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Office of International Students Room 1507, International Students’ Apartment Central Conservatory of Music No.43, Baojia Street, Xicheng District, Beiijng, China, 100031
The Conducting Department of Central Conservatory of Music(CCOM) was established in 1956, which qualifies it the oldest conducting-teaching department in China. As the only conducting department in all music conservatories in China for a long time, it has cultivated numerous outstanding well-known conductors and made great contribution to the creation and development of conducting science. The Conducting Department of CCOM, famous for its “highest productivity of conducting talents” and strict management, is the cradle for many domestic music groups and music elites. Almost all students here perform excellently. It has trained more than 20 music directors, chief conductors and leaders of celebrated orchestras or opera houses. A large number of famous conductors have graduated here, including: Chen Zuohuang, Shao En, Hu Yongyan, ShuiLan, Wang Jin, LvJia, Yu Feng, Yang Li, Li Xincao, Zhang Yi, Zhang Xian, Yang Yang, Chen Lin, Xia Xiaotang, etc. Among its outstanding students, nine won the prize for 13 times in different international competitions; and five achieved the top three for 7 times in the national conducting competition held only three times till now.
The teaching system initially adopted the strong points of conducting teaching pedagogy from former Soviet, Europe and America. Based on the teaching practice of over five decades, the department gradually formed the advanced teaching system with Chinese characteristics under the leadership of its successive and present department chairmen: Huang Feili, ZhengXiaoying, XuXin and Yu Feng. This system is featured by academic and learning rigorousness, united and open teacher-student relationship, and successive and developing teaching pedagogy.
The Conducting Department is aimed at cultivating outstanding conductors, organizers, and leaders in the filed of collective music performing arts (opera, symphony, and chorus, etc.). As the advanced talents in music, the conducting talents are trained in a special way: the major courses of each student are taught by three teachers individually; other specialized courses are also offered in support of conducting teaching, including: score reading, advanced sight-singing and ear-training, double-piano symphony playing, choral theory, band rehearsal, harmony, polyphony, work analysis, orchestration, and modern work analysis, etc. In addition, the Conducting Department also attaches great importance to morality education and personality construction of its students.
The Conducting Department now is equipped with 19 teachers and two teaching and research sections-conducting section and piano duet accompanying section. The conducting section is staffed with 11 major conducting-course teachers, responsible for teaching orchestral conducting, opera conducting, choral conducting, Chinese traditional instrumental conducting, and score reading, etc. The piano duet accompanying section, with its 8 teachers, is mainly in charge of the major courses of piano duet accompanying teaching, and is also devoted to cultivate talents (graduates) in double-piano symphony playing. The education of conducting is divided into four levels: the education of the middle school and high school affiliated to CCOM, undergraduate education, master education and doctoral education. About 35 students are educated in the Conducting Department now in this four levels.
The Conducting Department provides the five-year undergraduates with two majors: conducting and sound art direction. Three majors are offered to masters: conducting, score reading and double-piano playing. Only one major now is open to the doctors in Conducting Department: orchestra conducting.
Since it was established, bearing an inclusive and flexible principle, the Conducting Department has embraced the most outstanding conductors of every period to teach in this department. Most teachers have an experience studying in Europe or America, and have the ability and experience to win the first place in domestic or international conducting competitions. As the elites in conducting, they are full of creation, bear excellent personal charisma and have great love towards students. Through the teachers’ painstaking cultivation, many student, after graduation, have worked as the artistic directors in symphony orchestras or opera houses both at home and abroad, becoming the bright new starts in conducting field. After more than half a century’s hardworking, the devoted and pioneering teachers has brought our conducting teaching to a “domestically-leading and worldly-advanced” new stage.
The previous faculty includes the most outstanding conductors and educators in China, such as Huang Feili (the first Chair of Conducting Department), Li Delun, Han Zhongjie, Chen Yixin, ZhengXiaoying (former Chair), XuXin (former Chair), Li Huade, Wu Lingfen, and Yang Hongnian. The present major-course faculty members include: Professor Yu Feng (the present Chair), Professor Yang Hongnian, Professor Yangli, Professor Lin Tao, Associate Professor Chen Lin, Associate Professor Xia Xiaotang, Associate Professor ShenHao, and Associate Professor Li Xincao, etc.
Modern Conducting Teaching Pedagogy
In recent years, Under the leadership of Prof. Yu Feng, the teachers in Conducting Department have developed the “Modern Conducting Teaching Pedagogy”, which becomes the core teaching method in conducting teaching. The Modern Conducting Teaching Pedagogy identified 21 concrete conducting techniques and band operation method theory, minimized the gap between classroom learning and orchestra operation, cleared the obstacles between theory learning and conducting practice, and also saved the cost of orchestra teaching. This Pedagogy can help students find the mistakes in orchestra performance correctly and quickly, teach students to analyze the work from the composer’s perspective, and cultivate their necessary moral quality, artistic charm, organizing skill and leadership ability, and social skills as professional conductors. The Modern Conducting Teaching Pedagogy lay a solid foundation for the creation of Conducting School in future China.The present Chair prof. Yu Feng has been frequently invited to America, Austria and Japan to giving conducting classes, and he will have a lecture about the Pedagogy in American conducting annual meeting. With the rapid spread and increasing influence of this Pedagogy overseas, the Conducting Department of CCOM has attracted many American and European masters and doctors to study here, thus change the previous situation where only Chinese students went to study aboard. The media regards this phenomenon as “a prelude for westerners to learn Beethoven in China”. Under the implementation of Modern Conducting Teaching Pedagogy, six students in Conducting Department have won two gold awards and one silver award in the big international competition and achieved the top three in domestic competition. The teachers in Conducting Department are thus invited to America, Austria and Japan to teach the Modern Conducting Teaching Pedagogy, and some are hired by famous American Conservatories of Music. The Pedagogy won the second prize of Outstanding Teaching Achievement Award of National Higher Education in 2005.
China Conducting Association
In 2004, Under the advocation and promotion of the late Prof. XuXin, the Conducting Department, as the national conducting academic center, established China Conducting Association, founded the academic journal Conductor and China Conducting Association website, and embraced almost all the Chinese (both at home and aboard) professional conductors as its members. The Association has held a series of conducting salons and academic lectures, which started an open and flourishing era for Chinese conductors and Chinese conducting circle. The students in Conducting Departments can get in touch with the most excellent orchestras and conductors when they studying in school, get the best learning resources, and set a clear goal for their future development. All these achievements strengthened the Conducting Department's leading place in Chinese conducting circle.