The Singapore Chinese Orchestra (SCO) will perform in Hong Kong later this month and in Kuala Lumpur in December for the first time to showcase works by Singaporean and Malaysian musicians as well as its repertoire of Nanyang music.
Led by music director Yeh Tsung, the 85-member orchestra will hold two concerts in Hong Kong - at Tsuen Wan Town Hall Auditorium on Oct 17 and Hong Kong Cultural Centre on Oct 18 - at the invitation of the city government's Leisure and Cultural Services Department.
Then at the Dewan Filharmonik Petronas in Kuala Lumpur on Dec 8, the orchestra will perform as part of the Titian Budaya Singapore cultural festival organised by the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth in the Malaysian capital to mark 50 years of Singapore-Malaysia bilateral ties.
Last Friday and Saturday evening, local audiences were able to savour the orchestra's Hong Kong performances first at the two preview concerts SCO staged at the Singapore Conference Hall.
SHOWCASING NANYANG MUSIC
We are happy to be able to play in Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur finally. The Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra had performed in Singapore several times and it is good we showcase our unique Nanyang music repertoire, Chinese music with strong local flavour, there in return.
MR TERENCE HO, executive director of the Singapore Chinese Orchestra
Friday's concert, titled Essence of Nanyang, featured local composer Eric Watson's concert overture Mahjong Kakis, Malaysian Simon Kong's Izpirazione II - Rambutan, as well as SCO concert master Li Baoshun's performance of Chinese composer Tan Dun's huqin concerto, Fire Ritual.
Also performed was Chinese composer Liu Yuan's 2002 symphonic poem, Marco Polo and Princess Blue, which included the appearances of renowned Hong Kong tenor Warren Mok and Chinese soprano Wu Bixia, supported by the Singapore Youth Chorus.
At the Hong Kong Cultural Centre on Oct 18, both Mr Mok and Ms Wu will also sing the same piece, but with the Opera Hong Kong Chorus and Opera Hong Kong Children's Chorus instead.
On Saturday night, SCO performed its silent film concert, Ruan Lingyu's The Goddess, with music accompaniment composed by Singapore composer Law Wai Lun and Hong Kong composer Lincoln Lo. It will be played again at Tseun Wan auditorium in Hong Kong on Oct 17.
Composer Watson said: "I hope the Hong Kong audience will like my jazzy piece about mahjong, which is a popular game there too."
SCO executive director Terence Ho said: "We are happy to be able to play in Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur finally. The Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra had performed in Singapore several times and it is good we showcase our unique Nanyang music repertoire, Chinese music with strong local flavour, there in return."
SCO will stage a preview of its Kuala Lumpur concert, titled Cross Cultural Extravaganza, at the Singapore Conference Hall on Nov 28 at 8 pm, featuring works by both Singaporean and Malaysian composers as well as performances by local artistes including Singapore Idol Taufik Batisah, jazz pianist Jeremy Monteiro, wayang kulit group Kumpulan Sri Campuran and tabla player Jatinder Singh Bedi.