Honored Chinese harpist at Woodstock's Autumn Fest
The Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival was held again this year at the Woodstock Branch Library on the afternoon of September 22. Library Assistant Amber Houston scurried about, preparing for their special musical bilingual Storytime.
Our music today is provided by an award-winning musician, who is certified to teach guzheng, and is named Hai Bi, Houston told THE BEE.
The guzheng is a Chinese plucked zither, Hai explained. It dates back around 2,500 years. It has 18 or more strings, and movable bridges. Like most Eastern instruments, the musical scale is pentatonic– five tones.
Hai has twice won first prize in the Shanghai instrumental solo guzheng competition. He has performed and taught guzheng for many years, and has been awarded the Chinese national level guzheng teaching accreditation. Here in Portland, where I am going to school, I perform with the Orchids and Bamboo Ensemble, he informed us.
As Houston read the story for the children and families in the Woodstock library, in both Mandarin and English, Hai played a passage that musically illustrated the chapter.
Then, it was time for everyones favorite – almond cookies.
This is a good way to celebrate the second-most important traditional Chinese holiday, Houston smiled.
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