Ancient Naxi Music

Last updated by elysees at 2014/8/22

The Ancient Naxi Music is a living musical fossil of human civilization; it contains sacred cultural heritage of Chinese history and has great importance in Chinese cultural development as well as the world music industry.

The Naxi people live in the area of "three parallel rivers" northwest of the Yunnan province. They enjoy the lifestyle of being very close to the nature and wild lives, and they are born talent dancers and singers. Thanks to the unique geographic and natural environment of Lijiang City, the diversified culture groups have been living in harmony.

The Naxi music reflects the rich cultural diversity; it is deeply rooted and widespread in the social, economic and daily lives among Naxi people. Naxi music would be performed in various forms like wedding songs, banquet performance, entertaining musicals, funeral dirges and so on.

Ancient Naxi Music

They have achieved great success and gained tremendous support and popularity. They were then invited to the UK and Norway attracting tens of thousands of fans, creating quite a phenomenon and raising much international attention.

The Glamour of the Ancient Naxi Music

Although people could hear Naxi music in restaurants taxis and many other places, when listening to the music in this hall they will still be shocked.
Naxi Ancient Music is moving. Visitors could feel nature, peace and tranquility when listening to Naxi Ancient Music. It has been passed down through a set of rigorous rules.

Many of the musicians are in their 80s or 90s now. The instruments used in the performance are also aged, such as the sugudu, pipa, reed pipe, bamboo flute, huqin, sanxian, Chinese gong chimes, wooden fish and inverted bell and so on. This is the Chinese "Buena Vista Social Club".

Tourists have enjoyed the performance of Naxi music a great deal, thus in recent years it became part of the official tourism program of the Lijiang tour. These old artists not only just play in Lijiang, but they have been invited to perform in Kunming, Guangzhou, Beijing and Hong Kong and overseas such as British, France, Norway and Finland. Old people performed old music with old instruments. It was not often to get an opportunity to experience it.

The Structure of the Ancient Naxi Music

Naxi ancient music has a special charm thanks to the integration of Taoist ritual music, Confucian ceremonial music and the literary lyrics, poetic topics and musical tones of the Tang, Song and Yuan Dynasties. The music originally consists of three parts: Baisha Fine Music, Dongjing Music and Huangjing music, the last of which has long been lost in the river of time.

Baisha Fine Music enjoys a history more than 1,200 years, the main part of which is an instrumental ensemble. Singing and dancing also include in it. The music is mainly played on funerals and grand sacrificial rituals.

Dongjing Music is a special genre of Taoist music and Naxi folk music the former of which was introduced to Lijiang from the noble class of the Central Plains during the Ming and Qing Dynasties. Besides its nature purity and elegance, Dongjing Music incorporated the Naxi musical essence, styles and the skills that were used in performances of the Naxi ethnic group to create a charming folk flavor which can be easily appreciated by everyone.

Deeply rooted and affected the social, economic and daily lives among Naxi people, it became the most well-preserved musical form across China. Dongjing Music was originally court music for the noble class, but now every people may have a chance to hear it.

Visiting Information

Adress: Naxi Ancient music hall, Sifang Steet, Gucheng District, Lijiang 674100, China
Admission Fee: 160 yuan(A Ticket); 140 yuan(B Ticket); 120yuan (C Ticket)
Recommended visit time: 1.5 hours
Show Time: 20:00-21:30

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