The guqin (古琴)is a Chinese musical instrument of the zither family with over 3000 years of history. Developed as an elite art form by Chinese literati, the guqin was favored for the aesthetics of its music that emphasized elegance, subtlety and serenity. It is listed at the top of the four traditional arts followed by qi (ancient form of chess), calligraphy and painting. In 2003, the guqin, together with its music was proclaimed by UNESCO as one of the Masterpieces of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
Dr. Tse Chun-Yan (謝俊仁) is a distinguished guqin musician and composer in Hong Kong. A harmonica player from the age of six, he later studied guzheng and Chinese music theory and composition. He learned to play the guqin in 1983 and since then, he has given numerous public performances in Hong Kong and abroad. Dr. Tse graduated from the Faculty of Medicine of The University of Hong Kong in 1973. After retiring from his medical profession in 2005, he obtained his Ph.D in Ethnomusicology in 2009 from The Chinese University of Hong Kong, researching on guqin scores of the Ming and Qing Dynasties. He now teaches at the Music Department of The Chinese University of Hong Kong and the School of Music of the Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts.
Dr. Tse will give an introductory talk on this classical instrument and perform several exemplary pieces including "Running Water" (流水), "Three Variations on the Plum Blossom" (梅花三弄), "Memories of an Old Friend" (憶故人), and "Drunken Elation" (酒狂). To enhance this afternoon’s literati music program, Anita Wong, Curator of UMAG and a connoisseur of Chinese tea, will offer participants freshly brewed premium Chinese teas from her private collection and impart insights on the appreciation of Chinese tea.