2010 Archives

Works by SMU educator to premiere in Voices of Change concert

Performance scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Sunday, December 5


The following is from the December 2, 2010, edition of The Dallas Morning News.

About Sunday's Concert

Xi WangIntroducing the Music of Xi Wang will be at 7:30 p.m. Sunday in Caruth Auditorium in SMU's Owen Arts Center. Tickets are $30 and may be purchased online at online at www.voicesofchange.org or by calling 214-378-8670; admission is free with an SMU ID for students, faculty and staff. There will be a reception with Xi Wang and Laurie Shulman at 6:30 p.m. in Caruth.  

The concert will feature three works by Xi Wang. Echo • Poem • Image is a multi-media piece (music, dance, and visual effects) composed especially for the Voices of Change ensemble. Ideas from traditional Chinese arts provide a novel context throughout the work.

Also on the program is Xi Wang’s percussion duet, …Between…,  as well as her solo cello work, Rhapsody, which will be performed  by internationally acclaimed cellist and Meadows faculty member Andres Diaz.

In addition, the concert will include works by two of Xi Wang’s most influential teachers: a string quartet by Chen Yi, At The Kansas City Chinese New Year Concert,  and Steven Stucky’s solo piano work, Album Leaves, to be  performed by award-winning pianist and Meadows faculty member Carol Leone.

Also performing will be four Meadows dance students – Claire Cuny, Tenley Dorrill, Harry Feril and Amanda Owen.  The choreography mentor is Patty Delaney, associate professor of dance. And the lighting designer is Steve Woods, professor and head of stage design at Meadows.

New music ensemble Voices of Change is a community partner of the Meadows School of the Arts.

December 2, 2010

The Dallas Morning News

Little in Xi Wang's earliest years suggested a career as a classical music composer and professor.

She was born 32 years ago in a small Chinese town where her parents had been sent during the Cultural Revolution. When a piano was delivered to their home, all the neighbors turned out to watch.

"In the early '80s, a piano was a luxury thing," recalls Xi, who retains the Chinese custom of keeping her family name before her given name. (It's pronounced shee wong.) "Nobody there had seen a piano at that time."

  Her musical gifts had been evident early on, though, and she went on to get an undergraduate degree in composition from the Shanghai Conservatory, a master's from the University of Missouri-Kansas City  and a doctorate from Cornell University.

 Now in her second year as an assistant professor at Southern Methodist University's Meadows School of the Arts, Xi is being featured in a Sunday concert by Voices of Change, Dallas' new-music ensemble. The other two composers on the program were two of her composition teachers, Steven Stucky and Chen Yi. . .

Xi's initial musical studies were on piano, which she still plays, but at age 11, she was told that her hands weren't growing enough to tackle big romantic works.

"I could just play one octave. So they gave me two options: I could become a harpist or have some surgery.

"My parents didn't want to send me to surgery. But my Chinese teacher said I had good imagination, because my writing was very good – I could make up stories. She suggested composition."

Read the full story.

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