Singapore Youth Chinese Orchestra and Singapore Chinese Orchestra to stage a concert of local composer Phoon Yew Tien’s compositions

Singapore, 25 February 2016 (Thursday) – Singapore Youth Chinese Orchestra (SYCO) and Singapore Chinese Orchestra (SCO) will stage a one-night-only concert featuring local composer, and SCO composer-in-residence, Phoon Yew Tien’s compositions. This is an annual concert where SCO’s youth orchestra, SYCO, and SCO will perform together and is a unique opportunity to watch three conductors conduct. Titled Dauntless Spirit 2016, this concert will be held on 19 March 2016 (Saturday), 7.30pm at the Esplanade Concert Hall.

The first-half of the concert will feature SYCO with its newly-appointed Music Director Quek Ling Kiong and conductor Moses Gay conducting five of Phoon Yew Tien’s compositions. The concert will commence with Overture – Step Up and Up, a piece composed by Phoon Yew Tien for SCO’s inaugural concert in 1997. The piece signifies progression towards a goal and encompasses his congratulations to the orchestra. With Malay folk melodies weaved into the piece, Village Pasir Panjang portrays the joyous atmosphere in a Malay village. Audience can also enjoy rendition of pieces including Petite Suite: Scenic Jiang Nan and Song of Cicada and Reminiscence of March.

The second-half of the concert will feature SCO with two outstanding SYCO musicians who  will  perform a dizi concerto and pipa concerto respectively. SYCO dizi principal Sherman Lee Le Xuan will perform Phoon Yew Tien’s Xin Tian You under the baton of Moses Gay. This piece uses melodic elements from Yunnan folk song, Ten Sisters and Shanxi folk song, Xin Tian You, in its composition. Sherman started learning the dizi at the age of 9 and has achieved a Grade 9 in dizi from the grading exams jointly organised by the Shanghai Conservatory of Music and Shangyin Music School. Sherman also arranges music, of which,  his arrangements have been performed by Pasir Ris Secondary School Chinese Orchestra. He is currently pursuing a Diploma in Music at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (NAFA).

SYCO pipa member Yu Man will perform a piece composed by Lu Shao En and rearranged by Phoon Yew Tien – The Five Heroes of Lang Ya Mountain under the baton of SYCO Music Director Quek Ling Kiong. Yu Man started learning pipa at the age of 10 and has received training at Shenyang National School of Arts. In 2014, Yu Man was admitted to NAFA  and won the first prize in the open pipa category at the National Chinese Music Competition 2014 organized by the National Art Council.

The combined SYCO-SCO orchestra will perform the finale piece, Paean and Reflections under the baton of SYCO advisor Tsung Yeh. This piece is based on the theme song Paean from Xiao Dao Hui. The romantic and dramatic style is also reminiscent of the music of the dramas, dances and movies from China that were popular in Singapore in the 1950s and 1960s. As part of SCO’s 20th anniversary celebration, SYCO alumni members are invited to perform in this concert as a form of reconnecting relationships through music-making.

Phoon Yew Tien is a renowned local composer whose works have been performed worldwide. In 1996 he was awarded the Cultural Medallion, the highest award given in the field of the arts in Singapore. In 2003, he was the composer-in-residence for the Singapore Symphony Orchestra and was appointed the composer-in-residence for SCO since 2014.

The Singapore Youth Chinese Orchestra (SYCO) is a group of highly talented musicians between the ages of 11 to 26, under the National Project of Excellence (NPOE) recognised by the Ministry of Education. With more than 90 members, SYCO aims to nurture aspiring young musicians and groom them to be the future pillars of Singapore’s Chinese music industry. Quek Ling Kiong is the Music Director for SYCO with Maestro Tsung Yeh as its advisor and Moses Gay as its conductor. SYCO is managed by SCO under the purview of the National Arts Council and supported by the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth.

Music Director: Quek Ling Kiong  SYCO advisor: Tsung Yeh         Conductor: Moses Gay

Dizi: Sherman Lee Le Xuan        Pipa: Yu Man

Singapore Youth Chinese Orchestra

Concert details:
Dauntless Spirit 2016 – SYCO & SCO Annual Concert
Date: 19 March 2016 (Saturday)
Time: 7.30pm
Venue: SCO Concert Hall
Ticket prices (before SISTIC fees): $28, $18
Tickets from SISTIC

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