Programs, Classes & Private Lessons

Chinese Classical Music Studies

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Calgary is a global platform for music, as the city is home to many culturally diverse communities. Eager to promote Eastern Classical music studies at Mount Royal Conservatory, we are excited to announce that students interested in Chinese classical music now have to opportunity to study Erhu, Dizi, Guzheng, and voice at the Taylor Centre for the Performing Arts. China has a historically rich musical tradition whose influence has had far reaching impact - inspiring the work of composers and musicians throughout the world.

Erhu, a two stringed bowed instrument, is one of the most popular and versatile Chinese musical instruments. Capable of playing lyrically beautiful melodies or high energy virtuosic works, the erhu can be heard in traditional as well as contemporary music, even being featured as a solo instrument with western style orchestras.

Dizi is a Chinese transverse flute made of bamboo. The dizi is an expressive instrument and widely used in Chinese folk music, Chinese opera, and is a key instrument in today's modern Chinese orchestra. Students will enjoy exploring the energy and brilliance of the dizi under the instruction of Jiajia Li a passionate and active flute performer who plays both dizi and western transverse flute. -Video of Jiajia Li playing Flower Under the Moon.

Guzheng, the Chinese zither, is a plucked string instrument with a rich history. The guzheng is the most commonly played Chinese classical instrument due to the instruments ability to accompany as well as be a featured melodic instrument. Repertoire for this instrument is broad and takes advantage of the unique sound and character of the instrument. Guzheng Group Classes

Voice As with all forms of music around the world, the voice is a key musical element, capable of infusing music with text. Ancient and modern Chinese poetry has inspired composers across history resulting in a wealth of music for voice that touches on every emotion and aspect of life, making the voice the most expressive of instruments.

Private lesson rates for Chinese Classical Instruments for the 2017/2018 season are $30 per 1/2 hour.
To register contact 403-440-6821 or fill out the Conservatory's lesson placement form.

Instructor Bios

Yumeng Wang was born in China and began learning erhu at the age of four. She was admitted to the Associated Elementary School of the Central Conservatory of Music in 2000 where she was tutored by Professor Yan Jiemin and from where she graduated a year ahead of schedule. In 2012, she got the scholarship of U of C and start her master degree in erhu performance with professor Agopian and Yu Hongmei.

Yumeng has received numerous scholarships and awards including first place in the “Renshou Cup” National Children Competition (1999), first prize in the first “Tian-Tian Cup” Inter-communication Competition (2003), Silver Award in the 2nd Erhu Competition of National Instruments (2005), Gold Award in the Chinese Instruments International Competition---Professional Youth Category, USA (2010) and one of the winners of annual Concerto Competition concert with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra (2014)

Yumeng has taught erhu in a number of schools in China. She performed as erhu soloist as part of the welcoming celebration for the NBA’s visit to China (2004) and as host and erhu soloist in concerts in Singapore (2007). She performed as erhu soloist for the U of C Chamber Music Festival, Calgary Chinese New Year Festival, Consulate General of the People's Republic of China's Event, Spring Festival Gala Evening, Duanwu Festival, Banff World Media Festival and Chinese Music Night (2013), etc. She is now hired to teach on erhu at the department of Music in U of C. She has performed in the China Chinese Instrument Youth Orchestra, Taiwan Little Giant Chinese Silk and Bamboo Ensemble, Henan Chinese Instrument Ensemble and Calgary Chinese Orchestra, etc.

Jiajia Li - Award-winning flutist Jiajia Li is currently a director and member of Timepoint Ensemble, Impasto Duo, and is a substitute player with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra. A three-time scholarship recipient from the Banff Centre “Musician in Residency Program”, Jiajia is an active soloist and chamber musician and has recently appeared on stage at Calgary New Music Festival and “The Works” Art & Design Festival in Edmonton. 

Jiajia grew up in a musical family in China. She began playing the Chinese bamboo flute under the influence of her mother - the 4th generation Wang style pipa master. She always loved the unique sound of the instrument and how it contrasted with the western flute. Jiajia kept playing dizi and performing across the sea. During her studies in Germany, she formed a small Chinese ensemble “Jasmin Flower” and performed at different festivals. Now living in Calgary, the music ambassador never stops advocating her own culture. She recently produced and starred in the show for the 22nd-year anniversary of the Chinese Cultural Center. Jiajia studied with Dizi masters Dai Ya and Hou Chang-qing.

