Zhenyan Li (b.1998) is a Chinese composer based in London. Her works are inspired by theatrical elements, especially the performing style of traditional oriental theatre. Li has been commissioned by the Chinese Oriental Ensemble of Beijing, Manson Ensemble, Royal Academy Opera, and Barcelona Modern Ensemble. As an active collaborator, she has worked on projects with Architectural Association, London Film School, Leeds Lieder Festival, and SOAS University of London, as well as individuals, writers David Alfred, Sam Redway, BBC producer Emma Harding, artist Toby Tobias, Lulu Wang, and percussionist Beibei Wang. Recent and upcoming projects include works developed as part of Lucerne Composition Academy Programme 2022, Psappha Ensemble, and Central School of Ballet. Her first musical theatre work, in collaboration with Shanghai Theatre Academy and Shanghai Conservatoire, will be premiered in 2023.
Li is also an active Chinese flute player. She is a member of the London Chinese Opera Studio founded by Chinese opera singer Kathy Hall and they have performed at the SOAS University of London and the Garden Museum, etc. Currently, Li is also teaching the Chinese flute at UCL.
Li finished her Bachelor of Music degree and Master of Music degree (with distinction) in composition under Rubens Akesnar and Edmund Finnis at the Royal Academy of Music. She will continue to pursue her doctoral degree at the same institution.