The Making of "Transcend" by Zhou Tian, Grammy-Nominated Composer
29 Apr 2019
“Transcend” is a multi-movement orchestral piece, written in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the completion of the First Transcontinental Railroad, and on the occasion of the Reno Phil’s 50th anniversary. Begun in 1862 and completed in 1869, the Transcontinental Railroad effectively linked the US from east to west for the first time. Its cultural heritage includes the contribution of a thousands-strong Chinese and Irish workforce who toiled in severe weather and cruel working conditions. Numerous “hell on wheels” towns proliferated along the construction route and became famous for rapid growth and infamous for lawlessness. As the settlements pushed westward, there was a mixing of ethnic groups and cultures. (Unfortunately, as the daunting task of laying tracks over difficult terrain increased, many workers perished, and many of the rest were denied the American dream by the enactment of the Chinese Exclusion Act in 1882. But those who stayed brought Chinese traditional art
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