Traditional Instruments of China

Report
Traditional Instruments of
China
BY: EMILY WONG
[email protected]
With many thanks to:
COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT PROGRAM OF
2011
PROFESSOR: LISA YUN
GRADUATE ASSISTANT: SANDY WOO
DEPARTMENT OF ASIAN AND ASIAN AMERICAN
STUDIES
BINGHAMTON UNIVERSITY
Note to Teacher:
 Please obtain a copy of Music in China by Frederick
Lau with CD attached for access to recordings of
specific instruments and a concise introduction to
Chinese music.
Note to Teacher:
 A test run was conducted on about 20 students and
their parents from the Chinese school run by the
Southern Tier Chinese Culture Association in Vestal,
NY. Their ages ranged from 7-9. Guest performer on
the zheng was Fuxin Bao.
History of Traditional Chinese
Instruments
AN BRIEF INTRODUCTION TO
CHINA’S VERY LONG HISTORY AND
CHINESE MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS
Chinese History
 China’s history spans over 4,000
years!
Traditional Chinese Instruments
 Traditional Chinese instruments
themselves have a very long history
which lasted over 7,000 years!
Traditional Chinese Instruments
Traditional Chinese Instruments
Some of the earliest instruments
date back to 6000 B.C. and were
made of animal bones!
Traditional Chinese Instruments
The oldest instruments found
were flutes made of animal leg
bones.
China’s Dynasties
 c 21st-16th century BC Xia
China’s Dynasties
 1700-1027 BC Shang
China’s Dynasties
 1027-771 BC Western Zhou
 770-221 BC Eastern Zhou
 770-476 BC Spring and Autumn period
 475-221 BC Warring States period
China’s Dynasties
 221-207 BC Qin
China’s Dynasties
 206 BC-AD 9 Western Han
 AD 9-24 Xin
 AD 25-220 Eastern Han
China’s Dynasties
 AD 220-280 Three Kingdoms (San Guo)
 220-265
Wei
 221-263 Shu
 229-280 Wu
China’s Dynasties
 AD 265-316 Western Jin
 AD 317-420 Eastern Jin
China’s Dynasties
 AD 420-588 Southern and Northern Dynasties
420-588 Southern Dynasties
420-478 Liu Song
479-501 Qi (Ch'i)
502-556 Liang
557-588 Chen
386-588 Northern Dynasties
386-533 Northern Wei
534-549 Eastern Wei
535-557 Western Wei
550-577 Northern Qi (Ch'i)
557-588 Northern Zhou (Chou)
China’s Dynasties
 AD 581-617 Sui
China’s Dynasties
 AD 618-907 Tang
China’s Dynasties
 AD 907-960 Five Dynasties

AD 907-979 Ten Kingdoms
China’s Dynasties
 916-1125 Liao
China’s Dynasties
 960-1279 Song
 960-1127 Northern Song
 1127-1279 Southern Song
China’s Dynasties
 1038-1227 Western Xia
China’s Dynasties
 1115-1234 Jin
China’s Dynasties
 1279-1368 Yuan
China’s Dynasties
 1368-1644 Ming
China’s Dynasties
 1644-1911 Qing
China’s Dynasties
 1912-present Modern China
Traditional Chinese
Instruments
BUT ONLY A FEW DYNASTIES HAD A
LARGE EFFECT ON THE MAKING OF
TRADITIONAL CHINESE
INSTRUMENTS.
Traditional Chinese Instruments
 During the Xia period, instruments were mainly
comprised of drums, bone flutes, bronze bells and
stone chimes.

