US-China Music Institute Director Jindong Cai describes the conception and creation of a major new work for orchestra and chorus, Men of iron and the Golden Spike by Zhou Long, celebrating the Chinese railroad workers of the American West. Part of the 2nd annual China Now Music Festival, the newly commissioned work will be performed at Carnegie Hall on October 1 and Stanford’s Bing Concert Hall on October 6, 2019.
On March 11-12, 2019, the US-China Music Institute of the Bard College Conservatory of Music convened a group of scholars, music educators and performers for our 2nd annual conference, Tradition and Discovery: Teaching Chinese Music in the West. With participants from Europe, North America, and Asia, the conference aimed to present diverse perspectives and experiences and to highlight successes and challenges within the field of Chinese music education outside of China.
In geo-political circles it is recognized that China is a rising power. It is both a measured and aspirational phenomenon that has been encouraged by a government which understands that power can be expressed in a multitude of ways and not just by a strong military. Last week, in three separate concerts in three different halls, audiences heard Chinese musical compositions that were made possible by a supportive Chinese government.