Bowed Strings


Erhu
Chinese bowed string instruments belong to the so-called huqin胡琴 family ("barbarian stringed instruments"), hu胡 meaning “barbarian” and qin “stringed instrument”. An instrument called xiqin奚琴 (“instrument of the Xi people”), is believed to be the ancestor of the family...read more



Plucked Strings


Pipa
The plucked string instruments can be classified through the positions in which they are played: horizontally (e.g. guzheng and yangqin) or vertically (e.g. pipa and ruan). They can be played by wearing artificial nails, by using plectrums or their strings can be stroked ...read more



Winds


Xiao


In Chinese music, the category of the winds includes a large variety of instruments, made of different materials (bamboo, wood, clay, etc.) and very diverse tone quality. According to the technique and the means used to blow air into their body, they can be divided into three types: instruments played by blowing air directly into the body (e.g. dizi, xiao)...read more



Percussion


Gong


In Chinese orchestra, both Western and Chinese percussion instruments are used in order to produce three different effects: rhythmic (to mark the tempo), decorative (to add drama to a passage) and melodic (to play melodies by means of definite-pitched instruments). Common Western instruments in Chinese orchestras are the timpani... read more