extract (4 min.) guzheng and pipa
playing from a documentary by CBC TV (BravoCanada) broadcasted
on January 12, 2008, 8:30pm. Thanks to BBC (BravoCanada) for
the permission to use this recording for demo purposes. (more
HQ video by Dutch TV,
14, 2008: Interview and live performance at the vrijegeluiden
TV (music channel).
1: "King Chu doffs his armour"
Xiejia), traditional pipa solo from classical repertoire, martial
style, concert live recorded at the Early
Music Festival in St. Petersburg, December 18, 2012.
King Chu doffs his Armour" is one of the most famous masterpiece
for pipa solo. Information about the composer is still not clear.
There are some research works which seem to indicate that the
original composer could be the renowned poet Wang Wei (around
7th century) whose painting and pipa playing are equally famous.
The music theme is about the tragic historical event: the defeat
of King Xiang Yu who thought himself invincible. During the war
which followed the foundation of the Han Empire (202 BC - 220
AD), Xiang Yu suffered a fatal defeat. The pipa depicts the scene
of the battle, noises of the soldiers' flight, and the indescribable
feeling of being defeated and of having to farewell his beloved
concubine Yuji. The performance of this piece demands a whole
range of complex techniques and virtuosity, with speed, precision
an amazing video clip of Liu Fang performing. You can't
help but be drawn into her world.
At first glance, it may seem like her fingers are tensed
up at times, but on the contrary, they are extremely relaxed
and so agile and responsive to the music that it draws
the soul of the music out through its movements. Interestingly
enough, it is not only the active fretting fingers, but
the inactive fingers that also determine the sound, as
Chinese music, like its language, is full of tonalities,
and the general shape of the hand will bring out a different
nuance...." - Helen, Guitarist
2: "Wild geese descending on the sandy beach"
(classical tradition). Seeing the wild geese flying freely
and elegantly in the sky and then descending on the sandy
beach, relaxed and playful, one cannot but feel the beauty
and harmony of nature. This piece entails the Taoist philosophy.
3: Falling Snow decorate the Evergreen
Lyrical style (civil style) from the traditional classical
natural scenes or phenomena to describe inner feeling and
determination is quite common in Chinese arts. This piece,
derived from very old times, is like a Traditional Chinese
painting, depicts the snowing in a evergreen forest, beautiful
and harsh. Since the pine tree can resist extreme cold, it
is a symbol of a strong self.
4: The ambush from all sides Martial
style from the traditional classical repertory:
ambush from ten sides (classical tradition): With its highly
virtuoso programmatic effects and tremendous power, this piece
is regarded as the most representative of the "martial
repertoire" of classical pipa solo. It describes the
glorious victory of Liu Bang over Xiang Yu in 202 BC, the
same theme as "The King doffs his Armour", however,
from a totally different view point.
5: "On a theme to dance"
(Ge Wu Yin), composed by Liu Tianhua (1895-1932), recorded
live at Liu Fang's solo concert at TFF
Rudolstadt festival on July 9, 2006. This clip is taken
from the festival DVD with permission to use for demo purposes.
to view the whole piece recorded life at the concert in Paris
(Theatre dela Ville, May 8, 2006)
died very young, Liu Tianhua (1895-1932) is one of the greatest
composers in Chinese history. He composed three pieces for
pipa and several other pieces for different instruments, all
became master pieces of classical repertoire.
6: "Autumn Moon in a Palace of Han Emperor"
(Hangong Qiuyue), traditional piece from the Chinese classical
repertoire, recorded live at Liu Fang's solo recital in the
music festival in Almeria, Spain, on June 19, 2008. (This
is an Extract. The complete piece is found in Liu Fang's guzheng
ancient melody is said to represent the loneliness and melancholic
feeling of the ladies in the palace of the Han. The title
just perfectly reflects the musical atmosphere.
7: "The night of the Bonfire Fest"
(Huobajie zhi ye), composed by Wu Junsheng for pipa solo, performed
by Liu Fang, accompanied by Ziya Tabbasian on framed drum.
8: "Red River"(Honghe
Yejin), composed by Zheng Qingrong in the 1980s based on a folk
melody of Yi people inYunnan Province, China. This is a concert
live recording during a tour in France in 2005.
Spring on the Tianshan Mountaon"
, composed by the renowned pipa master Wang Fandi,
is one of the famous piece from Xinjiang folk music.
Originally for pipa solo. In this demo video, Liu
Fang performed with percussionist Ziya Tabassian on
Spring Rain, composed by Zhu Yi & Wen Bo in the