Were important in rituals and dancing.
 The flutes and chimes became more complex
during the Shang and Zhou Dynasties with the rise
of the Bronze Age.
 Development of stringed instruments that used
silk strings.
Traditional Chinese Instruments
 The next period of important changes was during
the Qin to Han dynasties.
 Creation of instruments similar to the Western
lute.
 Linked to flourish in trade.
Traditional Chinese Instruments
 During the Wei to Tang dynasties, percussion
instruments, or drum-family instruments, became
popular along with woodwinds and fiddles.
Traditional Chinese Instruments
 The last period of change in Chinese instruments was
the rise in popularity of fiddles or bowed instruments
and plucked lutes starting from the Song dynasty to
the current period.
Traditional Chinese Instruments
 Can find influences from the Silk Road,
which was a major trade route between
China and other civilizations.
Traditional Chinese Instruments
A popular phrase used to
describe the instruments is “silk
and bamboo”.
Traditional Chinese Instruments
 中国音乐 (Zhōngguó yīnyuè) or 国乐
(guóyuè) for short – “music of the nation”
 Describes
music that is written for Chinese
instruments.
Traditional Chinese Instruments
Some of the songs have ancient
origins and legends behind
them.
Traditional Chinese Instruments
 Legends states that during the Three
Kingdom’s period, a Chinese general named
Zhuge Liang (Zhūgě Liàng) was able to
protect his city by playing the guqin. His
calm attitude fooled the enemy army into
thinking that they would be ambushed
inside.
Traditional Chinese Instruments
Some songs are also about
scenes from history or nature.
Traditional Chinese Instruments
 Ambush from Ten Sides, also known in Chinese as 十
面埋伏(shí miàn mái fú), describes a ferocious fight
scene from a battle between the Chu and Han armies
in 202 BC.
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JtrthXXmKgA
The Eight Tones 八音 (bāyīn)
THE TERM WAS OFTEN USED TO DESCRIBE
WHAT THE INSTRUMENTS WERE MADE OF.
Bamboo
Gourd
Wood
Metal
Animal Skin
Clay
Stone
Silk
Types of Ancient Chinese
Instruments
A BRIEF DESCRIPTION
AND HOW THEY ARE PLAYED
Types of Ancient Chinese Instruments
 Are made up of three categories:
 Strings
 Woodwinds
 Percussions
Strings
Stringed
instruments are
made of wood,
bamboo, silk,
metal and animal
skin.
Example: gŭqín
古琴
Strings
Bowing
 Example:

èrhú 二胡
Strings
Plucking
Example:

pípá, 琵琶
Strings
Hammering
Example:

yángqín 扬琴
Woodwinds
 Woodwinds were
made of:
 bamboo
 wood
 animal bones
 metal
Example: dízi 笛子
Woodwinds
Breathing through a mouth
piece.
Example:
Suŏnà
唢呐
Percussion
 Percussion
instruments were
made of:
 Clay
 Metal
 Wood
 Stone
 Gourd
Example: Luó 锣
Percussion
 Hands
 Example:
Jīngbó
京鈸
Percussion
 Mallets
 Example:
Biānqìng
编磬
Sticks
Example:
dàgŭ
大鼓
Quiz Time!
WHAT INSTRUMENT AM I?
What instrument am I?
Erhu
I am a 2-stringed lute that is
bowed.
I came to China over a thousand
years ago from Central Asia!
What instrument am I?
Pipa
I am a four-stringed instrument
that is plucked.
I am over 2,000 years old!
What instrument am I?
Guqin
I am a seven stringed
instrument that is plucked.
I am over 5,000 years old.
What instrument am I?
Suona
I am a woodwind instrument
with a metal bell at the end.
I am over 1,700 years old!
What instrument am I?
Dizi
I am a flute made of bamboo.
I am over 6,000 years old.
Sources:
 Lau, Frederick. Music in China: Experiencing Music,
Expressing Culture. New York: Oxford UP, 2008.
Print.
 Lee, Yuan-Yuan, and Sin-yan Shen. Chinese Musical
Instruments. Chicago: Chinese Music Society of
North America, 1999. Print.
 Lai, T. C., and Robert Mok. Jade Flute: the Story of
Chinese Music. New York: Schocken, 1985. Print.
 Jin, Jie. Chinese Music: Echos in Ancient and
Modern times. Beijing: China Intercontinental,
2010. Print.
Resources
http://www.philmultic.com/home/instruments/
Provides a basic introduction to Chinese instruments along
with video and audio files.
http://music.ibiblio.org/pub/multimedia/chinesemusic/html/traditional.html
Provides media files of traditional and contemporary
Chinese music
Photos and images: Courtesy of Google Images

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