China’s National Centre for the Performing Arts Orchestra – Night Two

Saturday 25 March, 8pm Emirates Palace Auditorium


Date Friday 25 March, 8pm
Venue Emirates Palace Auditorium

China’s NCPA Orchestra is one of Asia’s finest orchestras. In their Arab World Debut conducted by Maestro Yi Zhang, the orchestra will present two sublime concerts. Night one features Tchaikovsky’s Slavonic March, Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No.2 with pianist Haochen Zhang and Dvořák Symphony No. 9 in E Minor. Night two features Bach’s Chaconne in D Minor, the prolific violinist Siqing Lü with The Butterfly Lovers Violin Concerto, a masterpiece by He Zhanhao & Chen Gang, and Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet Suite.

Download Abu Dhabi Festival’s music notes for this concert here


National Centre for the Performing Arts Orchestra

Residents of the National Centre for the Performing Arts, Beijing, NCPA Orchestra was established in March 2010 and performs in more than a dozen of its home venue’s opera productions every year, as well as in regular orchestral concerts in its own season.

The orchestra has gained critical acclaim for its performances in NCPA’s. In its orchestral concert season, it has consistently presented creative and diverse programmes. Their performance of the mammoth Ring without Words with its creator, Lorin Maazel, was released on SONY Classics worldwide, becoming the only recording the great maestro ever made with a Chinese orchestra. The orchestra has also extensively explored the dynamic world of contemporary music, giving the Chinese premieres of works by masters such as Toru Takemitsu and Giya Kancheli, and the world premieres of  works by some of the greatest composers working today, including Michael Gordon and Augusta Read Thomas,

The NCPA Orchestra has flexed its wings on the international stage, receiving widespread international praise for its performances at the Kissingen Summer Music Festival and the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival and concerts across Germany, as well as in Sydney, Singapore, Seoul, Daegu, Taipei and Macau. During the 2014/15 season, the orchestra undertook its first North American tour, where it performed in seven major cities in the US and Canada, under the baton of LÜ Jia.

Artists associated with the orchestra included Zubin Mehta, Valery Gergiev, Myung-Wha Chung, Christoph Eschenbach, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Fabio Luisi, Lang Lang, Stephen Kovacevich, Leo Nucci and Yuja Wang, among many others. Lorin Maazel worked closely with the orchestra before his passing and praised the musicians for their “amazing professionalism and great passion”.

Yi Zhang

Yi Zhang is one of the most influential young conductors in China, serving as Music Director, Chief Conductor and Deputy Director of the National Ballet of China.

He learnt to play the violin aged five and was later admitted to the prestigious Central Conservatory of Music, where he was taught by Professor Xu Xin and Professor Ji Ruikai. In 2003, he obtained his Master’s degree from the Saarbrücken HFM: Hochschule für Musik Saar, where he studied under the renowned German conductor Professor Max Pommer.

Yi Zhang has conducted hundreds of concerts, operas and ballets. During the past two decades, he has collaborated with many orchestras home and abroad, including China National Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, Saarbrucken Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre Colonne, Paris and Württemberg Chamber Orchestra.

He has also collaborated with numerous prestigious artists from Emmanuel Pahud, Wenzel Fuchs, Renaud Capuçon and Jean-Yves Thibaudet to Myung-wha Chung, Sarah Chang, Lang Lang, Chen Sa, Ning Feng and Qin Liwei.

Striving to make more Chinese music and musicians known worldwide, Yi Zhang conducted the recording of Ye Xiaogang’s symphony works New Music from China with Saarbrucken Radio Symphony Orchestra in 2002, released by Wergo (Germany). In 2013, he recorded works by Britten with London Philharmonic Orchestra and cellist Qin Liwei.

Fascinated by modern music, he has conducted many world premieres of Chinese and foreign works. In recognition of this dedication to contemporary compositions, he won the Award for Outstanding Contribution at the Beijing Modern Music Festival in May 2012.

Siqing Lü

Siqing Lü is one of the world’s most active violinists and, in 1987, became the first from Asia to win the prestigious Paganini International Violin Competition. Hailed by Strad as “an outstanding talent”, Siqing is acknowledged one of the most outstanding Chinese violinists of his generation. He has performed to acclaim in more than thirty countries throughout North and South America, Europe, Asia, has worked with many of the world’s leading musicians including Lorin Maazel, Valery Gergiev and Vladimir Ashkenazy and has appeared as featured soloist with some of the best orchestras in the world.

Siqing Lü has released many CD and video recordings for such labels as Philips, Naxos and Marco Polo, among others. He has made four recordings of the most famous Chinese violin work, Butterfly Lovers violin concerto. His interpretation has been widely considered the best among more than 40 available recordings and has sold well over a million copies worldwide.

Siqing Lü was born in 1969 in Qingdao, China and began violin study at four. As an eight-year-old, he was accepted by the Central Conservatory of Music as a special student – the youngest student ever accepted at the famed institution – and studied with Prof. Zhenshan Wang. At 11, Lord Yehudi Menuhin chose Siqing to study at his school in London. In 1984 he returned to China for advanced studies at the Conservatory in Beijing, and, five years later, he studied with Dorothy DeLay and Hyo Kang at the Juilliard School. In addition to the Paganini First Prize, Siqing Lü has won numerous international competitions.


Diamond AED 350, Pearl AED 250, Balcony AED 125
Early Bird Discount 25% off until 3rd December
Students 50% off (except Mozart & Son)
Special ticket packages available for groups of 10 or more, call the ticketing hotline.

Returned tickets may be available one hour before concerts in the Emirates Palace Auditorium; please check with the ticket desk in the foyer. Abu Dhabi Festival management cannot guarantee the availability of returned tickets.