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Carleton’s Renowned Chinese Music Ensemble presents their Winter Performance

February 25, 2014

Carleton College’s renowned Chinese Music Ensemble will perform on Sunday, March 2 at 2 p.m. in the Concert Hall. This event is free and open to the public. 

The ensemble, formed in 2004, consists of Carleton students playing traditional Chinese instruments. It has performed at numerous venues throughtout southern Minnesota and the Twin Cities. This year, members include first-year student Xiaoshu ‘Lucy’ Lu (China), sophomore Xiaodi Wang (China), senior Yuanbo ‘Cody’ Wang (China), and visiting instructor in Chinese Faye Merritt on Erhu; first-year students Oiyuan ‘Isabelle’ Hu (China), Heqing ‘Isabelle’ Huang (China), Shatian Wang (China), and Yifan ‘Vicky’ Wu (Sedona, Ariz.) on Guzheng; junior Yawen Chen (China) on Dizi; sophomore Kai Huang (China) and sophomore Ming Zi (China) on Pipa and Accordian; junior Mingsheng ‘Ken’ Wang (Canada) on Sanxian; first-year student Tian ‘Autumn’ Qiu (China) on Zhongruan; first-year student Emma Grisanzio (Carol Stream, Ill.) on Cello; and sophomore Zhilu Zhang (China) on Violin. 

Four members of the Ensemble were recently honored at the 2014 Huain Cup International Chinese Instrument Competition at the Le Petit Trianon Theatre in San Jose, Calif. A panel comprised of elite musicians and music scholars from the People's Republic of China awarded a Gold Medal to Yawen Chen '15 on the Dizi (Chinese bamboo flute); a Silver Medal to Vicky Wu '17 on the Guzheng (Chinese zither);  and Bronze Medals to Xiaodi Wang '16 on the Erhu (Chinese fiddle) and Ken Wang '15 on the Sanxian (Chinese banjo). 

This year marks the third time Carleton students have competed in this prestigious competition. Kimloan Nguyen '08 took home a Gold Medal on the Pipa (Chinese lute) in 2008, after being awarded a Silver Medal in 2007. 

Ensemble director Gao Hong is the music department’s Performance Activities Coordinator as well as a lecturer in Chinese musical instruments at Carleton. She is a graduate of China’s premier music school, the Central Conservatory of Music, and has received numerous honors and awards for her work as a musician as well as several commissions as a composer. Hong, whose instrument of choice is the pipa, or pear-shaped lute, has performed throughout the United States, Europe and Asia, including with such groups as the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Heidelberg Philharmonic and the (San Francisco) Women’s Philharmonic. 

For more information about this event, including disability accommodations, contact the Carleton College Department of Music at (507) 222-4347. The Carleton College Concert Hall is located on First and Winona Streets South in Northfield.