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Chinese music

Modern History

Throughout the political and social turmoil following World War I, Western (classical and popular) and Japanese sources dominated Chinese music. At present, Western concepts of harmony are in active use but are generally applied to vocal genres, such as cantatas and music dramas, which have educational as well as musical value. The Beijing Opera has produced numerous new works since 1949, most of them concerning political topics. It is one of the few forums of traditional performance style, although there is an ongoing effort directed by the Beijing Institute of National Music to preserve the few remainders of ancient musical practice.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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