Home> News Center>Features>Nantong national intangible cultural heritage

Mei'an guqin art

en.nantong.gov.cn Updated: 2023-05-09

[Video provided to en.nantong.gov.cn]

The guqin is a seven-stringed plucked instrument in some ways similar to the zither. guqin art is the most ancient type of instrumental music performance in China with the highest artistic value.

Mei'an guqin is one of the representative schools of guqin art in China. It emerged in the early years of the Republic of China period (1912-49).

640 (2).jpg

Guqin. [Photo/WeChat account: ntmaqs]

It received the name because the founder Wang Yanqing gave guqin lessons at Mei'an in Nanjing, capital of East China's Jiangsu province.

Xu Lisun and Shao Dasu studied the ancient musical instrument under Wang Yanqing and returned to Nantong to establish the Mei'an Guqin Club in 1929.

640 (3).jpg

A guqin player performs at the Nantong Mei'an Guqin Club. [Photo/WeChat account: ntmaqs]

In 1931, they published Mei'an Qin Pu (Mei'an Music Score), the first publication of its kind in China and the first Chinese score to be translated into a foreign language, which had a huge impact on the reform and development of guqin art.

Mei'an guqin is known for its novel and lively melodies, bright rhythms, and unique playing techniques. It has been passed down from generation to generation through oral instruction.

In 2003, Chinese guqin art was listed as a masterpiece of human oral and intangible cultural heritage by UNESCO. In 2008, Nantong's Mei'an guqin art was included among the national intangible cultural heritage items.