especially in 2015, the chorus went with NCPA to Italy for a 17-day tour of the opera Rickshaw Boy to a great success, demonstrating the rich musical expression of the chorus.
Beijing, in the new century, is full of the prosperous atmosphere of elegant art. The young artists of the chorus devote their most vigorous and dynamic youth to the cause of China's opera, and strive for dream and art!