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Press Release


Jean Oelrich
Director of Marketing & Communications
(714) 876-2380

Pacific Symphony and Bowers Museum offer “A Feast for the Senses”: Chinese music and dinner interlaced with special exhibition, “China’s Lost Civilization”

Orange County, Calif. — January 28, 2015

Pacific Symphony, in partnership with Bowers Museum, presents “A Feast for the Senses,” an enchanting evening of Chinese music, dining and discovery surrounding the Bowers’ current special exhibition, “China’s Lost Civilization: The Mystery of Sanxingdui.” An upscale and one-of-a-kind experience, guests are treated to a fusion of music and history as Symphony musicians are interwoven between mysterious artifacts, performing music curated by Chinese American composer Huang Ruo and featuring world-renowned pipa player Zhou Yi. The ancient jades, cast bronzes and life-size statues of the exhibition were found in Sanxingdui and date to about 1200 B.C. The “Lost Civilization” has been termed “the ninth wonder of the world” and is claimed by scholars to be one of the greatest archaeological finds ever unearthed. After seeing the museum’s collections and enjoying a reception of music and art, guests enter the John. M. Lee Court to hear a performance of music by Huang Ro, as well as taste an authentic Sichuan Province-inspired dinner and dessert presented by Bowers’ award-winning restaurant, Tangata. This event is sponsored by The James Irvine Foundation as part of its New California Arts Fund initiative.

Taking place on Saturday, Feb. 7, at the Bowers Museum, the music, exhibition and reception begin at 6:30 p.m. The dinner and performance starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $100 and include museum admission. Advance reservations are required by Tuesday, Feb. 3. Tickets may be reserved onsite at Bowers Museum, online at, or by calling (714) 567-3677.

“First of all, as an artistic adviser to Pacific Symphony, I am thrilled to help bring together Pacific Symphony, pipa player Zhou Yi and the Bowers Museum to create this sensational program: Feast for the Senses,” says Huang Ruo. “One of the many unique attributes

of the evening is that audiences will get to see the artwork while hearing the music and tasting the delicious regional cuisine at the same time. The music I specifically chose for this event not only echoes both the art and cuisine, but is also spiritual, energetic, emotional, playful and beautiful.”

Musical selections by Huang Ruo include “In Other Words” and “Flow” performed by Pacific Symphony musicians: Concertmaster Raymond Kobler, Principal Second Violinist Bridget Dolkas, cellist Kevin Plunkett, clarinetist Joshua Ranz, bassoonist Elliott Moreau, and guest of Huang Ruo, Jude Traxler on percussion. Zhou Yi also performs solo pipa throughout the evening including the traditional piece, “Ambushes from All Sides.”

 “Zhou Yi is a member of my ensemble FIRE based in New York. Comprised of both Western and Eastern instruments, the ensemble has been performing together for many concerts. Zhou Yi is not only technically excellent, but also full of personal magical touches when playing music,” continues Huang Ruo.

Awarded the Luxembourg International Composition Prize, Huang Ruo has been cited by The New Yorker as “one of the world’s leading young composers” and “one of the most intriguing of the new crop of Asian-American composers.” His vibrant and inventive musical voice draws equal inspiration from Chinese ancient and folk music, Western avant-garde, rock and jazz to create a seamless, organic integration using a compositional technique he calls “dimensionalism.” Huang Ruo’s writing spans from orchestra, chamber music, opera, theater and modern dance to sound installation, multi-media, experimental improvisation, folk rock and film. Ensembles who have premiered and performed his music include the New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Seattle Symphony, National Polish Radio Orchestra, Kiel Philharmonic Orchestra, Hong Kong Philharmonic, Washington National Opera, Houston Grand Opera, New York City Opera, Opera Hong Kong and Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. Huang Ruo’s opera “Dr. Sun Yat-Sen,” was recently given its American premiere by the Santa Fe Opera in 2014, and will be given its Canadian premiere by the Vancouver Opera in 2016. His next opera is “Paradise Interrupted,” commissioned and premiered by the Spoleto Festival USA in 2015 and performed at the Lincoln Center Festival in 2016.

Praised for her “breathtaking” meticulous technique and expressiveness by The Washington Post, pipa (lute) virtuoso Zhou Yi started to learn music at the age of 5. After graduating from the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, she moved to New York. As a concert soloist, her performances include Tan Dun’s Concerto for Pipa and String Orchestra at the Gewandhaus in Leipzig, Germany; Young People’s Concert with the New York Philharmonic; and Bun-Ching Lam’s Pipa Concerto “Song of the Pipa” and “Sisters of the Grassland” with the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra (Ohio). Zhou Yi collaborated with Damon Albarn (Gorillaz/ Blur) in Spoleto Festival’s premiere show, “Monkey: Journey to the West.” Her recent performances include: featured pipa soloist of Tan Dun’s “Map” in 2014 NYU’s Vision & Voices Series; played pipa and guqin with the Santa Fe Opera for the new contemporary production “Dr. Sun Yat-Sen” composed by Huang Ruo; recorded the music for David Henry Hwang’s two Off-Broadway productions, “The Dance and the Railroad” and “Kung Fu (The Bruce Lee Story).” She also worked on “Around the World in 80 Days” and Carnegie Hall’s “Musical Explorer” program. Zhou Yi is a co-founder of the Ba Ban Chinese Music Society. She currently resides in New York.

Pacific Symphony is led by Music Director Carl St.Clair, who celebrates his milestone 25th anniversary season with the orchestra. The largest orchestra formed in the U.S. in the last 50 years, the Symphony is recognized as an outstanding ensemble making strides on both the national and international scene, as well as in its own burgeoning cultural community. The Symphony has played a central role in the phenomenal growth of the performing arts in Orange County. Presenting more than 100 concerts a year at the Renée and Henry Segerstom Concert Hall in Costa Mesa, as well as a rich array of education and community programs, the Symphony reaches more than 275,000 residents each year—from school children to senior citizens.

Office: 3631 South Harbor Blvd. Suite 100, Santa Ana, CA 92704

Box Office: (714) 755-5799

The Bowers Museum has earned an international reputation through its world-class exhibitions, including Warriors, Tombs and Temples: China’s Enduring Legacy, Terra Cotta Warriors: Guardians of China’s First Emperor, Secrets of the Silk Road, and Mummies – Death and the Afterlife: Treasures from the British Museum, as well as its own extensive art collections from throughout the Americas and the South Pacific. Additionally, the Bowers’ Kidseum, located one block south of the main museum, offers a high-tech and interactive focus on its new mission of “Igniting Imagination Through Exploration” spotlighting the excitement of art and archaeology.

Bowers Museum, in Santa Ana, is centrally located in the heart of Southern California.

Address: 2002 North Main Street, Santa Ana, CA 92706

Tickets and Information/ (714) 567-3600

Group Tours: / (714) 567-3680

Membership: / (714) 567-3639