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China National Symphony Orchestra
Dates:October 12, 2018
The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra (Chinese Version)
Piano Concerto No. 21 in C major, K. 467
Symphony No. 3 in E-flat major, Op. 55, “Heroic Symphony”
ZHANG Yi, one of today's influential young conductors in China, also served as the Music Director, Chief Conductor and Deputy Director of the National Ballet of China.
As a major young conductor in China, ZHANG Yi has devoted himself in hundreds of concerts, operas and ballets. During the past two decades, he has cooperated with lots of orchestras at home and abroad, including China National Symphony Orchestra, China Philharmonic Orchestra, Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, Shanghai Philharmonic Orchestra, National Ballet of China Symphony Orchestra, China National Opera House, Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra, Zhejiang Symphony Orchestra, Hangzhou Philharmonic Orchestra, Hong Kong Symphonitta, Macao Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, Saarbrucken Radio Symphony Orchestra, Cuba Symphony Orchestra, Kungliga Operan, Orchestra Colonne of Paris, and Württemberg Chamber Orchestra, etc.
In his performances around European, American, Australian and Asian countries, ZHANG Yi collaborated with numerous artists such as Emmanuel Pahud, Wenzel Fuchs, Renaud Capucon, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Myung Wha Chung, Sarah Chang, Lang Lang, CHEN Sa, NING Feng and Li-wei Qin, etc. During his tour in Malaysia, ZHANG Yi received great acclaim in local news media, describing him as "a brilliant, incredible charming young conductor". He also won personal recognition from the King and Queen of Malaysia. In 2012 and 2013, ZHANG Yi conducted the Malaysia Philharmonic Orchestra in music seasons for two consecutive years, in return for the love and expectation of Asian audiences.
Fascinated in modern music, he conducted many world premieres of Chinese and foreign works, including the world premiere of the ballet Raise the Red Lantern in May 2001, which was composed by CHEN Qigang and directed by ZHANG Yimou. In April 2012, he successfully conducted the Chinese premiere of Mass in C Minor by Mozart with Macao Orchestra in Our Lady of the Rosary Church, Macao, introducing this great masterpiece to Chinese audience. ZHANG Yi has conducted in many arts festivals and major theatres. In 2004, he led the China National Symphony Orchestra to participate in the Spring International Arts Festival in Pyongyang, North Korea; and with Cuba Symphony Orchestra, he conducted on the opening of Cuba Arts Festival in 2006; in 2005, 2007 and 2008, he worked with Lanzhou Opera House Symphony Orchestra to present concerts and the opera A Big Dream of Dunhuang in Sydney Opera House, Wiener Musikverein and Palais des Congrès de Paris; in 2008, ZHANG Yi toured with the National Ballet of China in Royal Opera House, Covent Garden in London; in 2009, he collaborated with Orchestra Colonne at Opera National de Paris; and in 2010, he performed with Kungliga Operan in Stockholm.
Aiming to make the Chinese music and musicians known worldwide, ZHANG Yi has released many recordings. In January 2002, he conducted for the recording of YE Xiaogang's symphony works New Music from China with Saarbrucken Radio Symphony Orchestra, which was published by Wergo (Germany). In July 2013, ZHANG Yi went to London with famous cellist Qin Liwei, where he conducted London Philharmonic Orchestra to record Britain music works for Deeca Classics.
Known for his enthusiasm and passion, ZHANG Yi has often been invited to take part in national events. In July 2007, he conducted in the performance of celebrating the 10th anniversary of Hong Kong's return to China. In 2008, he conducted for the recording of most musical pieces for the opening ceremony of 2008 Olympic Games, including the theme song You and Me. In May 2012, he was given the "Award of Outstanding Contribution" at the Beijing Modern Music Festival for his numerous performances of Chinese and western modern music pieces.
Stephen Hough Pianist
One of the most distinctive artists of his generation, Stephen Hough combines a distinguished career as a pianist with those of composer and writer. Hough was the first classical performer to be awarded a MacArthur Fellowship and was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the New Year’s Honours 2014.
Since taking first prize at the 1983 Naumburg Competition in New York, Hough has performed with many of the world’s major orchestras and has given recitals at the most prestigious concert halls. He is a regular guest at festivals such as Salzburg, La Roque- d'Anthéron, Mostly Mozart, Edinburgh, and BBC Proms, where he has made more than 20 concerto appearances.
Recent and upcoming highlights include performances with the BBC Symphony, London Philharmonic, Hallé, Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg, Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte-Carlo, Sydney Symphony, Seoul Philharmonic, Dallas and St Louis Symphonies, New York Philharmonic and The Cleveland orchestras. In 2018 he will be Artist-in-Residence at the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, performing a cycle of Beethoven concertos, and will give recitals at New York’s Carnegie Hall and London’s Royal Festival Hall (International Piano Series) amongst others.
Hough’s extensive discography of over 60 CDs has garnered international awards including the Diapason d’Or de l’Année, several Grammy nominations, and eight Gramophone Awards including Record of the Year and the Gold Disc. Recent releases include a live recording of Schumann and Dvořák’s piano concertos with Andris Nelsons and the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and a solo disc of Scriabin and Janáček, both for Hyperion Records.
