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Huang Ruo

Huang Ruo

Country of origin: China
Birthday: 1976

Upcoming Performances

City of Floating Sounds
Conductor: Jonathon Heyward
Orchestra: Festival Orchestra of Lincoln Center
July 23, 2024 | New York, NY (United States of America) , Lincoln Center
City of Floating Sounds
Conductor: Jonathon Heyward
Orchestra: Festival Orchestra of Lincoln Center
July 24, 2024 | New York, NY (United States of America) , Lincoln Center

About Huang Ruo

Huang Ruo’s diverse compositional output includes works for orchestra, chamber music, opera, theater, and dance, cross-genre compositions, sound installations, architectural installations, multimedia, experimental improvisation, folk rock, and film. His vibrant and inventive musical voice draws equal inspiration from Chinese ancient and folk music, Western avant-garde, experimental, noise, natural and processed sound, rock, and jazz to create a seamless, organic integration using a compositional technique he calls “Dimensionalism.” He has been lauded by The New York Times for his “distinctive voice...melding Asian and Western elements with such confidence and elegance that you hardly notice the mingling."

His music has been premiered and performed by the New York Philharmonic, The Philadelphia Orchestra, Boston Symphony Orchestra, The Cleveland Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Netherlands Radio Philharmonic, National Polish Radio Orchestra, Santa Fe Opera, Washington National Opera, Houston Grand Opera, LA Opera, Seattle Opera, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Royal Danish Opera, Asko/Schoenberg, Ensemble Modern, London Sinfonietta, and conductors such as Wolfgang Sawallisch, Marin Alsop, Andrew Davis, Michael Tilson Thomas, and James Conlon.
 
Huang Ruo's opera, An American Soldier (with a libretto by David Henry Hwang) was premiered by the Opera Theatre of St. Louis in June 2018 and was named one of the best classical music events in 2018 by The New York Times. His installation opera Paradise Interrupted was premiered at the Spoleto Festival USA in 2015 and was performed at the Lincoln Center Festival in 2016. Another opera, Dr. Sun Yat-Sen, premiered at the Santa Fe Opera in 2014. His recent new opera M. Butterfly (with a libretto by David Henry Hwang) received its world premiere with the Santa Fe Opera in 2022. Future commissions include new operas for the Metropolitan Opera and the San Francisco Opera, and an interactive global city project that integrates live orchestra, technology, movements of people, expanding the boundaries of orchestral music far beyond the walls of a venue and into the city. Huang Ruo served as the first composer-in-residence for Het Concertgebouw Amsterdam and was the visiting composer for the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra in Brazil.  

Huang Ruo was born in Hainan Island, China in 1976 – the year the Chinese Cultural Revolution ended. His father, also a composer, began teaching him composition and piano when he was six years old. Growing up in the 1980s and 1990s, when China was opening its gates to the Western world, he received both traditional and Western education at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. As a result of the dramatic cultural and economic changes in China in the 80s and 90s, his education expanded from Bach, Mozart, Stravinsky, and Lutoslawski, to include the Beatles, rock and roll, heavy metal, and jazz. Huang Ruo was able to absorb all of these newly allowed Western influences equally. After winning the Henry Mancini Award at the 1995 International Film and Music Festival in Switzerland, he moved to the United States to further his education. He earned a Bachelor of Music degree from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, and Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees in composition from The Juilliard School.

Huang Ruo is a member of the composition faculty at the Mannes School of Music in New York and is the artistic director and conductor of Ensemble FIRE. He was selected as a Young Leader Fellow by the National Committee on United States–China Relations in 2006. Huang Ruo’s music is represented exclusively by European American Music Distributors Company (ASCAP) and the Schott Music Group of publishing companies worldwide.

Worklist

Chronology

1976

Born on Hainan Island, China.

1989

Attends Shanghai Conservatory of Music (Pre-College).

1995

Wins Henry Mancini Award from the Gstaad Film and Music Festival.

2000

Co-founds the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE).

2000

The Philadelphia Orchestra and conductor Wolfgang Sawallisch premiere Three Pieces for Orchestra.

2000

Receives a Bachelor of Music degree in Composition from Oberlin College and Conservatory.

2002

Receives a Master of Music degree in Composition from The Juilliard School.

2003

Miller Theatre features Huang Ruo on its Composer Portrait series, with the composer conducting the International Contemporary Ensemble in the premiere of his complete Chamber Concerto Cycle, later released on Naxos in February 2007.

2006

Named “Young Leader Fellow” of the National Committee on United States-China Relations.

2008

Receives a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Composition from The Juilliard School.

2013

Folk Songs for Orchestra is premiered by the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Carolyn Kuan.

2014

Joins the composition faculty at The Mannes School of Music of The New School in New York City.

The Santa Fe Opera presents the US premiere of Huang Ruo’s first opera, Dr. Sun Yat-Sen.

Houston Grand Opera presents the world premiere of Huang Ruo’s second opera, Bound.

Washington National Opera premieres Huang Ruo’s third opera, An American Soldier (one-act version) at The Kennedy Center.

2015

The Spoleto Festival USA presents the world premiere of Huang Ruo’s fourth opera, Paradise Interrupted.

Named the first composer-in-residence of Het Concertgebouw Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

2016

The Lincoln Center Festival presents the New York premiere of Paradise Interrupted.

The Singapore International Festival of Arts presents the Asian premiere of Paradise Interrupted.

2018

Opera Theatre of St. Louis presents the world premiere of An American Soldier (full-length two-act version).

The New York Times names An American Soldier one of the best classical music events in 2018.

2019

Asian premiere of Folk Songs for Orchestra by the BBC Symphony Orchestra and conductor Andrew Davis as part of its China tour.

Visiting composer of the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra of Brazil which gave the South American premiere of The Color Yellow and Shattered Steps under the baton of Marin Alsop.

2021

Ars Nova Copenhagen and conductor Paul Hillier give the world premiere of Book of Mountains and Seas, Huang Ruo’s sixth opera, at Royal Danish Opera.

2022

Book of Mountains and Seas receives its US premiere at St. Ann’s Warehouse in NYC.

Book of Mountains and Seas receives its Dutch premiere at Muziekgebouw, Amsterdam.

The Washington National Opera presents the world premiere of Huang Ruo’s seventh opera, The Rift, at The Kennedy Center. The work is a 50th anniversary celebration commission.

World premiere of Huang Ruo’s fifth opera, M. Butterfly at The Santa Fe Opera.

2023

World premiere of Angel Island, Huang Ruo’s eighth opera, at The Singapore International Festival of Arts.

The NCPA Orchestra presents the world premiere of The Butterfly Exchange at the National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing.

Chinese premiere of The Color Yellow at the Poly Theatre in Beijing as part of the Beijing Music Festival.

Asian premiere of Book of Mountains and Seas at the Hong Kong New Vision Arts Festival.

Products

Performances

Set Descending Direction
  • City of Floating Sounds
    Conductor: Jonathon Heyward
    Orchestra: Festival Orchestra of Lincoln Center
    July 23, 2024 | New York, NY (United States of America) , Lincoln Center
  • City of Floating Sounds
    Conductor: Jonathon Heyward
    Orchestra: Festival Orchestra of Lincoln Center
    July 24, 2024 | New York, NY (United States of America) , Lincoln Center
  • Set Descending Direction