Interview, Ho’s Cultural Influences: Hong Kong to Canada

Type:Interview (text)

“The part that I appreciate most about Canadian culture is diversity. This strengthens my acceptance of other cultures as well as treasures my own.” – A.H.

In her native Hong Kong, Ho grew up with knowledge of both Chinese and Western music. Schools offered Chinese traditional instrumental music and choral music studies that introduced her to a wealth of Chinese folk songs. As a result, Ho draws on several elements of her Chinese heritage as sources of inspiration. These include cultural elements such Chinese poetry, art, philosophy, and folklore; elements of Chinese brush painting; texts from Chinese poetry; elements of Peking Opera; chant and scales and some traditional instruments.

As a composer she is also inspired by cultural traditions outside of her own, and has created works based on Irish and Somalian folk songs, Japanese mythology, and American Indian mythology. Overall, Ho’s music does not identify her as belonging to only one culture, but to the “drama, intensity, philosophy, intention, experiences and emotions of myself as an individual.” Her primary interests are in operatic and folk elements, and, as represented in Ming, the work featured here, in the aesthetics of and philosophy reflected in Chinese poetry, painting and instrumental playing. “Chinese culture is a natural and rich resource for me to explore continuously,” she writes. “It is great to live in a free, opened-minded, multicultural country like Canada, (...) The acceptance of many cultural heritages and the resources of musicians and artists (here) enables me to create music of many possible genres.”

Credits:Dr. Mary Ingraham
Subject:Alice Ping Yee Ho | Ming
Related People:Alice Ping Yee HoAlice Ping Yee Ho
Created Date2007