A performer and composer, Gao Hong is also music performance activities coordinator at Carleton College. She graduated with honors from the Central Conservatory of Music, China's premier music school, where she studied with pipa master Lin Shicheng. In 2005, she became the first traditional musician to be awarded the prestigious Bush Artist Fellowship, and in 2008, she became the only musician in any genre to win three McKnight Artist Fellowships for Performing Musicians. Gao Hong is director of the Carleton Chinese Music Ensemble which is comprised of Carleton College students. The ensemble features Chinese traditional bowed strings (erhu, zhonghu), plucked strings (pipa, zhongruan, guzheng), winds (dizi and hulusi) and percussion instruments.
To celebrate the launch of UMD’s new Confucius Institute, Gao Hong, world-renowned Chinese pipa soloist, and Carleton College’s Chinese Music Ensemble will perform on Sat., Jan. 21 at 3 pm in Weber Music Hall. The concert is free and open to the public.
The Confucius Institute, named for the Chinese philosopher known for encouraging deep independent thought and the study of the outside world, promotes the study of Chinese language and culture. The University of Minnesota Twin Cities (UMTC) established a Confucius Institute in 2008 through a collaborative initiative between the University of Minnesota, the Hanban/Confucius Institute Headquarters, and the Capitol Normal University in Beijing.
The UMD Confucius Institute, one of 67 in the U.S. and nearly 400 world-wide, is a satellite of the UMTC Confucius Institute and will serve Northeast Minnesota. It will offer programs and resources to educators in the region, especially in K-12 schools.
The UMD Confucius Institute will sponsor lectures and performances that will be open to the public. "It will be a good opportunity for the community to take advantage of cultural programs that they might not otherwise be exposed to," said Leigh Neys, director of both UMD’s Confucius Institute and the International Education Office.
The UMD Confucius Institute will also offer workshops for regional business people interested in doing business in China. "I hope it will bring a greater awareness of the economic opportunities involved in relations with China," Neys said.
For more information about the event or UMD’s Confucius Institute, contact Leigh Neys, 218-726-7053.
Written by Kathleen McQuillan-Hofmann, January 2012.