Tag Archives: Chen Yi

Nian Hua (Chinese New Year’s Paintings)

For Guitar Duo
Duration: 12′
Commission: Commissioned by the Beijing Guitar Duo (Meng Su & Yameng Wang); made possible by the Chamber Music America Classical Commissioning Program with generous funding provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the Chamber Music America Endowment Fund.
Premiere: April 29, 2017. Beijing Guitar Duo; Austin, TX.
Movements: I. Spring Ox and Cowherd
II. Five Boys Snatch Lotus Seed Pods
III. Prosperity in the New Year Nian Hua
Program Note:
Nian Hua (Chinese New Year’s Paintings) for two guitars is inspired by the colorful folk paintings presented in Yangliuqing Town in Tianjin, China. The work is 12 minutes in duration, and composed in three movements:
1. Spring Ox and Cowherd
2. Five Boys Snatch Lotus Seed Pods
3. Prosperity in the New Year Nian Hua

–Chen Yi

Chen Yi: Four Spirits

Each of the four movements in “Four Spirits” is an aural portrait of a mythical/spiritual animal from ancient Chinese culture, and each is quite different in character. Vivid, colorful and distinct, each aroused a different feeling in the listener…I thought the music was thrilling…

–Kate Dobbs, The Five Points Star

Chen Yi: Four Spirits

There are very few measures within “Four Spirits” that gives the piano soloist a moments rest, and a great deal calls for either extremes of dynamics or a wide palette of color. Yang was indefatigable in meeting every unconventional demand of Chen’s frequently dense score.

–William Thomas Walker, Classical Voice of North Carolina

Chen Yi’s New Piano Concerto, Four Spirits, Premiered in China

The China Philharmonic Orchestra and pianist Clara Yang premiered Chen Yi’s Four Spirits on November 18th in Beijing, China. The ensemble, under the direction of Long Yu, also brought the work to Chapel Hill, NC on December 8th for its U.S. Premiere.

Four Spirits (2016)
For Piano and Orchestra
Solo Pno.; 2(2 = Picc.) 2 2 2 – 4 2 3(B.Tbn.) 1; Timp. 2Perc. Str.
Duration: 26′
Commissioned by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Program Note:
Four Spirits represents the four sacred animals in Chinese legend: the blue dragon in the east, the black xuanwu (a combination of turtle and snake in one) in the north, the white tiger in the west, and the red phoenix in the south. The images have inspired me in my music creation.

The first movement features a bright and refreshing image, with tunes composed in the style of Chinese folk songs drawn from the center part of China, the music is lyrical and energetic.

The sonority in the second movement is dark, mysterious and imaginative, with passionate and expressive layers, as well as vertical soundscapes and space presented by the piano solo.

In the third movement, the dramatic, witted, and powerful characteristics are presented by the patterns in extreme registers on the piano, supported by sections of instruments in the orchestra. This shorter movement serves as an episode towards the final movement.

The fourth movement is fast, lively, fluent, and vibrant. The thematic material is taken from a folk tune in South China. The piano and the orchestra became an organic whole in the four-movement concerto, symbolizing the spirits of the culture from the East.

–Chen Yi
View Perusal Score
Coming soon…

Chen Yi: Chinese Rap

Chinese Rap
Centaur Records (CRC3440); June 10, 2016
Performer(s): Kennesaw State University Symphony Orchestra, Michael Alexander, conductor; Kennesaw State University Chamber Singers, Leslie J. Blackwell, conductor; Kennesaw State University Wind Ensemble, David Thomas Kehler, conductor; Helen Kim, violin, Robert Henry, piano
Work(s): Chinese Rap
Romance and Dance
Set of Chinese Folk Songs Vol. I; Vol. III
Tu for Wind Ensemble