Chen Yi

About this work:

This work was performed by American Composers Orchestra and is included on NewMusicJukebox through a partnership between AMC and ACO. (Published by Theodore Presser Company) Fur further information, please contact: 588 North Gulph Road King of Prussia, PA 19406 USA Phone: 610-592-1222 Fax: 610-592-1229 E-mail: For perusal music material, Ms. Judith Ilika For rental of music material, Ms. Maria Iannacone Program note of Chen Yi's Symphony No. 2 (1993) Commissioned by The Women's Philharmonic, San Francisco, in 1993, the one movement work in Largo is dedicated to the memory of my dearest father Chen Er-nan M.D., whom had his whole life devoted to the people in his motherland. By the time I began to understand human being's sincereness and honesty, ignorance, servility and avariciousness, during the tragic Cultural Revolution taken place in China, a voice of yearning for civilization has been haunting me continuously. It's impossible to return to a primitive simplicity. We have to perfect ourselves and bring civilization to more people in the world, through education in the reforming society. My Symphony No. 2 contains the experiences of waking up to reality, introspecting and longing. There are multi-line melodies in bass voice in the opening. The atmosphere of the heavy background is interrupted by the sharp percussion sound, which symbolizes the sparkle of the sudden epiphanies. Following a period of sincere meditation, presented by the solo flute, cello and clarinets, the music is brought to a climax expressively. The ending part, presented by the soft lingering gestures on percussion and sliding harmonics on strings, carries a mysterious dream toward the future... The work has been given the world premiere by the Women's Philharmonic in San Francisco on Jan. 29, 1994, the US East coast premiere by the American Composers Orchestra at Carnegie Hall in New York on April 30, 1995, and European premiere by the Halle Orchestra in Manchester, England on Nov. 19, 1995. It's also performed by, among others, the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra at the Musikprotokoll Festival in Graz on Oct. 3, 1997; the National Symphony Orchestra in its subscription concert series on May 13, 14, 15, 1999 in Washington DC; and the Tokyo Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra in Japan on March 30, 2000. It’s on New Albion CD The Music of Chen Yi [NA090], performed by the Women’s Philharmonic, under the baton of JoAnn Falletta. For detailed introduction of the work, please go to American Symphony Orchestra League's website . INSTRUMENTATION 3 Flutes 2 Oboes 1 English horn (in F) 2 Clarinets (in Bb) 1 Bass clarinet (in Bb) 2 Bassoons 1 Contrabassoon 4 French horns (in F) 3 Trumpets (parts in Bb, score in C) 3 Trombones 1 Tuba Harp (doubling Suspended Cymbal and Triangle) Timpani: 1 chromatic; Suspended Cymbal; Chinese Cymbals (Naobo); Glockenspiel Percussion 1: Temple Blocks (3); Snare Drum (w.s.); Small Bell; Wind Chimes; Tam-tam; Tubular Chime Percussion 2: Large Bongo; Hand Bell; Triangle; Bass Drum (on side); Tubular Chime Percussion 3: Vibraphone; Chinese Cymbals (Naobo); Small Beijing Gong Strings

Version: Full orchestra
Year composed: 1994
Duration: 00:18:00
Ensemble type: Orchestra:Standard Orchestra
Instrumentation: 3 Flute, 3 Oboe, 3 Clarinet, 3 Bassoon, 4 Horn in F, 3 Trumpet, 3 Trombone, 1 Tuba, 1 Timpani, 3 Percussion (General), 1 Strings (General), 1 Harp

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