Presenting the world premiere of Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Zhou Long’s new orchestral work Men of Iron and the Golden Spike 铁汉金钉– a symphonic oratorio, honoring the extraordinary contribution of Chinese railroad workers to the building of the Transcontinental Railroad in the American West. Some 20,000 Chinese laborers built the rail line through the Sierra Nevada mountains and across the Nevada and Utah deserts, enduring terrible extremes of winter and summer and other brutal working conditions. In commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the completion of the railroad in 1869, the Center for East Asian Studies and the Chinese Railroad Workers in North America Project at Stanford University and the US-China Music Institute of the Bard College Conservatory of Music have commissioned this work to shed light on the laborers that made the railroad possible. Music by Zhou Long with lyrics by Su Wei.
The evening will also include the Zhou Long’s new piece Classic of Mountains and Seas 山海经 – concerto for orchestra, which draws inspiration from the famous Chinese mythical text describing the ancient world, “Shan Hai Jing.”
Performed by Bard College’s, The Orchestra Now, conducted by China Now Music Festival Artistic Director Jindong Cai, with chorus and soloists.
Part of the 2nd annual CHINA NOW MUSIC FESTIVAL: China and America — Unity in Music
Presented by the US-China Music Institute of the Bard College Conservatory of Music with the Center for East Asian Studies and the Chinese Railroad Workers in North America Project at Stanford University.