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Zhou Long Biography

Zhou Long

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Born: 1953. Living in: China

Born into an artistic family, Zhou Long began studying piano from an early age. Due to the artistic restrictions implemented during the Cultural Revolution, he was forced to delay his piano studies and live on a rural state-run farm where he operated a tractor in the fields. The deserted landscapes with horrible winds and fires experienced during the Cultural Revolution made a deep impression and influence his compositions even today. Nearing the end of the Cultural Revolution, he was able to resume his musical studies in the areas of composition, music theory, conducting and also traditional Chinese music. Only one year after the end of the Cultural Revolution, Zhou Long was one of one hundred students chosen from eighteen thousand applicants to study at the newly reopened Beijing Central Conservatory in 1977. From 1977-1983, he studied composition with Wu Zu-qiang.

After graduating in 1983, Zhou Long was appointed with the position of composer-in-residence with the National Broadcasting Symphony Orchestra of China. With only a brief stay in this position, Zhou Long journeyed to the United States under a fellowship to attend Columbia University and further his composition studies with Chou Wen-chung, Mario Davidovsky, and George Edwards, receiving a Doctor of Musical Arts in 1993. Living in Brooklyn, New York, he became the music director of Music from China, a group founded in 1984 with the aim of presenting concerts of traditional Chinese music in the United States. Under the direction of Zhou Long, Music from China expanded its original goals to also encompass contemporary Chinese works that reflect both Chinese and Western sound worlds and musical languages. After a decade of devoted artistic ingenuity, Zhou Long was given the ASCAP Adventurous Programming Award in 1999.

In 2002, Zhou Long served as the composer-in-residence Music Alive!, the Silk Road Project Festival of the Seattle Symphony Orchestra with Yo-Yo Ma. He currently holds the position of Visiting Professor of Composition at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music. From 2004-2005, Zhou Long was invited to be the composer-in-residence at the Cleveland Institute of Music. He has additionally provided many masterclasses and lectures at Brooklyn College, Columbia University, UC Berkeley, the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, and several of the top conservatories in the United States. Zhou Long has expanded his works from the music world to reach other artistic genres, collaborating with H.T. Chen, Chiang Chin, Gao Xingjian, Loni Ding, Ellen Perry and several others.

Zhou Long has been a citizen of the United States since 1999 and is married to the composer-violinist Chen Yi.

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