Tan Dun: Ghost Opera

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Release Date
DescriptionExcerpt

Chinese-American composer Tan Dun melds Eastern and Western influences and explores spiritual themes in this five-movement piece for string quartet and pipa, featuring pipa virtuoso Wu Man. The Los Angeles Times calls it a “broad-minded, culture-bending opus.”

Description

Written by Chinese-American composer Tan Dun, Ghost Opera is a dramatic five-movement composition for string quartet and pipa—with vocalizations and percussive effects from water, metal, stone, and paper, performed by Kronos and Wu Man. The composition explores human spirituality, employing elements from Chinese, Tibetan, English, and American cultures, as well as a multitude of theatrical traditions. “Remarkable,” said the Los Angeles Times of the piece. “In this broad-minded, culture-bending opus, shards of Bach, Shakespeare, a bright pentatonic palette of Chinese origin and such sonic exotica as the water gong find peaceful and poignant coexistence.”

ProductionCredits

PRODUCTION CREDITS
Produced by Judith Sherman
Recorded January 1996 at Skywalker Ranch, Nicasio, CA
Engineer: Craig Silvery
Assistant Engineer: Chris Haynes
Mastered by Judith Sherman and David Harrington at SoundByte Productions, New York City

Art Direction and Design by Frank Olinsky
Cover: Cylindrical Vessel Supported by Three Rhinoceros (late 14th c. BCE) by Don Hamilton

Executive Producer: Robert Hurwitz

Nonesuch Selection Number

79445

Number of Discs in Set
1disc
ns_album_artistid
67
ns_album_id
201
ns_album_releasedate
ns_genre_1
0
ns_genre_2
0
Album Status
Artist Name
Kronos Quartet
MusicianDetails

MUSICIANS
Kronos Quartet:
David Harrington, violin, water bowl, bowed gong, vocals, one-stringed lute, cymbals, stones
John Sherba, violin, paper whistle, vocals, cymbals, stones, one-stringed lute, bowed gong, waterbowl
Hank Dutt, viola, vocals, cymbals, stones, bowed gong, water bowl
Joan Jeanrenaud, cello, vocals, bowed gong, water bowl

with
Wu Man, pipa, soprano voice, vocals, bowed gong, tam-tam, Tibetan bells, paper

Cover Art
UPC/Price
Label
CD+MP3
Price
0.00
UPC
075597944525BUN
Label
MP3
Price
5.00
UPC
075597944563
  • 79445

News & Reviews

  • As part of Kronos: Five Decades, the year-long celebration of Kronos Quartet’s 50th anniversary, the group is publishing five decade-spanning playlists curated by its founder and violinist David Harrington. The fifth and final playlist, featuring music Kronos performed in its fifth decade, 2013–2022, is out now. It includes music from their album A Thousand Thoughts; Folk Songs, with vocals by Sam Amidon, Olivia Chaney, Natalie Merchant, and Rhiannon Giddens; their Grammy-winning collaboration with Laurie Anderson, Landfall; and Terry Riley's Sun Rings. You can hear it here.

  • Kronos Quartet’s award-winning 1990 album Black Angels is now available on vinyl to coincide with Kronos Quartet: Five Decades, a year-long celebration of the quartet’s 50th anniversary, and Nonesuch Records' 60th anniversary. First released in 1990, the album features George Crumb’s title piece, which inspired David Harrington to found the quartet in 1973, and works by Charles Ives, István Márta, Thomas Tallis, and Dmitri Shostakovich. The fourth side of the vinyl is an etching of an illustration created especially for this purpose by Matt Mahurin, whose work is featured on the original album cover. The Evening Standard included Black Angels among its “100 Definitive Classical Albums of the 20th Century.”

Buy Now

  • About This Album

    Written by Chinese-American composer Tan Dun, Ghost Opera is a dramatic five-movement composition for string quartet and pipa—with vocalizations and percussive effects from water, metal, stone, and paper, performed by Kronos and Wu Man. The composition explores human spirituality, employing elements from Chinese, Tibetan, English, and American cultures, as well as a multitude of theatrical traditions. “Remarkable,” said the Los Angeles Times of the piece. “In this broad-minded, culture-bending opus, shards of Bach, Shakespeare, a bright pentatonic palette of Chinese origin and such sonic exotica as the water gong find peaceful and poignant coexistence.”

    Credits

    MUSICIANS
    Kronos Quartet:
    David Harrington, violin, water bowl, bowed gong, vocals, one-stringed lute, cymbals, stones
    John Sherba, violin, paper whistle, vocals, cymbals, stones, one-stringed lute, bowed gong, waterbowl
    Hank Dutt, viola, vocals, cymbals, stones, bowed gong, water bowl
    Joan Jeanrenaud, cello, vocals, bowed gong, water bowl

    with
    Wu Man, pipa, soprano voice, vocals, bowed gong, tam-tam, Tibetan bells, paper

    PRODUCTION CREDITS
    Produced by Judith Sherman
    Recorded January 1996 at Skywalker Ranch, Nicasio, CA
    Engineer: Craig Silvery
    Assistant Engineer: Chris Haynes
    Mastered by Judith Sherman and David Harrington at SoundByte Productions, New York City

    Art Direction and Design by Frank Olinsky
    Cover: Cylindrical Vessel Supported by Three Rhinoceros (late 14th c. BCE) by Don Hamilton

    Executive Producer: Robert Hurwitz

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