Dong Zhou

Photo by Thomas Zydatis

Dong Zhou was born in 1992 in Shanghai. Although from her great grandfather all generations of her family play traditional Chinese Sizhu Music, she learnt piano from 3 and violin from 9 and played in the orchestra from 12. She gained her B. A. in electroacoustic music composition in Shanghai conservatory and M.A. in multimedia composition in Hamburg University of Music and Drama and names Qiangbin Chen, Yi Qin, Georg Hajdu, and Elmar Lampson as her most significant former mentors. As a composer and multimedia artist, she always tries to create different spaces and layers of sound and combine different languages of art to fully express her point of view and imagination.

Her works were presented in Shanghai International Art Festival (2013/2015), the ‘Sound of World’ Microsoft ringtones collection (2014), SMC (2016/ 2018), Blurred Edges (2016 – 2020), WOCMAT (2016/ 2017) , EUROMicroFest (2017), NYCEMF (2017), KlingtGut (2017), ICMC(2017/ 2018),  Evimus (2018), DEGEM Konzert (2018), Split Art Convention (2018), ZKM Next Generation (2017/ 2019), New Music Miami ISCM Festival (2019), Echofluxx New Media Festival (2019), and Serials Festival Évora (2020). She was commissioned by Shanghai International Art Festival in 2015, CLAB Festival Hamburg in 2018, and ZKM Karlsruhe in 2019. In ICMC 2018 Hacker-N-Makerthon, her project with Deborah Kim got the first prize. She was also one of the four finalists of the Composition Prize of 2019 Deutscher Musikwettbewerb.

She worked for several theatres as sound design and composition: Peony Pavilion Yin Yang (2013, Shanghai Theatre Academy), Miss Shanghai (2015, Shanghai Centre of Stage Play), A Fairy Tale (2016, Staatsoper Hamburg), Sweet Dreams (2019, St. Pauli Theater), 100 Songs (assistant sound design, Stadttheater Gießen), Strandrecht (2019, Lichthof Theater), and A Way (2020, Monsun Theater).

Her installations were exhibited in Hangzhou City Library (2016), University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (2018), and Museum of Perception Graz (2019).

She is one of the core members of the collective “Gong Projekt”. Since 2017 through many attempts and practices, they found their unique way to transform the ethnic culture into contemporary music and performance which they comment and criticize the modern society with. Besides this project, she was also active contributors of musical therapy project “Sonic Environments for Healing” (2016-2018), musical education project “Klangradar 3000/ Reise 21” (2018), refugee inclusive project “AMALGAM”(2017-2019) and online musician uniting project “#pajamaopera” (2020).

Apart from composition, she has also strong interest in literature, sociology, and performance art. She won the second prize in “New Concept” Chinese Youth Literature Contest in 2013 and worked as a trainee editor in Shanghai Writer’s Association. In middle school, she took drama lessons for three years and worked as the leader of the drama club. As a violinist and performer for multimedia pieces, she performed with different groups and bands in Shanghai, Daegu, and different cities in Europe. In 2020 she produced two solo performances: “Dreams of the Socialist Girl” (Lichthof Theater) and “#pajamaopera Solo Remix” (online). Currently, she is doing a doctoral study in Aesthetics and Culture of Digital Media at Leuphana University under professor Dr. Rolf Großmann’s supervision.

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