XJTLU Museum presents a series of lectures and activities on aspects of Suzhou culture for XJTLU students and staff to facilitate the cultural merge and interaction. Renowned artists, authors and scholars who are widely recognized for their achievements in Suzhou local culture will be invited to our lecture series. Here comes the ninth lecture of this series. XJTLU Museum invites Mingtao Wu, the fourth generation of Wumen Guqin Family, to give a lecture about Wumen Guqin appreciation to XJTLU students and staff.
- The fourth generation of Wumen Guqin Family;
- Member of Chinese Kun Opera and Guqin Research Association;
- The academic committee of Chinese National Institute of instrumental music professional Guqin director;
- Director of Suzhou Academy of Guqin; Vice president Wumen Guqin Club;
- Member of Suzhou Musicians Association.
Mingtao Wu was born in June 1978 in a Guqin family of Suzhou. He was tremendously influenced by his grandfather Zhaoji Wu and the atmosphere of the guqin family, so he showed his gift in terms of the guqin when he was young. At the age of ten, he started to learn the guqin from his grandfather, with the same playing style as his grandfather, gently, moderately, peacefully, quaintly, smoothly and vitally. He once was involved in CCTV documentary Chinese Garden as the director of the guqin art. Wu has also participated in special Guqin concerts organized by Suzhou municipal Party Committee Propaganda Department, Suzhou Literary Federation and other departments for many times. As well, CCTV and other mainstream media in China have given exclusive interviews to Wu. In 2009, Mingtao Wu established the Wumen Foundation Culture Guild Hall with his father Guangtong Wu in order to better inherit the skills of Wumen Guqin School and family literature.
Guqin, also known as peptachord, yuqin, silk tung, heptachord, which has at least three-thousand-year history. Ancient books have recorded many legends, for example, FuHsi and Shennong played the guqin, Yellow Emperor and Emperor Yao made the guqin. At first, the guqin has five strings, which is set by Shun. Then King Wen added another one to it. At last, King Wu determined the guqin as a seven-string instrument when he sent an expedition against the despotic ruler Zhou. Guqin, which represented the zenith of cultivated learning in ancient times, followed by chess, calligraphy and painting. As the most ancient instrument in China, the guqin has long been a favorite of the literati. The ancients were always lyrical about the guqin. The mournful sound of the guqin expresses the sense of regret. Seeking bosom friends with music expresses the sense of delight. Playing the guqin at a peaceful place is an expression of tranquil sense. The guqin was more of an individual instrument for solace and personal appreciation. There exists more than 33600 pieces of compositions, more than 130 pieces of scores and 300 pieces of songs at present. It spreads widely in Chinese culture community, such as China, North Korea, Japan and Southeast Asia. However, some musicians also have organized the guqin club in Europe and America. Guqin, the earliest plucked instruments in China, is not only the treasure in Chinese culture, but also the representative work of intangible cultural heritage.
The culture of Wumen Guqin goes back to ancient times. Wumen Guqin School is the inheritance and development of “Yushan” Guqin School. Lansun Wu is the member of “Yushan” Guqin School and his skill is rigorous and unadorned while the style is peaceful and meaningful. Jinyang Wu, the teacher of Zhaoji Wu, rooted in Shu faction, who was deeply influenced by living in south of the Yangtze River for a long time, his art of playing the guqin is natural and unrestrained. Zhaoji Wu has gained essential knowledge from his father Lansun Wu and his teacher Jinyang Wu and digest comprehensively. Moreover, he devotes himself to the research and practice in the combination of Qigong and Guqin, so that he established the Wumen Guqin School whose characteristic is simple, strong, clear and peaceful.
Chinese (Bilingual slides and onsite translation support from volunteers)
If you would like to reserve a seat, please register: send “Name +contact number+ I want to participate” to firstname.lastname@example.org.