Concerts from the American Folklife Center, Library of Congress, 2013-2014

May 21, 2015 at Noon, No Tickets Required

Bing Xia

Coolidge Auditorium

Bing Xia, Director of the Washington Guzheng Society, is an accomplished soloist and teacher of the Chinese guzheng. The guzheng, or zheng, is a plucked zither that is thought to be about 2500 years old (“gu” means “ancient” and has been added to the name zheng to indicate the great age of the zheng). The instrument changed over time, as the earliest guzheng had twelve strings, while the modern instrument has twenty-one to twenty-five strings. The guzheng is the ancestor of all Asian long zithers. The instrument is traditionally tuned to a pentatonic scale, though other scales are sometimes used.

Born in China, Bing Xia began studying the guzheng at the age of eight and studied music and guzheng at Nanjing Normal University and the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. After moving to Maryland, Bing Xia became a featured performer in the "Music in the Age of Confucius" program presented by the Smithsonian Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery in the summer of 2000, and in the "Asian Song Festival" at the Kennedy Center in May, 2003. Her performances have been broadcast by both NPR and Voice of America nationwide. She has performed as a soloist for many concerts and special events throughout the Washington DC metropolitan area, including the first Chinese Cultural Festival and the Washington Millennium Celebration in 2000, the Kennedy Center, the DC City Council, the Department of Energy, the IMF, the FCC, the FDA, the Smithsonian Institution, the University of Maryland, the Strathmore Music Center, the Export-Import Bank of the United States, the Secret Service, George Mason University, and the Black Rock Performing Arts Center. She was a featured performer in a concert held by the Embassy of the People's Republic of China for vice premier Qian Qichen and Secretary of State Colin Powell. She has also performed in Richmond, Virginia; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and Bangor,  Maine.

This concert is co-sponsored with the Library of Congress Asian American Association in celebration of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month.

A free noon concert series presented by the American Folklife Center and the Music Division of the Library of Congress. Most concerts are held in the Coolidge Auditorium (located on the Ground Floor of the Thomas Jefferson Building of the Library of Congress) or the Whittall Pavilion (next to the Coolidge, on the Ground Floor, Jefferson Building). Occasionally, concerts may be in other locations, which will be specified above in the concert description. Presented in Partnership with the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage. NO TICKETS REQUIRED.