MUSIC: NO MORE EAST OR WEST

CHINESE-BORN COMPOSER TAN DUN IS SHAKING THINGS UP WITH A MULTICULTURAL MIX OF HIS OWN

It starts with the sound of ancient bells. Not just any ancient bells, but the deep-throated, time-tinted clang and roar of a bianzhong, a fully intact set of 65 ceremonial bronze chimes entombed in China's Hubei province in 433 B.C. and dug up by amazed archaeologists 2,400 years later. Then the Hong Kong Philharmonic steals in with a simple yet radiant tune in D major--the key of Beethoven's Ode to Joy--and a children's choir begins to sing, accompanied by the soft throb of Chinese drums pounding out an African-flavored beat.

Is it a symphony? Is it world music? Call Tan Dun's...

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