| Ancestral Tune
(wind band 2012) [12’00”]
World-premiered by Tao Yuan Symphonic Band with Amy Chang conducting, at the Tau Yuan Recital Hall, Taiwan on November 27, 2013.
The piece was inspired by the unbreakable spirits of Hakka ancestors during their continuous migrations to explore new territories and to protect homelands, which the composer is profoundly moved and admires. With motifs from the traditional “Old Mountain Song” and “Dapu Tune,” the music contains the following five sections:
This work is an endeavor to combine wind orchestra and Hakka Eight Tones. Hakka Eight Tones is an traditional musical art form of the Hakka people, commonly used for weddings, funerals, and other occasions. Therefore its musical styles, performance forms, contents, and instruments possess strong characteristics of the traditional Chinese folk music. This composition is based on the traditional folk music, but develops into an innovative exploration with the Western musical techniques. Hakka Eight Tones is closely tied to social rituals, from welcome of newborns, marriage, birthday celebration for the elderly, to funeral. The progression of rituals, the gratification for gifts, and the celebration with music represent deeply rooted cultural appearances and social relationships, symbolizing the emotions and yearnings for auspice, heritage and ancestry. Hakka Eight Tones is often performed as background music. Although its music is based on a simple rustic melody, the performers often have ample room for improvisation. Once combined with Western wind instrumentation, the music is significantly diversified in tone and enhanced in volume. More room is opened up for exploring musical forms, textures, and dynamics. For the composer, however, it is quite challenging to resolve issues pertaining to tuning, timbre, balance and coherence. This piece was commissioned by Tao Yuan Symphonic Band.