Skip navigation
The Australian National University
Tsai Tsan-Huang

Dr Tsai Tsan-Huang


DPhil (Anthropology), University of Oxford
MPhil (Anthropology), University of Oxford
MMus (Ethnomusicology), University of Sheffield
BA (Chinese Music), Chinese Culture University University
Senior Lecturer, Department of East Asian Studies, ANU College of Asia & the Pacific

Download CV


TSAI Tsan-huang is a Senior Lecturer at Australian National University. Having studied ethnomusicology (M.Mus) at Sheffield and anthropology (M.Phil and D.Phil) at Oxford, he taught three years at Nanhua University in Taiwan and six years at the Chinese University of Hong Kong before joined the Australian Centre on China in the World as a Post-doctorial Research Fellow in 2013. His research covers a wide range of disciplines, including ethnomusicology, organology, anthropology, and Chinese/Taiwanese studies. He is the author of an upcoming monograph From the Scholarly Chamber to the World Stage, two edited books Captured Memories of a Fading Musical Past: The Chinese Instrument Collection at the Music Department of the Chinese University of Hong Kong (Yuan-Liou Publishing Co, 2010) and Listening to China’s Cultural Revolution: Music, Politics, and Cultural Continuities co-edited with Paul Clark and Laikwan Pang (Palgrave Macmillan 2015), and more than twenty articles published in both Chinese and English languages examining the Chinese seven-stringed zither, Buddhist music, music and politics of Taiwan, and theoretical/methodological issues of organology. His scholarly awards include an Affiliated Fellowship (International Institute for Asian Studies), an Endeavour Fellowship (Australian Government), a Visiting Fellowship (ANU’s Humanities Research Centre), a PhD Fellowship (Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation), and the Gribbon Award (American Musical Instrumental Society).

Other Languages

  • Chinese

Research Interests

  • Musical cultures of China and Taiwan
  • Chinese music in Australia
  • Musical instruments and museum collections
  • Ethnomusicology, material anthropology
Return to top

Current Projects

  • Chinese seven-stringed zither qin and the intangible cultural heritage
  • Musics during China’s cultural revolution
  • Musics and dances during Taiwan’s cultural renaissance movement
Return to top

Selected Publications

Contributions to The China Story

'Chinese Dragons in Australia’ The China Story Journal, 7 August 2014, online at:


‘Making a Confucianist Meditative Tool into a Maoist Revolutionary Weapon? The Seven- stringed Zither (Qin) in the Cultural Revolution’, Listening to China’s Cultural Revolution: Model Operas and Musical Culture, edited by Paul Clark, Laikwan Pang, and Tsan-Huang Tsai (Forthcoming)

‘We’re All Applied Ethnomusicologists Now: The Case of The Chinese Musical Instrument Collection at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and its Database Project’, Asian Musicology, vol.20 (2012): 39-62

《追憶淡忘中的音樂往昔:香港中文大學音樂系中國樂器收藏圖錄》[Captured Memories of a Fading Musical Past: The Chinese Instrument Collection at the Music Department of the Chinese University of Hong Kong], edited by Tsan-Huang Tsai. Taipei: Yuan-Liou Publishing Co. (2010)

‘The Entangled Relationship between Life Stories and Musical Instruments: A Case-study of the Qin’, 《民俗曲藝》[The Journal of Chinese Ritual, Theatre and Folklore], no.144 (2004): 163-93

 ‘Is the Wind, the Banner, or the Mind Moving? The Concept of Body in Chinese Han Buddhist Ritual Performance and Its Musical Practices’, The World of Music, no.44 (2002): 73-92
Return to top

Updated:  9 February 2017/Responsible Officer:  Director, China in the World /Page Contact:  China in the World