Music in Chinese Culture


Music has always held a prominent position in Chinese Culture, wherein the beginning was made right from the ancient times. Historians have found that musical notes started being recorded from the time when Confucius propounded his philosophy, and ever since then, there have been variations of folk music in different regions and time periods of Chinese history. The beginning was made with Reed Instruments, and later on these evolved into metallic ones as new metals were found, and the art of molding was discovered.

As far as dynasties are concerned, the first Chinese dynasty to have ever patronized music was the Zhou Dynasty. This was a type of folk music that was written in short pieces, and had a corresponding ceremonial dance associated with the same. Musical pieces were written for various purposes and occasions. Some were played and sung with lyrics in the praise of the rulers, while others were meant to commemorate victory. Yet many other songs were composed during the Harvest Season, for celebrating the bountiful crops and then there were dances and songs that were exclusively meant for marriages. Some of the most important musical instruments during the ancient times in China were the Pipa, Sheng, Xiao and Guqin. While some of these have become obsolete and are available for display only in museums today, others have evolved into the modern instruments that we know of today.

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