Hope and the Future in Liang Xiao

Liang Xiao (良宵) or Chu Ye Xiao Chang (除夜小唱) was written on 22 January 1928, on the eve of the Lunar New Year while Liu Tian Hua was having a quiet and relaxed evening with his friends and students.

Zhu Chang Yao playing Liang Xiao

It is the custom of the Chinese to usher in the New Year with a whole night of merry-making.  Crackers would go off in the streets while others stay at home with family and friends celebrating the end of the winter and the coming of spring and a new year.  Such was the atmosphere which we find Liu Tian Hua penning one of his most cheerful pieces of music for the erhu.  This was also the period in which Liu Tian Hua was in the peak of his development for traditional music in China.

The "Guo Yue Gai Jin She" (國樂改進社) had been set up, the musical journal "yin yue za zhi" (音樂雜誌) started publication.  The very first music conservatory in modern China, Guo Li Yin Yue Yuan (國立音樂院) opened in Shanghai and at that point, the future looked promising to Liu Tian Hua.

The little work was an impromptu piece penned at the height of his feelings of joy and contentment, and in it depicted also his hopes for the future.

An arrangement of Liang Xiao for the string ensemble.

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