Conductor Lin Ah Leck dies of dengue

Singaporean conductor Lin Ah Leck.

Singaporean conductor Lin Ah Leck has died of dengue fever. He was 69.

Lin, who spent decades as a music teacher, conductor and composer, died in hospital on Sunday. This was the first time he had suffered from dengue fever, Chinese daily Lianhe Zaobao reported on Sunday.

The late musician had reportedly felt unwell last week, but did not receive treatment immediately as he mistook his symptoms for food poisoning. He had intended to conduct a show at the Tiang Lim Association last Thursday, but was too weak and was admitted to Changi General Hospital.

His condition eventually worsened, leading to organ failure and him losing consciousness.

The late conductor was one of the founding members of the Musicians Society of Singapore, an honorary council member of the Singapore Chinese Music Federation as well as vice-president of the Association of Composers (Singapore).

Lin obtained a certificate in music education from the National Institute of Education, and also furthered his music education in Sydney, Australia, and Illinois, United States, on scholarships.

Over the years, he conducted a wide range of musical groups - ranging from The Philharmonic Winds to community ensembles.

He was also commissioned by the Singapore Chinese Orchestra (SCO) to write several works, including Singapore River, which was performed at the 1999 Singapore Arts Festival.

SCO's executive director Terence Ho, who is also a Nominated Member of Parliament, recalls that the late Lin was a "fatherly" and "very down-to-earth" man. "One of my fond memories was when he composed for the SCO. He was such a talented composer.

"What inspired me was how, as a well-trained musician from Australia and the US, he was so passionate about promoting music to the community and schools."

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 15, 2019, with the headline Conductor Lin Ah Leck dies of dengue. Subscribe