Interview: Musical Polymath Min Xiao-fen

Composer and Pipa Virtuoso Min Xiao-fen Blurs Lines of Style, Origin and Genre

Friday, January 27, 2012

As part of our China in New York festival, from Monday, January 23 to Friday, January 27 at 12 noon with repeats at 7 pm on Q2 Music, composer Huang Ruo interviews a different Chinese-born composer who has lived in the United States and become prominent to New York City audiences.

Born in Nanjing, composer, singer, and pipa player Min Xiao-fen has become a fixture on the new-music, jazz and Chinese traditional musical scenes. Collaborations with such artists as John Zorn, Christian Marclay, Randy Weston, DJ Spooky, and Derek Bailey attest to her relentlessly exploratory spirit and open-minded approach to improvisation and music-making. 

In this interview with composer (and frequent collaborator) Huang Ruo, Min discusses her family's musical background, her understanding of the similarities between Iraqi court and Chinese traditional music, and the first time she heard the music of Thelonious Monk.

The complete Q2 Music China in New York festival interviews

Monday, January 23 at 12 noon and 7pm: Zhou Long
Tuesday, January 24 at 12 noon and 7 pm: Du Yun
Wednesday, January 25 at 12 noon and 7 pm: Lei Liang
Thursday, January 26 at 12 noon and 7 pm: Chou Wen-chung
Friday, January 27 at 12 noon and 7 pm: Min Xiao-fen 

Hosted by:

Huang Ruo

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