On the evening of June 27th, “Immortal Stories from China”, the 11th concert of the NCPA “Sound of Summer Blooms” online series, was released as the first special performance of Chinese symphonic works since the NCPA launched online concerts. Conducted by conductor CHEN Lin, the concert was presented by pipa artist LI Jia and the NCPA Orchestra. As of 11 p.m. on June 27th, the concert had a total of 26.4 million views.
The first special performance of Chinese symphonic works since the NCPA launched online concerts
Before the concert, hostess ZHU Xun took the audience on a virtual tour of the Art Archive and Souvenir Shop of the NCPA. At the Art Resource Centre, she gave an introduction on the background and characteristics of the four pieces to be performed with conductor CHEN Lin and pipa artist LI Jia. Most pieces are anchored in Chinese folk music.
The concert was unveiled with BAO Yuankai’s representative work Chinese Sights and Songs. After that, L'Eloignement for string orchestra by CHEN Qigang demonstrated the perfect combination of Chinese folk song and modern Western composition techniques. Little Sisters of the Grassland, a pipa concerto co-created by composer WU Zuqiang, WANG Yanqiao and pipa artist LIU Dehai was interpreted by pipa artist LI Jia and the NCPA Orchestra. Ode to the Red Flag brought the concert to a climax.
The concert won great support from professionals and music fans
The concert won great support from professionals and music fans. CHEN Zhiyin, a senior editor and director of the Music Critics Association, Chinese Musicians' Association, said: "We have been telling Chinese stories and composing Chinese works by Western instruments and techniques. Chinese musicians have been walking on the path of discovery for a hundred years." In addition to praise of the professionals, netizens also left encouraging words, "Western instruments add extra exquisiteness and unique flavour to Chinese folk music", "It spreads the Chinese sound and let us experience Chinese culture", "It’s full of positive energy and the sincere love of Chinese people", "What belongs to the nation belongs to the world. Such a night!".
The concert was broadcast live to 51 countries and regions, including the UK, Germany, France, the US, Argentina, Australia, Philippines, Pakistan, Singapore, and Japan, as well as Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan, China. A French netizen said: "In such a difficult time, music is the best thing to unite us together. It’s cloudy in France, but the sun always rises. I want to say 'good night' to the Chinese friends. Thank you for such an amazing concert!" Aaqib Inam, a netizen from Pakistan, left his comment, "Chinese people are great. I love China. Love from Pakistan." An overseas Chinese from Canada said, "the music was so beautiful that it roused my homesickness. I have been to the concert hall of NCPA with the Canada’s National Arts Centre Orchestra. Thank you so much for live streaming this absolutely wonderful concert!"