China National Centre for the Performing Arts Orchestra
China NCPA Orchestra is the resident orchestra of the National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA), Beijing. Established in March 2010, the orchestra performs in more than a dozen opera productions in its home venue every year as well as in regular orchestral concerts in its own season. Lü Jia took up the post of chief conductor in 2012 and became NCPA's Artistic Director of Music and Music Director of the NCPA Orchestra, succeeding founding director Zuohuang Chen (now Conductor Laureate), in January 2017. This concert marks the NCPA Orchestra’s debut under San Francisco Symphony auspices.
Artists associated with the orchestra have included Zubin Mehta, Lorin Maazel, Valery Gergiev, Myung-Whun Chung, Christoph Eschenbach, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Fabio Luisi, Lang Lang, Stephen Kovacevich, Leo Nucci, and Yuja Wang, among many others.
The orchestra has gained critical acclaim for its performances in opera productions of not only standard repertory works such as Tosca, Die Fledermaus, Lohengrin, Aïda, and Nabucco, but also newly commissioned works such as Lei Lei’s The Chinese Orphan, and Guo Wenjing’s The Rickshaw Boy. The orchestra’s performance of Lorin Maazel’s Wagner adaptation, Ring without Words, was released on SONY Classics worldwide—the only recording Mr. Maazel ever made with a Chinese orchestra. The orchestra has presented the Chinese premieres of works by Tōru Takemitsu and Giya Kancheli, and the world premieres of works by Michael Gordon and Augusta Read Thomas. The NCPA Orchestra has received international praise for its performances at the Kissingen Summer Music Festival, Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival as well as concerts in many cities in Germany as well as Sydney, Singapore, Seoul, Daegu, Abu Dhabi, Taipei, and Macau.