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Chinese Instruments
• Qin is a seven-strings zither
• Qin was established by the time of the Tang dynasty(618-907).
• Qin has three categories of pitch:
– 1 . Harmonic
– 2 . Open-strings notes
– 3 . Pressed notes
• Qin’s function at ancient time.
– 1. Enjoyment.
– 2. Associated tool.
• The Qin in the modern time
• The famous Qin pieces:
1 Meihuasannong (Plum Blossoms in Three Variations)
2 Guanshanyue (Moon over the Mountain Pass)
• A four-string, pear-shaped plucket lute
• Pipa’s history: originally imported from Central Asia in Han
• Pipa: was originally used to as a generic term to name all kinds of
plucketed lute
* The Bent-neck pipa
* The Straight -neck pipa
* The Straight-necked lute
• Performance methods and skills
• Famous pieces
* Great ambuscade
* Moonlight over the Spring River
• A three-string plucket lute: oval body, long unfretted neck
• Where can you see sanxian: primarily in narrative music as the
major accompanying instrument, as in traditional operas
• Types of sanxian:
* Larger model
* Smaller model
• History: first mentioned in China during the Yuan dynasty (early
fourteenth century)
• A bridged long zither
* Size: approximately 3 feet
* Number of strings: varying, but 16-stringed zheng has been the most
popular one in recent 200 years
• History: dated back to Zhou and Han dynasties (sixth century B.C.)
• Modern time: most popular of common-practice instrument in
• Features:
* Tuned to pentatonic scale
* Applying pressure for vibration and pushing to obtain non-pentatonic
• Famous pieces:
* Creek in High Mountains
* Song of the Fishermen’s Light