Xue Han is a Chinese composor currently based in Montréal, Canada. As a seeker and re-creator in the world of sound, her work draws on various genres, spanning from chamber and orchestra composition for both Chinese and Western intruments, acousmatic and live electronic pieces, to experimental musical theatre and media installation, as well as film music.
Xue started her music training at a young age on piano and dance performance. She studied composition and music theory at Centre Conservatory of Music of Bard College. Her primary composition mentors were Min Xiang, John H. Morrison, Guoping Jia and Jeremy Van Buskirk (electronic music). Since 2016, Xue has been a doctoral student in composition at Schulich School of Music of McGill University, under the supervision of Philippe Leroux.
Xue's compositional interest concerns the interactions between the influence of human nature on performer's actions and their reflections towards music/sonic presentation. At the same time, many of her works examine the anthropomorphic intonational recitation and narration on acoustic instruments. By mixing and merging oriental and western musical vocabularies and aesthetics, her aim is to depict and interpret the sound phenomena that either derive from nature or stem from her native culture.
Xue's work have been performed across many countries including China, the United States and France. A Song in the Autumn Wind, her chamber work written for chinese instruments, was released on albums in China (2012). She was the winner of the Pappalardo Composition Competition (2014) with her piece Portrait of the Dew, and was awarded the Ravel Prize for Composition (2017), for the piece Whence Hilarity III. Some of the musicians and performing organizations she has worked with include the China Youth Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre Symponique de Montréal, Radius Ensemble, Meitar Ensemble, ECCE Ensemble, Bozzini Quartet, Exaudi Vocal Ensemble, Danza Organica, and soloists from Ensemble Intercontemporain. Xue has also participated in several music festivals, composition masterclasses and workshops in China, North America, and Europe, where she took lessons with composors from around the world, such as Akira Nishimura, Noriko Baba, Johannes Schöllhorn, François Paris, Allain Gaussin, Philippe Hurel, Mauro Lanza, Erin Gee, Yi Chen and Xiaoyong Chen, among others.
In addition to her compositions in the field of contemporary classical music, Xue is the composer of the score for Lao Si, nominated for best short film at the Taiwan Golden Horse Awards (2011); one of her collaborative installation works, Ink Fall (with the visal artist Seph Li), was exhibited in Brazil at the FILE media art festival (2015).
Along with her work as a composer, Xue as taught composition, harmony, fundamentals of music theory, solfeggio and ear training to students in music and music-related majors. She was a teaching assistant for a computer music class during her graduate study at Longy School of Music.