Fu I

Given the traditional sound world of Taiwanese-born and Boston-based Shih-Hui Chen’s 1999 composition Fu I for solo pipa, it’s hard to believe that this was the first piece that she ever composed for a traditional Chinese musical instrument. Curiously, it was created almost concurrently with a pipa concertante Fu II, written for the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, which is also featured on the disc. It was tough choosing only one of these works to attempt to wax poetic about here, but I finally opted for the solo, reveling in how it completely blurs the line between traditional Chinese music and contemporary American composition.

—FJO

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