Full-size Chinese orchestras started popping up during the Cultural Revolution; after Mao banned pop and Western classical, a professional musician’s only respite from patriotic songs was in the Middle Nation’s traditional music. Symphonies reconfigured themselves to feature only Chinese instruments, and native composers scoured their own history for themes. Hong Kong, which was largely insulated from the regime, now hosts one of the foremost of these orchestras; it is a reminder of just how much there was to rediscover. Part of Carnegie Hall’s Ancient Paths, Modern Voices Festival.
Fri., Oct. 30, 8 p.m., 2009
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on October 27, 2009