A Melting Dialogue of Shakuhachi with Chinese Poetry


This is a stage-based Shakuhachi music project that employs Classical Chinese Poetry in Yue chanting technique, together with other stage effects to generate a Zen-like experience.


We explore traditional Chinese culture with a modern perspective, whilst retaining the four themes that are often used to depict Zen philosophy – Pine-trees, Wind, Water and Moon.


We have chosen poems from the Tang and Song Dynasties that depict Zen ideas as the foundation of our creativity. Using the delicate tones of the Shakuhachi to interpret how the ancient Chinese literati used poems to express the indescribable Zen.

On one hand, the performance reminds us of the history of the Shakuhachi which was taken to Japan in the Tang and Song dynasties; and on the other hand, it explains why the Shakuhachi music was applied in many Zen studies in the old days.


In order to highlight Shakuhachi music, the performance will be accompanied by images, sound effects and lighting to strengthen the stage effects of performing poetic Zen art; letting it reverberate in the depths of people's minds; enriching the audience experience and feeling the charm of Tang and Song art.


The performance will also be shared with the audience through the vivid explanation of the relationship between Shakuhachi and the poetry; inviting the audience to share their immediate feelings and allowing a direct interaction with the performers!

Demo Video

Cantonese Poem in video

 A Hut in the Deer Grounds by Wang Wei

The mountains appear uninhabited with not a person in sight, 
Yet I hear people talking. 
Light reflects and penetrates deep into the woods, 
Shining on once shady moist moss.

Click to hear the demo : 

Unknown Track - Unknown Artist
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Chinese Poetry

Chinese poetry is poetry written, spoken, or chanted in the Chinese language. While this last term comprises Classical ChineseStandard ChineseMandarin ChineseYue Chinese, and other historical and vernacular forms of the language, its poetry generally falls into one of two primary types, Classical Chinese poetry and Modern Chinese poetry.

Classical Chinese poetry includes, perhaps first and foremost shi (詩/诗), and also other major types such as ci (詞/词) and qu (曲). There is also a traditional Chinese literary form called fu (賦/赋), which defies categorization into English more than the other terms, but perhaps can best be described as a kind of prose-poem. During the modern period, there also has developed free verse in Western style. Traditional forms of Chinese poetry are rhymed, however the mere rhyming of text may not qualify literature as being poetry; and, as well, the lack of rhyme would not necessarily disqualify a modern work from being considered poetry, in the sense of modern Chinese poetry. For example, lines from I Ching are often rhymed, but may not be considered to be poetry, whereas modern verse may be considered to be poetry even without rhyme. A cross-cultural comparison to this might be the Pre-Socratic philosophical works inancient Greece which were often written in verse versus free verse.

Show Informations

Performers: 2

Production members: 5-6

Duration: 70-90 mins (No intermission)

Context :

Part 1 - Shakuhachi & Chinese Potery

Part 2 - Shakuhachi meet with local Artists 

Part 3 - Interactive with audiences