Refrain Hsiao-Lan Wang

for yangchin and tape

Yangchin (Chinese dulcimer) has long been a major leading instrument in Chinese chamber music. Its rich timbre and dramatic performing tradition make it a true excitement to experience both aurally and visually. So far, very few pieces involving yangchin have been composed in contemporary style, even fewer electro-acoustically. It is a real challenge for me to compose in such a new medium for such an old instrument. As a yangchin player myself, I am able to compose for its extreme capabilities within a rational structural scheme.

In the yangchin part, idiomatic writing was applied to preserve the traditions developed in the past centuries. Also required, are new techniques that are uncommon in traditional writing, used to broaden the capacity of this beautiful instrument. In the tape part, most samples were collected from the instrument itself. After manipulation and editing, I managed to create different shapes and textures, which extend the sonic potential and add to the variety in this piece.

Refrain has been selected by Sonic Circuits (2001), featured on SEAMUS (2002) and Electronic Music Midwest (2002), and radio broadcasted by Dutch National Radio (2002).

  • Year of composition: 2000
  • Hardware used: Mac, Kurtzweil 2500
  • Software used: Sound Designer II, SoundMaker, Peak, Sample Cells, Studio Vision, ProTools
  • Duration of the submitted work: 8:31
  • Production: impact

Linked project

More works by Hsiao-Lan Wang