Tan Dun’s Nu Shu: The Secret Songs of Women
for harp and orchestra with 13 micro films will feature in premiere performances all around the world within the next year. Co-commissioned by three top-name orchestras, Japan's NHK Symphony Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, this dramatic and historically relevant piece premiered with the NHK Symphony in Tokyo in May 2013, followed by the North American premiere with the Philadelphia Orchestra in October. Nu Shu
is now bound for China (May), Australia (September), and its first European performances (January).
Nu Shu: The Secret Songs of Women
|In one stroke, Tan Dun honors the sacrifices and achievements of the past, and connects it to the future…Tan Dun has given [the lives of women] an artistic expression worthy of its magnitude. — Tom Purdom, Broad Street Review|
is a deeply researched creation that reveals an extraordinary disappearing vocal and linguistic tradition which passed exclusively between generations of women since the 13th century in Hunan, China. Nu Shu
fluently marries anthropology, musicology, history, and philosophy. Thirteen distinct “micro films” — projected on-screen about the lives of mothers, daughters, and sisters as derived from Tan Dun’s field recordings — serve as the conceptual and visual center of the composition. Both a heartrending and enlightening work, harp and orchestra blend this experience into a beautiful holistic message.
To catch Nu Shu
, check out the Philadelphia Orchestra’s tour
to China in May, visit the prestigious Australian OzAsia Festival
in September, or join the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
in January 2015.