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Chinese, US musicians team up

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PHILADELPHIA — Chinese musicians teamed up with their US counterparts on Tuesday at a special New Year concert in Philadelphia, the US state of Pennsylvania, to mark the 40th anniversary of China-US diplomatic relations.

About 100 musicians from the Shanghai Philharmonic Orchestra (SPO) and The Philadelphia Orchestra performed in the first side-by-side Chinese New Year Concert in Philadelphia.

Walter Douglas, deputy assistant secretary of state for public affairs and public diplomacy in the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs at the US Department of State, said it is important to have people-to-people ties.

The joint concert by the two orchestras is a good sign of people-to-people cooperation, which dates back to 1973, he said at a reception before the concert.

To mark the unique event, the two orchestras jointly proposed a distinctive East-meets-West program featuring the world premiere of the newly revised version of Peking Fantasy, a work co-commissioned by the two orchestras and composed by young Chinese composer Gong Tianpeng.

“Inspired by the artistic power of Peking opera, the crowning heritage of traditional Chinese performance art, Peking Fantasy incorporates the essence of Chinese culture with elements of western symphonies, hoping to introduce the traditional Chinese art to international audience in a more accessible way,” Gong told Xinhua.

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