As a composer, Hough has been commissioned by Wigmore Hall, Musée du Louvre, London’s National Gallery, Westminster Abbey, etc. His music is published by Josef Weinberger Ltd.
Stephen Hough has published essays in several academic anthologies and has written for The Telegraph, The Times, The Guardian, Evening Standard and The Independent. His first novel, The Final Retreat, is published by Sylph Editions. He is a Governor of the Royal Ballet companies, an Honourary Bencher of the Middle Temple, an Honourary Member of the Royal Philharmonic Society, a Visiting Professor at the Royal Academy of Music, the International Chair of Piano Studies at the Royal Northern College of Music, and is on the faculty of The Juilliard School in New York.
China National Symphony Orchestra
The China National Symphony Orchestra (CNSO) is a national orchestra established from the former Central Orchestra (founded in 1956) with support from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of China in 1996. Directly subordinated to the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, it consists of three art production units - the symphony orchestra, chorus and Beijing Concert Hall.
CNSO’s present Director is ZHANG Yi, Artistic Consultants WU Zuqiang and HAN Zhongjie, Honourary Artistic Director TAN Dun, Chief Conductor LI Xincao, Honorary Conductor TANG Muhai, Chief Guest Conductor SHAO En, Specially Invited Conductor CHEN Xieyang and First Violinist ZHAO Kunyu.
In the last century, China’s conductors LI Delun, HAN Zhongjie and YAN Liangkun had laid a solid foundation for the CNSO’s operations. In the new era, conductors CHEN Zuohuang, TANG Muhai and SHAO En have contributed to CNSO development.
CNSO maintains good cooperation with many of the world’s top musicians such as conductors Karajan, Ormandy, Seiji Ozawa, Rozhdestvensky, Dutoit, David Zinman and Plasson, etc., performers David Oistrakh, Menuhin, Stern, Mutter, Shaham, Joshua Bell, LU Siqing, NING Feng, Yo-Yo Ma, WANG Jian, YIN Chengzong, Argerich, Lang Lang, YUNDI, Yuja Wang, Lindemann and Meyer, etc., and singers José Carreras, Giuseppe Giacomini and Kathleen Battle, etc. In the Oscar award-winning documentary From MAO to Mozart, the sound cooperation and deep friendship between the CNSO and art masters are well recorded.
The CNSO bears strong performing techniques and artistic culture, as well as excels at a broad range of music works. Apart from a huge amount of repertoire of the western classic works, the orchestra also has convincing capabilities to interpret new music pieces created by modern composers. The CNSO has delivered concert-based operas composed by Tchaikovsky, Beethoven, Wagner, Puccini and Richard Strauss.
Meanwhile, the CNSO also pays high attention to the creation and promotion of Chinese music works. For instance, the piano concerto Yellow River was created and first presented by the CNSO. In recent years, the orchestra has been working on the series concert Dragon Rhythm and Chinese Melody, promoting excellent Chinese composers and works. It is through Dragon Rhythm and Chinese Melody - a Special Concert on Chinese Music that contemporary composers TAN Dun, YE Xiaogang, GUAN Xia, ZHOU Long and CHEN Yi, etc. have gained wide popularity from both at home and abroad.
The CNSO has undertaken major performance tasks for various national affairs and diplomatic activities, such as “Beautiful China and Glorious Dream” Concert marking 65th Anniversary of Founding of People’s Republic of China, Gala for Commemoration of 70th Anniversary of Victory of Chinese People's Resistance against Japanese Aggression and World Anti-Fascist War, “Eternal Faith” Concert for Celebration of 95th Anniversary of Establishment of Communist Party of China, “Hangzhou，Living Poetry” Gala for 11th Hangzhou G20 Summit, “Sailing to Future” gala for meetings of BRICS leasers, Boao Forum for Asia, APEC Summit, and the performance for meetings of China-US leaders, etc. The CNSO’s superb skills and extraordinary performance have gained unanimous praise from foreign dignitaries.
Additionally, the CNSO has recorded music for numerous movies and TV series such as ZHOU Enlai, The Promise, Taking Tiger Mountain by Strategy, The Years of Burning Passions, and large events including Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, National People's Congress and Chinese Political Consultative Conference, and APEC Summit, etc. The world-renowned record companies including EMI, Philips, DG and Universal Record have made several CDs for CNSO and issued them worldwide.
The CNSO keeps an annual art production of nearly 100 concerts with tours nationwide. Since last century, the orchestra has taken the lead in art practices by bringing symphony to the grassroots, such as schools, armies and factories, etc.
Apart from delivering great performances to Chinese audiences, the orchestra has also visited major countries and regions in Europe, Asia, Australia and North America. Western audiences marvel that “in the hereditary kingdom of symphony, a new member has undoubtedly emerged.” The concerts of “2010 World Symphony Orchestra Music Festival”, “2013 Asia Orchestra Art Festival” and “2015 Asia Orchestra Art Week (Tokyo)” have all been inscribed with the sounds of the CNSO.