A study of Ningwu Du’s 24 Piano Preludes

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Baiyun Zhou (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
John Salmon

Abstract: The piano started to become an important instrument in China at the beginning of the 20th century. Chinese piano music started to flourish immensely since then. Chinese composers developed their own musical styles for the piano by mixing Western compositional techniques and forms with Chinese elements and approaches. Ningwu Du (1967--), one of the most distinguished Chinese composers and pianists of the new generation, has had a significant impact on the recent evolution of Chinese piano music. Although Ningwu Du is well-known in his native nation, he is relatively obscure outside of China. The set of 24 Piano Preludes is one of Ningwu Du's most representative and remarkable compositions in Chinese style. The 24 Piano Preludes are based on traditional Chinese music and poetic culture and incorporate Western musical forms, harmonic language, and compositional techniques. Ningwu Du composed the 24 Piano Preludes utilizing 24 major and minor keys, and each prelude is accompanied by a poem written by the composer himself. This dissertation will focus on how Ningwu Du integrates his own compositional technique with poetry and the prelude genre. The first chapter introduces Ningwu Du and his 24 Piano Preludes, while the second chapter discusses the historical background of preludes and Chinese piano and outlines the Composer’s career journey. Chapter Three summarizes the Chinese cultural and social background that Ningwu Du inherited. The fourth chapter provides musical elements of Ningwu Du’s 24 Piano Preludes; the fifth chapter includes a comprehensive analysis of each prelude in this set, while the final chapter brings everything together by restating the objective of this dissertation. Ningwu Du’s distinctive approach to composition sets him apart from other Chinese composers. It is the author’s hope that this dissertation will allow for greater understanding and hopefully, worldwide promotion of these works.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2022
Chinese Composer, Chinese Culture, Piano Performance
Du, Ningwu $x criticism and interpretation
Canons, fugues, etc. $x Analysis, appreciation
Preludes $2 lcgft

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