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The Art of the Chinese Harp - Guzheng

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Album Review

A handful of U.K.-based classical Chinese performers here present a surprisingly thorough look over the music of China's vast regions, with the guzheng harp (really a very large zither) as the focal point of the proceedings. Accompanying lead Xiao Ying's guzheng are a pair of fiddles and the occasional flute or secondary zither. The music ranges from pastoral items to paeans from Tibet, to stereotypical Cantonese silk-and-bamboo music, all performed at the highest ability. For those who love virtuosity, make a special note to listen to the speed on "General's Order," from the same genre as the better known "Hero's Fall" and "Ambush" for the pi'pa. This album makes a fine primer for an introduction to Chinese classical music, and an enjoyable listen for those already acquainted with the form as well.

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