Let Your Child Aspire to Perform Music at the Highest Level

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Ask any musician, whether an instrumentalist or vocalist, what it feels like to go up on stage and perform for a crowd and you’ll invariably get answers like “nerve-wrecking” or “exhilarating”.

It’s nerve-wrecking because some may be hit by stage-fright, worrying about playing the wrong notes or singing the wrong lyrics. Clammy hands, butterflies in the stomach… these are all common pre-performance symptoms. But once the music starts and they give it their all, they’ll discover why making music is so satisfying, and they’ll want to experience the exhilaration from performing again and again.

The joy of performing music can be nurtured from a young age. Experts recommend children to be involved in a musical ensemble, not only to hone their music skills, but also to learn important life skills, such as discipline, patience and teamwork.

snyo-lightboxIn Singapore, budding young musicians trained in classical music can aspire to play music at the highest level by joining the Singapore National Youth Orchestra (SNYO), which is managed by the Singapore Symphony Orchestra (SSO) and recognised by the Ministry of Education as a National Project of Excellence. As a leading orchestra dedicated to the training and development of young orchestral musicians in Singapore, the SNYO creates a perfect stage for young talents to strive towards producing exceptional orchestral performances.

To achieve this, rigorous auditions are held for aspiring musicians for Strings, Winds, Brass and Percussion sections four times a year. Applications are open to 10- to 18-year olds who play an orchestral instrument or pianists interested to learn an orchestral instrument. Read more about the application here.

Successful applicants can look forward to a rewarding orchestral experience and many opportunities to perform in Singapore and abroad, as well as participate in overseas tours, masterclasses and workshops. Many players also go on to play for the SSO, the Republic’s first professional orchestra.

sscc-lightboxChildren between the ages of 9 and 17, who are gifted with good voices and can carry a tune well, can audition for the Singapore Symphony Children’s Choir (SSCC)  to enrich their musical and artistic growth. The SSCC offers many varied performance opportunities, including singing with the SSO and SNYO. The SSCC programme, which progresses from a training to a performing phase, aims to nurture students’ vocal and musical development, at the same time, building discipline, confidence, and inspiring a lifelong love of classical music.

In December 2016, SNYO and SSCC will come together for the first time for a collaborative performance at the Victoria Concert Hall. Titled Colours of S.E.A., it will be a pre-tour concert ahead of their performance in Kuala Lumpur, at the Dewan Filharmonik Petronas, home of the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, for the 2016 Youth Orchestra Festival!

Led by SNYO Principal Conductor Leonard Tan and SSCC Choirmaster Wong Lai Foon, Colours of S.E.A. presents a programme brimming with Southeast Asian influences and water-themed music, including Vaughan Williams’ Sea Songs, Schubert’s The Trout, as well as the world premiere of Chen Zhangyi’s Water. Wang Chenwei’s The Sisters’ Island and Liang Wern Fook’s Xinyao Medley are also uniquely Singaporean works to listen out for.

When asked about leading an orchestra made up of youths, Dr Leonard Tan, Principal Conductor SNYO, Assistant Professor, National Institute of Education said: “It’s my privilege to work with the young, talented musicians of the SNYO for more than ten years in various capacities. What a joy to see so many of them blossom into fine and outstanding musicians! Graduates of the SNYO orchestral program acquire social, emotional, and intellectual skills that enhance their value way beyond their SNYO days. If you ask carefully enough, you will notice many successful professionals who were once a part of this historic organisation.”

SSCC Choirmaster Wong Lai Foon also had this to add: “Singing (with the SSCC) can help students become better speakers, as singing requires active and proper use of breath, as well as the lips and tongue to achieve good, clear diction. Singing in different languages also helps develop linguistic skills. For this programme, the choir will be singing in English, German, and Russian.”

The concert will be held during the school holidays, so if your child is also a classical music learner, make a date to catch this colourful pre-tour concert together. While lending your support to this crop of talented young performers, who knows, watching them perform might just motivate your own child to work harder on their musical skills so that they may be part of the orchestra or choir too one day!

Colours of SEA artworkSNYO & SSCC PRE-TOUR CONCERT: COLOURS OF S.E.A.
Wed, 7 Dec 2016, 7.30pm
Victoria Concert Hall

Singapore National Youth Orchestra
Leonard Tan, conductor
Singapore Symphony Children’s Choir
Wong Lai Foon, choirmaster

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