Yiqun Zhao was born in China and has lived in Halifax for years. Yiqun started to learn Erhu in China in 1997. The Erhu is a Chinese traditional bowed string instrument, which has a human-like voice that carries and displays emotion well. The role of the Erhu is comparable to that of the violin; it can be a solo, a leading voice in orchestra, and also the accompaniment to other instruments. Yiqun has passed the topmost grade (grade ten) exam from the Chinese Musician’s Association, China Nationalities Orchestra Society and the Shandong Provincial Education Depa
rtment. Yiqun has also won numerous first prizes in competitions at City, Provincial and National levels in China. She has been featured and given prominence on Chinese television as part an orchestral ensemble.
Yiqun is still continuing her Erhu career as a part-time teacher, soloist, and performer. She has given performances with Symphony Nova Scotia, the Nova Scotia Chinese Culture And Art Club, and the Halifax Confucius Institution. Yiqun has been in three Chinese Orchestra bands and played as the first chair Erhu player in all of them. Her style is rooted in traditional Chinese music but incorporates a chromatic range more often associated with musicals, giving a variety of emotion to her play. Yiqun is also very open to all music styles and would love to cooperate with musicians from all over the world.