Shirley Wong is the founder and leader of Harmony Guzheng Ensemble. As a full time instructor of Guzheng (Chinese zither), Shirley provides both private and small group Guzheng lessons to students of all age groups.

Shirley was a student under the Guzheng master Xu Nengqiang for many years. With the recognition of her talents and potentials, Master Xu recruited Shirley to become a teacher in the Hong Kong Guzheng Performers Association in 2005.

When Shirley moved to Calgary, she independently started performing and teaching. She further developed her career and founded the Harmony Guzheng Ensemble. To date, she had successfully led Harmony Guzheng Ensemble into three full house Guzheng concerts in 2012, 2014 at Rozsa Centre and 2016 at Bella’s Concert Hall. Her young students have received many awards in various music competitions and achieved excellent grades in the instrumental examinations conducted by the Central Conservatory of Music of China. Her impact was not only limited to the younger generations, her adult students have enjoyed her mentorships and friendship while enriching their lives with the beautiful guzheng music.
When Shirley is not teaching, she loves to share her music with others by volunteering in community and cultural events, visiting and providing entertainment in senior homes, and even bringing the Harmony Guzheng family into the great outdoors of the Rocky Mountains.

In her time outside of teaching and sharing Guzheng, you will find Shirley in her garden tending various vegetables and flowers. She is also a loving mother to her children and loves to spend quality time with her family.

Xue Jia (Shana) Yang was a university graduate in China, majoring in vocal music & choral conducting. She taught university level courses, directed and conducted several well known choirs after graduation, and has since accumulated over 20 years of experience in vocal training and choral conducting. She had received many provincial and national awards in singing and choral conducting in China.

Shana has been teaching private lessons in singing focusing not just on singing techniques but also on stage performances. Many of her students had received awards and recognitions in singing competitions in Canada and abroad. She is the founder of the Calgary Zhi-Yin Choir, and has been the conductor and vocal teacher of the Choir since the group’s inception in 2004. Under her leadership, the Choir has become highly respected in the local Chinese Community, and has received invitations to perform in Edmonton, Vancouver and New York with excellent feedback
 

Wei Chi Vicky Su is the founder and President of the Alberta Chinese Zither Association. Vicky earned a Master of Education degree in Educational Leadership from the University of Calgary and a degree in Chinese Ku Zheng (Chinese Zither) Music from the National Taiwan University of Arts (formerly known as the National Taiwan Academy of Arts). She has represented her country on the world stage in Germany, Hungary, Australia, Singapore, Canada, USA, and other countries in promoting Chinese Ku Zheng music.

Before immigrating to Canada in 1997, she was the principal Ku Zheng performer of the BCC (Broadcasting Corporation of China) Chinese Music Orchestra in Taipei, Taiwan. (The BCC Orchestra has the longest history of any Chinese orchestra founded prior to the Chinese Civil war of 1949.) As a soloist, Vicky has been invited to perform "Autumn Yearning" by the Dresser (妆台秋思) with Master of Chinese Flute ( Dizi ) Yu Xunfa 俞遜發, the first Chinese flautist to perform at the National Theatre and Concert Hall in Taipei, Taiwan. She has also performed at State Banquets of the Republic of China (Taiwan), recorded Ku Zheng as background music for movies and TV dramas, and been invited to adjudicate for national high school music class auditions in Taiwan. Since moving to Calgary in 1997 Vicky has done many Ku Zheng performances, including debuting her compositions and performing in events such as school presentations, as well as speaking about Chinese traditions and music at conferences.

She is a creative and enthusiastic educator, having begun her Ku Zheng teaching career at the age of 19 shortly after her performance at a the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hall, a national concert venue. Aside from music education, Vicky held a position for many years as principal and teaching instructor at the Chinese School of Calgary and the University of Calgary, disseminating knowledge of Chinese culture and language.

In her daily life Vicky enjoys studying religion, philosophical works such as those of Lao Zi, Chinese literature and poetry, and Cha Dao (The Way of Tea).