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Chen Yi

Chen Yi

Chen was born and raised in Guangzhou, China into a talented family. Her parents were doctors and musicians; her mother played the piano, and her father was a violinist. Her older sister was a child prodigy, and both she and their younger brother continue to work as professional musicians in China.

Chen began studying piano at the age of three, heavily influenced by the music of Western composers such as Bach and Mozart. However, once the Cultural Revolution began in 1966, Western attitudes were severely shunned and arts were opposed. For ten years, education came to a halt and people were relocated to work in large communes in countryside. Chen's father and older sister were sent away, but she managed to stay in her hometown a while longer and continued to practice music, although she was forced to stuff a blanket inside her piano in order to dampen the sound and play her violin with a mute. When she was 15 years old, the family house was searched, all possessions were taken, and the rest of her family was dispersed to different locations to perform compulsory labor in the countryside.

Chen used her time spent laboring in the countryside to learn and appreciate the Chinese folk culture. Her connection with Chinese music would prove a useful tool in finding her own voice for her musical compositions in later life. At age seventeen, she returned to Guangzhou and began working as concertmaster in the orchestra of the Beijing Opera Troupe in Guangzhou.

Chen lived for many years in New York City, and studied composition with Chou Wen-chung and Mario Davidovsky at Columbia University, earning a DMA with distinction. Her husband is the composer Zhou Long. As of 2006, both Chen and Zhou are professors of composition at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance.

Alongside a great number of orchestral works, Chen has also made many contributions to the choral repertoire and the chamber music repertoire, including works written for traditional Chinese instruments.

Featured Items (See Related Items.)

Displaying 1-4 of 4 items.


Chen Yi : Chinese Songs for Treble Voices : SSA. : Sheet Music : Chen Yi

Chen Yi : Chinese Songs for Treble Voices

Review: As a Distinguished Professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance, a prolific composer and recipient of the prestigious Charles Ives Living Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, Chen Yi blends Chinese and Western traditions, transcending cultural and musical boundaries. This is a collection of her works for unaccompanied treble voices including Chinese Mountain Songs commission for Kitka by commissioning grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Rockefeller Foundation.

Songlist: Chinese Mountain Songs, Looking at the Sea, With Flowers Blooming, When Will the Scholartree Blossom?, A Ma Lei A Ho, Gathering in the Naked Oats, Mt' Wuzhi, Ga Da Mei Lin

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5699b | Sheet Music $5.95 | SSA. add item to cart Chinese Choral Music Arrangements


Chen Yi : Choral Works : SATB : Sheet Music : Chen Yi

Chen Yi : Choral Works

Review: As a Distinguished Professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance, a prolific composer and recipient of the prestigious Charles Ives Living Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, Chen Yi blends Chinese and Western traditions, transcending cultural and musical boundaries. These are a collection of her works for unaccompanied mixed voices.

Songlist: Distance Can't Keep Us Two Apart, Spring Rain, The Bronze Taotie, Shady Grove, The West Lake

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6051b | Sheet Music $10.95 | SATB add item to cart


Chen Yi : Folk Songs from the Orient : SATB : Sheet Music : Chen Yi

Chen Yi : Folk Songs from the Orient

Review: As a Distinguished Professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance, a prolific composer and recipient of the prestigious Charles Ives Living Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, Chen Yi blends Chinese and Western traditions, transcending cultural and musical boundaries.

Songlist: Sakura, Sakura, Arirang, Xuan, Written on a Rainy Night (Tang poem), Landscape, Know You How Many Petals Falling?

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7231b | Sheet Music $8.95 | SATB add item to cart Asian Choral Arrangements


Chen Yi : Four Chinese Folk Songs : SATB : Sheet Music : Chen Yi

Chen Yi : Four Chinese Folk Songs

Review: Commissioned by and dedicated to the Singapore Youth Choir, under the direction of Jennifer Tham, who premiered the works in July 2004 for their 40th anniversary celebration. Chen's unique musical language brings ancient texts and melodies into the current day; the resulting blending is still indicative of both realms. For better concert choirs looking for a diverse yet challenging program.

Songlist: A Single Bamboo Can Easily Bend, A Horseherd's Mountain Song, The Flowing Stream, The Sun Is Rising With Our Joy, Two Chinese Folk Songs

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9434b | Sheet Music $5.95 | SATB add item to cart Chinese Choral Music Arrangements

Related Items ( See Featured Items )

Displaying 1-12 of 12 items.

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Looking at the SeaChen YiPeninsula Women's ChorusNature Pictures 1 CDMORE DETAILS 
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The West LakeChen YiChicago A CappellaEclectric 1 CDMORE DETAILS 
Wild GrassChen YiChanticleerColors Of Love 1 CDMORE DETAILS 
Wild GrassChen YiChanticleerPortrait 1 CDMORE DETAILS 
Written of a Rainy Night Chen YiChanticleerColors Of Love 1 CDMORE DETAILS 


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