Episode 137: Jing Xia – Guzheng Artist, Producer / Ethnomusicologist

Jing Xia is a professional guzheng artist, producer, and ethnomusicologist based in Newfoundland, Canada. Born and raised in Hunan, China, Xia started to study the guzheng at six years old and holds degrees in Music Performance (B.A.), Arts Management (M.A.), and Ethnomusicology (Ph.D.).
Xia’s recent accolades include winning the 2023 East Coast Music Award “Roots/Traditional Recording of the Year” and the 2023 MusicNL Award “Album of the Year” for her solo album, “The Numinous Journey”. She was named the 2023 MusicNL “Solo Artist of the Year” and 2022 MusicNL “Rising Star of the Year”.
Xia’s music has no boundaries. As a performer of all styles, her musical journey on the guzheng has encompassed a wide range of musical genres, from Chinese traditional/folk music to intercultural ensembles, fusion bands, improvisation, and beyond. Xia has played with various musicians and musical groups, including guzheng virtuoso Mei Han, the trad-rock band Shanneyganock, and the Vancouver Intercultural Orchestra.
In 2018, she world premiered The Congruent Place, in collaboration with the Regina-based composer Clinton Ackerman at the Sound Symposium XIX. In January 2023, Xia world-premiered Jubilant Entanglements, a guzheng concerto by award-winning composer Andrew Staniland with the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra. Xia has been active in the music scenes in North America and performed in diverse musical events, including the Newfoundland Folk Festival, the Nashville Chinese New Year Festival, and the Vancouver International Jazz Festival.
Moving her tradition into the future, Xia founded the Light Wind Ensemble, a pioneer Chinese ensemble in Newfoundland, and XIA-3, a fusion experimental band, with a repertoire ranging from Chinese classics to post-rock music. Xia’s musical groups have played in diverse musical venues, including the Newfoundland Folk Festival (NL), SappyFest (NB), and DuneFest (St. Pierre & Miquelon, France).
As an ethnomusicologist, Xia has been teaching music for more than a decade and has given informative lectures, workshops, and performances at universities and conferences around the world. Her research focuses on the diasporic experience of professional Chinese instrumentalists and their intercultural and transnational music-making in North America. Xia has worked in many cultural organizations, including the Currently Arts Society (Vancouver), the Research Centre for the Study of Music, Media, and Place (St. John’s), We Care Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador (St. John’s), the Center for Chinese Music and Culture (Murfreesboro, the U.S.), and the Smithsonian Folkways Recordings (Washington D.C.).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *