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CHIME ­ European Foundation For Chinese Music Research


General Information

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CHIME meeting. Rotterdam, 1995

Many genres of Chinese music are still virtually unheard of in the West, and relatively few field recordings are commercially available. Until recently, only few scholars specialized on Chinese music, but in the past few years there has been an encouraging increase in publications on many aspects of Chinese music. CHIME has rapidly established its position as a small but essential platform for scholars and students of Chinese music in the world of Western ethnomusicology, sinology and anthropology. We encourage researchers but also general afficionados of Chinese music around the world to contact us and share with us their experiences and concerns. You may wish to join our annual meetings, perhaps visit our archive in Leiden, The Netherlands, or order our publications.

CHIME was founded in 1990 by European music scholars from four different countries. CHIME serves as an active world-wide network of Chinese music enthusiasts. We take an interest in Han Chinese music, but also in other native music traditions within the current geographical borders of China, in musical cultures of areas bordering China, and in music of the Chinese diaspora.

Taken from their homepage

Founding members

Among the founders of CHIME are Frank Kouwenhoven (currently the Foundation's Secretary-Treasurer), Antoinet Schimmelpenninck (Leiden University), Stephen Jones (SOAS, University of London), François Picard (The Sorbonne University, Paris) and Helen Rees (University of California, Los Angeles). In recent years, Dr. Laurence Picken (Cambridge University UK) and Dr. Barbara Mittler (Heidelberg University) were appointed honorary members.


At its office in Leiden, the CHIME Foundation hosts a library for books, articles, papers, theses and dissertations on Chinese music. At present it contains approximately 4,000 books and music scores, 3,000 cassettes, magnetic tapes and gramophone records (including many 78 rpm commercial records as well as historical field recordings), and several hundred video tapes. The Foundation subscribes to over one hundred journals in the field of ethnomusicology and Chinese music. We have a small collection of Chinese and Asian instruments which is on display. From its very start in 1991 students and scholars from all over the world have paid visits to the archive and have made use of our facilities.

The rapid growth of materials and the need to catalogue them puts increasing pressure on our capacities, both in terms of people and equipment. We regret that we cannot duplicate video or sound recordings kept in our archive. On request, visitors can consult recordings and video documents in our sound room. Visitors can borrow books for the duration of six weeks (or longer, on special arrangement). The library has xerox facilities. We regret that we cannot lend out journals and audiovisual materials (sound recordings, videos etc.), and cannot honour requests to send books to readers or provide copies of materials by mail. They have no on-line catalogue (yet!).

Further Information

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