China Crossing Composition Competition

Read about the China Crossing Composition Competition, a new competition for 2021

The Confucius Institute (CI) and the New Zealand School of Music – Te Kōkī (NZSM) jointly look after a collection of Chinese musical instruments housed in the Asia Pacific Music Studio. The CI started the collection in 2017 and added more instruments in 2020. There are now over 20 different kinds of traditional Chinese instruments available for teaching and performance purposes at the NZSM and by CI stakeholders.

The CI/NZSM China Crossing programme has traditionally explored musical collaboration between China and New Zealand composers and performers. To encourage cross-cultural musical expression students at the NZSM are invited to enter a China Crossing Composition Competition utilising instrument/s contained in the collection of Chinese musical instruments.

A fully notated work for one or more of the Chinese instruments in the collection. The Confucius Institute will endeavour to provide performers who can play the following instruments and read music to a medium level:

Bowed string instruments
Erhu 二胡 Chinese two-stringed fiddle
Zhonghu 中胡 low-pitched Chinese two-stringed fiddle

Plucked string instruments
Pipa 琵琶 Chinese lute
Zhongruan 中阮 Tenor ruan lute
Guzheng 古筝 Chinese plucked zither

Percussion stringed instrument
Yangqin 揚琴 Chinese hammered dulcimer

Wind instruments
Dizi 笛 Chinese transverse flute
Xiao 蕭 Chinese vertical flute

A workshop showcasing the main instruments will be run in early 2021 and entrants will have the opportunity to work with musicians later in the year to fine tune their music compositions.

c. 3-5 minutes

First place will be awarded a prize of $1500 and an opportunity to record the work.
Two highly commended prizes of $500 each.

Entrants must be enrolled in a composition course at the NZSM during 2021.

Please submit your work online at by no later than 4pm, Monday 2 August 2021
The winning work will be encouraged to be performed at the NZSM Lilburn Trust Composers Competition.