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Title: About Jiebing

Life in Pictures: In the Navy

Later in the Chinese Cultural Revolution, the only professional musical groups were the military orchestras. When Jiebing was nine years old, the Chinese Navy held auditions for orchestra members. Although the Navy's minimum age was 18, Jiebing's father had her audition.

The Navy was so impressed with Jiebing's Erhu playing that they made the remarkable exception to accept her into the orchestra. They made this choice in spite of her young age of 9 and the "politically incorrect" background of her family.

Jiebing spent the next 13 years playing leading instrumental parts in Chinese political operas and, as the Cultural Revolution ended, a wide range of Chinese music.

An early Navy portrait. Jiebing at the age of 14 with the family of the Navy Orchestra Director. This became Jiebing's family during her time in the Navy. Jiebing visiting home at the age of 13. Her father insisted that she continue practicing.
Jiebing at 12. Jiebing at 15 in a classic Cultural Revolution pose holding Chairman Mao's writings. Jiebing visiting Tiananman square.
Jiebing at 16. Jiebing at 18. Jiebing at sea.
Jiebing performing with the the Yang-qin (hammered dulcimer) at the 1982 National Erhu Competition, in which she won first place honors. In this competition she performed "The Parting of the Newly wed". Xiang Zhang, the admiral who originally accepted Jiebing into the Navy Orchestra with his daughter in 1988. He died shortly after this picture was taken.

By 1984 Jiebing had attained the rank of Major.


Double Concerto for Erhu and Violin

by Gang Situ

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Moon Reflecting on Er Chuan Spring

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Click here for an introductory lesson in holding and bowing the erhu.

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