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Published on May 30, 2013
Live Performance with St Olaf Orchestra, Steven Amundson, conductor Gao Hong, pipa, Sunday, March 6, 2011 3:30 p.m. Skoglund Center Auditorium, Northfield, Minnesota.
Flying Dragon Concerto based on Gao Hong's solo composition Flying Dragon, the concerto version was commissioned by the American Composers Forum's Jerome Composers Commissioning. Gao Hong was born in the Year of the Dragon. When she was little her mom asked a fortuneteller who revealed to them that because of the time and date she was born, she was a "flying dragon." Her life has paralleled several of the characteristics associated with a flying dragon - constantly being on the move, never being settled, never being certain of where your home is, never knowing what your future will bring. Gao left her family at age 12 to become a professional musician and avoid the severe consequences of the Cultural Revolution. She has since moved further and further from her hometown - first to a neighboring province, then to Beijing, Japan, and finally the United States. In this concerto she explores the mixed emotions and confusion brought on by her nomadic lifestyle that continues to leave her uncertain of what her future will bring. She reflects upon the constant struggles and challenges in a life filled with both hardship and happiness as well as a constant need for inner strength.