17 Jul 2016

GAO PING: Su Xie Si Ti (Four Sketches)

From Music Alive, 8:00 pm on 17 July 2016

Creation of music should be like a tree manifesting itself in thousands of branches and leaves, and the source of that creation is inevitably its own root. That root, for me, is the personal as well as the collective memory of the past. Gao Ping

GAO PING: Su Xie Si Ti (Four Sketches)

Xiao (Boisterous)

Cuo Diao (Split Melody)

Dui Wei (Counterpoint)

Shuo (Shining)

  • The first movement Xiao (Boisterous) was inspired by a fast and bumpy motorbike ride in Yunnan Province in China. A local tea producer from the Hani minority, took Gao Ping on the back of his bike up into the mountains to see his plantation and share some of the fermented black tea with him. The music also reflects the blues-y style of the folk music of the area.
  • The second movement Cuo Diao (Split Melody) is based on a gentle love song of the Dai people of that region.
  • The third movement Dui Wei (Counterpoint) depicts a funeral procession in the Sichuan countryside where the off-stage violin represents a raucous band leading the procession while the cello and piano reflect the mood of the mourning relatives following on.
  • The fourth movement Shuo (Shining) returns to the rhythm and energy of the motorbike ride and builds to an exhilarating climax.

The work was commissioned and premiered by NZTrio in 2009. Gao Ping acknowledges the influence of Jack Body in this music.

Recorded by RNZ Concert at St Andrew's on The Terrace, Wellington in July 2016

Producer: David McCaw

Engineer: Graham Kennedy

About the composer:

Gao Ping

Gao Ping Photo: Supplied by SOUNZ

Gao Ping (b. 1970) is a composer-pianist, born in Chengdu, Sichuan province of China. He studied in the USA in the 1990’s. In demand as a composer, he has received numerous commissions and performances such as at the Aspen Music Festival, Dresdener Musikfestspiele, Hibiki Hall Festival (Japan), New Zealand International Arts Festival (Wellington), and the Beijing-Modern International Music Festival.

As a pianist, Gao Ping’s repertoire is extensive and he has performed to acclaim all over the world. In 2008, Gao Ping premiered his Piano Concerto with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra conducted by Kenneth Young.

Gao is currently a Professor in Composition at the Conservatory of Music-Capital Normal University as well as a guest professor at the China Conservatory of Music. He previously taught at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand.

About the artists:

The Calvino Trio was founded in 2013. The three young musicians, Finnish violinist Sini Simonen, Canadian cellist Alexandre Foster and New Zealand/Japanese pianist Jun Bouterey-Ishido, first met at the IMS Prussia Cove master classes in Cornwall.

New Zealander Jun Bouterey-Ishido will be familiar to audiences from the concert stage and his competition successes, including 1st Prize at the 2008 Kerikeri International Piano Competition. Since then his studies have taken him to the Liszt Academy, Budapest and to Stuttgart, where he graduated with Distinction from the Konzertexamen (Concert Artist) programme, receiving mentoring from Péter Nagy and Kirill Gerstein.

Finnish violinist, Sini Simonen studied at the Sibelius Academy and Musikhochschule Hannover. She has been a prize winner in several major international violin competitions including the Lipizer, Flesch, Cremona and Sibelius violin competition. Sini was a member of the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra and has played as a soloist with, among others, the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Helsinki Philharmonic, the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, the Göttingen Symphony Orchestra, the Gyor Philharmonic Orchestra and the Trondheim Symphony Orchestra.

Alexandre Foster, born in Canada, studied cello with Thomas Demenga in Basel. A devoted chamber musician, Alexandre Foster was a member of the Iris Quartet (Freiburg) with which he played concerts in Europe and America and is now a member of the Baroque Ensemble Le-Je-Ne-Scay-Quoi. Alongside his performing commitments, since 2013 Alexandre has held a teaching post at the Hochschule für Musik Stuttgart and is the assistant of Conradin Brotbek at the Hochschule der Künste Bern.

Calvino Trio

Calvino Trio Photo: Calvino Trio