Ensemble to play adventurous concert

The Kansas University Instrumental Collegium Musicum will present "The Spirit of Marco Polo: The Chinese Pipa Meets Italian Medieval and Renaissance Culture" at 7:30 p.m. March 9 at KU's Spencer Research Library.

The concert is free.

Marco Polo was an Italian adventurer who appears to have been among the first Europeans to visit China. The spirit of that long trek and the union of cultures will be celebrated in this concert, a meeting of primarily Italian music from before 1640 with the Chinese pipa, a pear-shaped lute that is one of the culture's most popular instruments.

The pipa player will be Yi-Fang Ko, a Taiwanese graduate student. Paul Laird, associate professor of musicology, directs the ensemble.

The program also will include a pipa solo and later chamber music by Georg Philipp Telemann.

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