University Of Tasmania
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Historical development of the pipa

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posted on 2023-05-27, 14:55 authored by Wei, D
The Pipo is a traditional plucked instrument, and originated from two separate precursors. The first type of Pipa consisted of two major forms: the Qin Pipa and the Han Pipa. According to the historical records, the first type of Pipa appeared in ancient times (about 214 BC - 105 BC). The Qin Pi pa was an embryonic instrument and was developed from a percussion instrument called the Tao Gu. The Han Pipa was based on other older plucked instruments, such as the Qin, Se, Zheng and Kun Hou. The first type of Pipa was named the Ruan Xian in the seventh century AD. The second type of Pipa originated in the Western Region. It came to northern China around the fourth century AD, and was introduced to southern China in the middle of the sixth century AD. This kind of Pipa had two major forms: the Crooked-neck Pipa and the Five-stringed Pipa. However, the Five-stringed Pipa disappeared from China around the tenth century AD. Only the Crooked-neck Pipa was developed on a larger scale. Since Chinese ancient music traditions and Western Regions music tradition came together, the two kinds of Pipa influenced each other. Gradually, the Crooked-neck Pipa was replaced by the Classical Pipa. Historical material indicates that this process was completed around the fourteenth century AD. Up to the nineteenth century, a wealth of traditional Pipa music was accumulated. The development of the Pipa in the twentieth century was greatly influenced both by Chinese folk music and western music of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The Classical Pipa was replaced by the Contemporary Pipa in the 1950s, and Chinese musicians have continued to make great advancements in all areas connected with the Contemporary Pipa. The first chapter investigates, from a wide range of Chinese source material, the earliest historical backgrounds of the Pipa; the second and third chapters examine the development of the two precursors of the modern Pipa; chapter four focuses on the emergence of the single Classical Pipa, and in the final chapter the Contemporary Pipa is studied in terms of major structural developments, changes to playing techniques and its influence on present-day Chinese compositions.


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Copyright 1987 the author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We would be pleased to hear from the copyright owner(s). Thesis (MMus)--University of Tasmania, 1987. Includes bibliographical references.

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