As a Distinguished Endowed Professor at the UMKC Conservatory, a prolific composer, and recipient of the Ives Living Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, Dr. Chen Yi blends Chinese and Western traditions, transcending cultural and musical boundaries. Her music is published by Theodore Presser, performed and recorded worldwide. A member of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, she holds degrees from Beijing Central Conservatory of Music and Columbia University. A cultural ambassador and strong advocate of new music and contemporary composers, Dr. Chen has introduced many compositions and musicians between East and West, for arts exchange programs around the world. She believes that music is a universal language, improving understanding between peoples with different cultural backgrounds and helping to bring peace in the world.