Small village in China's Tianjin produces more than half of world's saxophones

A worker assembles musical instruments in a factory in Sidangkouzhong village.

A worker assembles musical instruments in a factory in Sidangkouzhong village.

Published Sep 8, 2022


More than half of the world's saxophones are produced in Sidangkouzhong village in north China's Tianjin Municipality. The small village, which has been dubbed China’s "Saxophone Village," also produces various other Western musical instruments, including trumpets, trombones, and clarinets, with over 80 percent of them being exported to more than 10 foreign countries.

From processing musical instrument parts and accessories for large companies to independently developing its own manufacturing techniques, the village has witnessed significant changes in its musical instrument manufacturing industry over the past decades.

Today, nearly 200 million yuan ($29.12 million) worth of musical instruments produced in the village are sold overseas every year to countries that include Germany, the U.S., Japan, and South Korea.

There are more than 40 musical instrument companies of different sizes based in the village, according to Huang Jinpeng, secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Sidangkouzhong village branch.

About 8,000 people, including local villagers and migrant workers, work at local musical instrument factories, Huang said, adding that almost every household in the village has family members working at these factories.

Photo shows musical instruments produced in Sidangkouzhong village.

Zhang Guomin, an executive of a local musical instrument company, disclosed that sales at his company have nearly doubled over the past decade.

"Many professional foreign tuba players have asked to try our products, and every instrument we send is inscribed with our logo, the model number, as well as the words 'Made in China’," said Ding Baohua, a sales manager at a musical instrument company in the village.

The burgeoning musical instrument manufacturing industry has not only increased the income of local people, but has made their life more colourful, and with more and more musical instruments being sold overseas, Western music culture has gradually been assimilated into local people's everyday lives. Many villagers, especially people working at the musical instrument factories, have meanwhile also learned to play Western instruments.

"I've worked in the industry for several decades. I haven't gone to a music school, but I have learned quite a lot over these years since I make musical instruments every day," said Fu Guangcheng, a production manager at a musical instrument company in the village.

People working in the musical instrument manufacturing industry in the village have all learned basic knowledge and skills about playing the musical instruments they make, Fu added.