From ivory and drum skin, string and brass, now come bamboo-musical instruments.
Voice of Bamboo, is a newly released musical compilation performed exclusively on instruments made from bamboo, which has just been released by Beijing Trends Cultural Communication Company (Hong Kong Trends Record Company).
The instruments featured on the CD include wind instruments such as the panpipes, xiao (vertically-blown instrument) and shakuhachi (a Japanese blown instrument); stringed instruments such as zhuhu (a two-stringed bow instrument) and datong (a traditional Chinese blown instrument); and percussion instruments such as zhubanqin (Chinese bamboo marimba).
The musical pieces include some of the most popular Chinese folk songs and works re-arranged by renowned composer Huang Hui, such as Dance of the Yao People, Hua'er yu Shaonian and Little Cabbage."
"Using an ensemble of pure bamboo instruments to play Chinese folk songs and to produce a high-quality CD in terms of both performance skill and sound effect, was our intention and this CD is the result," said Huang.
The CD brought together a group of creative musicians such as Wang Wei, who established the first bamboo instrument ensemble in China, and Du Cong, an instrumentalist best known for expanding the range of the traditional bamboo flute.
Trends Records' other albums are Qinghai Qing (Blue Qinghai) and Great Dream of Dunhuang.
Qinghai Qing is a collection of some original works on the theme of Northwest China, in which the timbre of traditional Chinese instruments is blended with electro-acoustic music.
Great Dream of Dunhuang is a dance drama composed by Zhang Qianyi, well-known for his song Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. The CD includes some of the very best aspects of dance drama.
Trends Records plan to soon release a CD series of western Chinese music, including three CDs featuring the music in the Xinjiang Uygur and Inner Mongolia autonomous regions and Guizhou Province.
(China Daily October 8, 2002)