Country : Canada (Quebec) / China Label : Orchard of Pomegranates Genres and styles : Contemporary / Contemporary Jazz / Jazz Year : 2023

Ruiqi Wang – Subduing the Silence

· by Frédéric Cardin

I spoke to you about Ruiqi Wang a few weeks ago, who was at Montreal’s OFF Jazz Fest. She gave exactly the same programme, with the same order of pieces. Subduing the Silence, the album, diverges very little from what was heard live on 12 October. 

Read the review of the concert to launch Subduing the Silence, by Ruiqi Wang, on 12 October 2023 at Montreal Improv, as part of the OFF Jazz Festival.

The nature of the Chinese-born Montrealer’s music being what it is, that is to say, more contemporary writing than purely improvised jazz, the thematic, harmonic and even melodic skeleton changes little, even if autonomous spaces are left here and there. A thoughtful blend of some improvisation, lots of contemporary writing, traditional Chinese song and learned references to Ligeti, Pauline Oliveros or Meredith Monk, and even Evans and Strayhorn, make Subduing the Silence an impressive first opus for an artist in her early twenties. The potential for development is immense, and we might even sense that the young singer-songwriter could be a kind of Chinese answer to Korea’s Youn Sun-Nah and Japan’s Hiromi (in terms of eclectic avant-garde, even post-modernism). Time will tell. Now that her studies at McGill are over, Ruiqi has begun training in composition at the Berne Academy of the Arts in Switzerland. There’s no doubt that she’ll be back with even more explosive and accomplished material before long. And, of course, we hope she’ll be back here to share her new ideas with us.

Ruiqi Wang – voice/compositions/arrangements

Stephanie Urquhart – piano

Summer Kodama – bass

Mili Hong – drums

String Quartet : 

Colleen Brannen – violin

Amy Sims – violin

Amelia Hollander Ames – viola

Velleda Miragias – cello

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