Wu Fei

Born: May 12, 1977    Primary Instrument: Composer/conductor

Wu Fei

Born and raised in Beijing, Wu Fei is a virtuoso composer, vocalist and guzheng (Chinese zither) performer. She spent her formative years at the China Conservatory of Music before coming to the US in 2000.

She holds a M.A. in Composition from Mills College and is a grant recipient of “Meet the Composer”. While at Mills, she began to diversify her sound and experiment widely, working with musicians like John Zorn, Fred Frith, Carla Kilhstedt, Béla Fleck, Pauline Oliveros, and Cecil Taylor.

Wu Fei's compositions for choir, string quartet, chamber ensemble, Balinese gamelan, orchestra, film, and modern dance exhibit her remarkable skill and profound musical understanding...
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Composer Fellowship, the Sally & Don Lucas Artist Residency by Montalvo Arts Center, 2009

"Yuan" Best Album of The Week - Alarm Magazine 11/25/2008

Debut record "A Distant Youth" ranked #88 out of 913 on World Music Chart Europe (critics pick) 2008

Best World Music Artist (2008) - Westword
”Soulful, lyrical and powerful music from this remarkable young composer/performer from Beijing!” - John Zorn, describing Wu Fei's latest album “Yuan”.

”Fei's playing on the guzheng is breathtaking.” -Fred Frith

”My soul undergoes a meltdown when Wu Fei's delicate guzheng figures remind us of the frailty of purpose amidst the often overwhelming forces of life.” - Paris Transatlantic Magazine

”...Wu Fei, a Chinese guzheng player who shocked the sold- out crowd with her slashing, skittering mastery of the zitherlike instrument...” -San Francisco Chronicle

”Composer Wu Fei , as evidenced by the five compositions on Yuan, occupies a world that straddles traditional Chinese music and more contemporary styles of writing and playing.” - All About Jazz New York

” In Wu's work evinces respect for tradition, an interest in what instruments can do, a strong sense of architecture, and good old fashioned showmanship. “-All Music

Wu Fei
Tracks: 1. Lou Lan 2. Red Carriage 3.Yuan? Yuan! Yuan... 4. She Huo 5. Before I Wake
Personnel: Stephen Drury: Piano
Wu Fei: Prepared Guzheng, Guzheng, Voice
Chen Tao: Dizi (bamboo Flute)
Melody of China
Percussions Claviers de Lyon
Shayna Dunkelman: Marimba, Tom-toms, Gong
Pan E-Qing: Pipa

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Chinese Guzheng, vocalist, old school composer still uses her pencils & staff paper even for orchestral music

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  • CD/LP/Track Review
    Yuan by Kurt Gottschalk
  • CD/LP/Track Review
    A Distant Youth by Eyal Hareuveni
A live recording in Venice of "Chun" by Wu Fei. From 2007 cd "A Distant Youth" (Forrest Hill). Footage from "Shan Qi" (dvd on Ozella Music). Directed by Giacomo Talamini, Arvmusic, Hive Division.

"She Huo" premiere at the Forbidden City Concert Hall, Beijing.

Wu Fei & Fulvio Maras sound check fun in Pavia, Italy

Interview by Danwei TV, April 2007, Beijing.
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