About Guzheng 關於古箏

Guzheng (zheng 箏, gu 古 means "ancient"), is a Chinese plucked zither.  It has 16 or more strings and movable bridges, and the modern guzheng usually has 21 strings and bridges.

The guzheng is the ancestor of several Asian zither instruments.  It's descendants spread all over Asia, such as the Koto of Japan, the Kayagum of Korea, and the Dan Tranh of Vietnam.

 

16-steel stringed guzheng

16-steel stringed guzheng

 

Originally, silk strings were used, but these are now replaced with metal strings or metal wrapped with nylon strings instead. The player plucks the strings on the right hand side withe the right hand, while the left hand presses the strings on the left hand side to produce variation of vibrato.

 

21-stringed guzheng

21-stringed guzheng

 

In 20th century, guzheng has achieved historic development. Through out the history, guzheng keeps its vitality by interweaving its music with rich folk foundation and creative performers in each generation.  In the late 20th century, with the tremendous change of social and cultural environment, besides being continuously popular in the mass, guzheng music began to be taught in professional music conservatories. The mix of professional musicians and folk musicians produces an unprecedented improvements and enrichments in the guzheng music. The most outstanding example is the emergence of numerous new pieces.  At the end of 20th century, guzheng has become the major Chinese instrument with richest pieces documentaries.