|The guanzi is a double-reed musical instrument, which has
a very long history. It developed in ancient Persia (today's Iran). In
ancient China, people called it bili or luguan. About more than 2,000
years ago, the guanzi had already been very popular for a time in Northwest
China's Xinjiang region. Later, it was introduced into the mainland and
the performance levels were greatly improved. Today, northern people frequently
play the guanzi.
The instrument is loud with a clear and bright tone. It carries with itself a strong countryside flavour. The structure is very simple, as it is made of only three parts. It is often performed in solo, concert, and accompaniment. In some music of North China, the guanzi has played a very important role.
The performance dimensions are various, with performers able to execute roulade and glissando (types of notes) as well as some unique skills. While performing, performers can depend on the rounding of their mouth to imitate human voices and animal sounds. There are various kinds and different sizes of guanzi, such as the double-reed guanzi.
The solo below played on the guanzi is smooth and relaxing. Such music can often be heard in opera scenes of characters changing their clothes or walking down streets.