Composed by Yu DengConducted by Milen NachevThis piece is a tribute to Kublai Khan, the man who in the thirteenth century ushered in the majestic Yuan Dynasty. A pulsing anthem led by brass and percussion declares the arrival of the Mongol warriors led by Kublai Khan, grandson of the fearsome Genghis Khan. As war erupts, strings and woodwinds send swords and arrows whistling through the air and steady, galloping rhythms push the cavalry forward. Powerful as he was, the “Wise Khan” stood out in his efforts to understand the peoples under his rule. Unlike his grandfather, who forced his subjects to assimilate to Mongolian culture, Kublai studied Chinese thought and incorporated many practices from previous dynasties into his own court. It was his openness that allowed a traveler by the name of Marco Polo to witness the grandeur of ancient China, record it in his journal, and bring this knowledge of the East back to Europe.