Trio challenges perceptions of Chinese music - Metro US

Trio challenges perceptions of Chinese music

Think you know Asian music?

A group performing at the Ottawa International Chamber Music Festival will challenge everything you know about Chinese music at two performances tonight and tomorrow afternoon.

“People usually know Asian music as slow and in 4/4 style,” said erhu (Chinese violin) player Lan Tung, who forms the Vancouver-based group along with percussionist and Ottawa native Jonathan Bernard and Chinese zither player Haiqiong Deng.

“People have this expectation … from what they experience in movies, Chinese restaurants and Chinatown, they think (of the music) as slow and meditative, but the style of music you can play on these instruments is a lot richer than that.”

The group’s Juno-nominated repertoire is inspired by the Silk Road civilization, but also by Indian and Egyptian culture, “and by music I hear at summer festivals,” said Tung.

“It will be accessible to a wide range of audiences,” said Tung, and features pieces 2,000 years old to two months old.

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