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Tan Dun presents new vision in music creation

Sensitivity, imagination and passion will all be on show in Tan Dun' s concerts in late October. Tan will conduct the Hong Kong Sinfonietta performing his latest works "Paper Concerto for Paper Percussion and Orchestra" and "The Map: Concerto for Cello, Video and Orchestra".

"Paper Concerto for Paper Percussion and Orchestra", the Asian premier, is the latest work of Tan's "Organic Music" that marked the opening of Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles last October.

Tan turns the most mundane elements of our lives, such as a sheet of paper, into creative energy. As a child, he loved to make his musical instruments out of cardboard boxes, paper fans, umbrellas and bags. With this as his inspiration, he extends his battery of paper percussion pieces with three gigantic sails hung from the ceiling to create an array of sounds. Adding to the creative process, violinists will be spread throughout the audience, creating a unique musical experience with live surround sound. The performance will also feature percussion soloists Haruka Fuji, Yumi Fukushima and Tamano Inano.

In "The Map: Concerto for Cello, Video and Orchestra", Tan recreates for his audience a journey to his childhood home among the ethnic minorities in rural Hunan province. Western orchestral music is infused with the music of the region. By juxtaposing video footage of the folk musicians with live music, Tan creates a musical dialogue across cultures.

The nine movements in "The Map: Concerto for Cello, Video and Orchestra" reveals traces of Tan's memory of his childhood home from festive percussion of the Nuo (a form of masked ritual drama) and the Miao courtship songs to his encounter with an old stone drummer.

The performance was acclaimed by the Boston Herald: "This fluidity between the taped and live performances, between East and West, created a welcome, if idealized, sense of a world without boundaries." "The Map: Concerto for Cello, Video and Orchestra" features cello soloist Anssi Karttunen, who initiates an exchange with a videotaped Miao girl who listens and responds with song.

Winner of the Grawemeyer Award, Academy Award, Grammy Award and Musical America's "2003 Composer of The Year" award, Tan Dun has composed a distinct series of works that reflect his personal ideals. Among them are the "Orchestral Theatre" Series, bringing his childhood memories of shamanistic ritual into symphonic performances; "Organic Music" Series, consisting of works incorporating elements from the natural world, such as Concerto for Water Percussion and Orchestra, premiered by the New York Philharmonic with Kurt Masur; and "Concerto Multimedia" Series, including "The Map: Concerto for Cello, Video and Orchestra", premiered by the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Yo-Yo Ma with the composer conducting.

Opera has also played a significant role in Tan's creative output. "Tea", directed by Pierre Audi and commissioned by Japan's Suntory Hall, was set to orchestral music for ceramic, stone and paper instruments. His current commissions include a new opera for the Metropolitan Opera to premiere in 2007.

The Hong Kong Sinfonietta, founded in 1990 by a group of young musicians, has since grown in size and stature. Under the direction of Music Director Yip Wing-sie, the 58-member orchestra today performs for a full season and plays a leading role through interactive concerts for different age groups, while encouraging new dimensions in orchestral performance through different commissioned works.

"The Map & Paper Concerto: Tan Dun Organic Music with Symphonic Multi-media", one of the highlights of the "New Vision Art Festival", will be performed at 8pm on October 27 and 28 at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Concert Hall.

Tickets priced from $120 to $340 are available at URBTIX outlets. Half-price tickets are available for full-time students, senior citizens, people with disabilities and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance recipients. Group booking discounts are up to 20% off.

Programme brochures are available at URBTIX outlets or at the website,

For programme enquiries, call 2370 1044. Telephone reservations can be made on 2734 9009 and credit card telephone bookings on 2111 5999. Internet bookings can be made at .

Ends/Monday, September 6, 2004
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