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Concert Review: The Pipa Quartet's confused concert

Published on Aug 24, 2014 3:34 PM
The Pipa Quartet, formed in 2013, comprising (from left) Samuel Wong Shengmiao, Ivan Chng Wei Jie, Goh Xue Qi and Jeremy Wong Xin Rui. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

Despite advances in modern science and technology, the development of traditional musical instruments has largely stagnated in the past few decades.

At first glance, the Pipa Quartet's new conception of the electro-acoustic Pipa may seem ground-breaking, but is implanting a pick-up to the instrument and adding electronic manipulation to its sound really innovative?

Helmed by multi-award-winning Pipa virtuoso Samuel Wong, the ensemble consists of Jeremy Wong, Goh Xueqi and Ivan Chng. At their concert on Friday at the School of the Arts' concert hall, they explained the need to push the boundaries of the instrument, which allowed them to venture into genres of music the instrument would otherwise not have been able to play.

Perhaps they could look no further than at our very own Singapore Chinese Orchestra and its successful attempts at jazz and popular music.

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