The Platformisation of Western Art Music

Creativity, production and music labour in digital China

Weida Wang. Photo by Stefan Zhang


Session 19

Chaired by Weida Wang (China/UK), music industry researcher & dramaturg, University of Liverpool

China’s Western Art Music (WAM) industry is driven by the mechanism of a music industry with over 30 million WAM pupils as the younger generations engage. Its WAM industry professionals have consciously cooperated with local digital media platforms to produce ‘out-of-the-box’ projects. For example, streaming platforms such as Bilibili, featuring Japanese ACG (animation, comics and games) culture, have gradually penetrated various fields of China’s WAM scene. This session is about exploring the platformisation of WAM in China. It will help to understand how China’s cyber environment adopts and transforms WAM into its subcultural and pop-cultural form, infusing it in the younger generation. In the context of the internet culture boom, the rapid conversion from traffic to capital in consumerism and the recent Covid-19 pandemic, this session looks at how WAM practice is reconstructed in the Chinese digital environment, which will be important to help stakeholders understand the new phenomenon of China’s WAM industry.