Traditional Chinese Instruments
The classic Chinese Orchestra has four sections: the bowed strings, the plucked strings, the winds, and the percussion.
BOWED STRING INSTRUMENTS
The Erhu has a small body and a long neck. There are two strings, with the bow inserted between them. With a range of around three octaves, it"s sound is rather like the violin, but with a thinner tone due to the smaller resonating chamber. In the orchestra they are usually divided into 1st and 2nd parts.
This instrument is a variety of the huqin. This is so because it uses a wooden sounding board in the sound box. Also known as the bonghu (clapper huqin) because it was heard in the Bangzi or "clapper operas" of the 17th century.
Gaohu and Zhonghu
These are common doubles for Erhu players. The Gaohu is higher-pitched, while the Zhonghu is the alto version. The Zhonghu has a beautiful tone, similar to the cello.
This is a mixture of the cello and the hu, using four strings, and similar playing technique. As the instrument uses a banjo-like membrane as the sounding board, the resulting sound is unlike the cello, however.
Very similar in technique and usage as the double bass, with a different sound due to the variance in construction.