Lee’s “Young Impressions” evokes his youth in Beijing

Posted on: January 7, 2010

In Monday’s (1/4) San Jose Mercury News (California), Richard Scheinin writes, “The composer Gordon Lee, an ebullient character with shoulder-length hair and an eruptive laugh, is sitting in the small studio at his Cupertino home—crammed with saxophones, Chinese string instruments and a tall array of Chinese gongs. He flips through a treasured volume of photos of Beijing as it looked so many decades ago, and his early years seem to jump into cinematic focus. … Those winding streets have become symbols for Lee of the curlicueing sequence of events that have led him to his latest achievement: the Symphony Silicon Valley premiere next weekend of his new symphonic suite, ‘Young Impressions of the Old City.’ … He believes ‘Young Impressions of the Old City’ is the first ‘triple concerto’ of its kind—composed for Western orchestra and showcasing three soloists playing ancient Chinese instruments: the pipa, a plucked, four-stringed lute; the erhu, a bowed, two-stringed fiddle, its sound eerily approximating the human voice; and the sheng, a mouth organ with a warm, mellow personality.”

Posted January 7, 2010