“Common Home” presented by Shanghai Chinese Orchestra
As one of the important performances of the 20th China Shanghai International Arts Festival, the original concept of “Common Home” presented by Shanghai Chinese Orchestra was staged at the Shanghai Grand Theatre on November 5 and 6, 2018. Relying on the traditional Chinese philosophy of “The Harmony of Heaven, Earth, and Human-beings,”, this concert focused on constructing the community concept of human destiny and innovatively integrates Haipai folk music with various representative music of the five continents to show the transformation of human history and the development of civilization. It calls on all human beings to join hands to build an earth home that is open, inclusive, co-constructed and shared.
The four chapters of the concert — “The Source of All Things”, “The Light of Civilization”, “The Harmony of All Things” and “Common Homeland” — are based on the ancient wisdom of the heavens and the earth; 109 performers are on the same stage, deducting 13 pieces of works all together; 67 kinds of musical instruments were unveiled one by one, using music to cause audiences to think about human origins, the development of civilization, social change, and world integration.
From the mysterious far-off polar winds to the red-hot Sahara, from the life of African drumming to the flames of flamenco, the Chinese national musical instrument is openly embraced. This instrument has a passionate dialogue with the national musical instruments of South Asia, such as the South Asian Tabla drum, the Irish tin whistle, the Spanish guitar, the Russian grand piano, and the African drum. The ingenious integration of music and digital multimedia will also bring a new audiovisual scene. “Common Home” strives to play the classic music of the world's five continents through a variety of national musical instruments, embodying the artistic conception of a “Happy World” and “Big Beauty” by using music to build a community of human destiny and embracing the beautiful world with music.
The music style of “Common Home” is positioned as “world music”, which is a challenge for the creative team and the performers. The vastness of world music and the variety of musical instruments used by various nationalities make it difficult to screen songs and musical instruments as well as to find ways to form sparks with traditional folk music. At the beginning of this concert, the orchestra encouraged and promoted young composers and performers to participate in the creation of the performance and in rehearsals, breaking the stylized single creation and performance mode, deepening mutual understanding and mutual wisdom, and repeatedly scrutinizing and trying to bring the artist's “artisan spirit” to the extreme.
Ethnic music carries the wisdom and civilization of the national tradition and also bears the spiritual outlook of the new era. From “Sea Life Folk Music” to “Scorpion Flower Blossom”, from “The Bund Story” to “Common Homeland”, in recent years, Shanghai Chinese Orchestra has been rooted in tradition, constantly exploring and innovating to further develop the creative space of folk music and the spirit of opening, innovating, and pursuing excellence in Shanghai folk music. At the same time, Shanghai Chinese Orchestra plays a more important role in promoting the integration and development of world music on the road of contemporary music and internationalization.