Wu Man, Zhang Family Band perform traditional Chinese music

Grammy-nominated pipa virtuosa Wu Man and the Zhang Family Band will perform Saturday, March 10 at the MIM Music Theater.

Grammy-nominated pipa virtuosa Wu Man joins the lively Zhang Family Band to perform old-tune traditional Chinese music with shadow puppetry 7:30 p.m., Saturday, May 10, at the Musical Instrument Museum Music Theater, 4725 E. Mayo Blvd.

The “high-energy” concert features Wu Man on the pipa, which is a flute-like instrument with a history of more than 2,000 years in China, according to a press release. Members of the Zhang Family Band sing and play traditional instruments such as the yueqin, banhu, erhu, clappers, small gongs, cymbals, and a large gong.

Amidst shouts and instrumentals, the band sings and acts out stories of life in rural China with shadow puppetry, the press release notes. This type of performance mainly happens in the Shaanxi Province, in a small village in the city of Huayin, so it is exciting to have the show in Phoenix.

Wu Man has given the pipa a new role in traditional and contemporary music and has played with global artists from the Kronos Quartet to Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble. In 2013, she was named Musical America’s Instrumentalist of the Year.

In 2008, she was the first Chinese traditional musician to receive the United States Artists Fellowship, and was the first artist from China to perform at the White House, the release described.

Both Wu Man and the Zhang Family Band are featured in the documentary The Music of Strangers: Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble.

MIM Music Theater 2018 Concert Series is sponsored by Sanderson Lincoln. Circle of Friends donors who give $500+ annually are eligible for 10 percent off concert tickets.

Tickets range from $53.50 to $63.50. Visit MIM.org or call  480-478-6000 to purchase tickets.

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