Europe, International, My Concert Experience, Xin Saxophone Quartet

2018 Summer with my Xin Saxophone Quartet family

Xin saxophone quartet Amsterdam.jpg

We started our season rehearsing endlessly in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. After which we flew together to Zagreb, Croatia to perform at the triennial World Saxophone Congress. It is in its 18th edition and was held from the 10th of July to the 14th of July. Our program comprised of 4 pieces, all composed by Singaporean composers. Especially for the congress, we commissioned Sax-Drive! by Daniel Yiau and Transit Sketches II by Xin Saxophone Quartet’s resident composer, Jay Ong. The other two pieces were Homage by Dr. Zechariah Goh and The Serpent by Alexander Oon. What a privilege to present a Singaporean program at an international conference! I have never been more proud to be a Singaporean! #teamsingapore

“Xin saxophone quartet’s recital this afternoon was one of the best performances I have heard so far. They showed musical understanding in their playing. They were incredibly musical and well coordinated as an ensemble. They presented a wide range of tone colours and intricate details in articulations and dynamic contrasts. They were able to bring out different characteristics and styles of each Composer convincingly. We are very proud of you all for the wonderful performance and the wonderful composition!!” – Dr. Zechariah Goh

IMG-4887.JPG

10-12th August 2018, we now had the opportunity to present the same program for our locals at the annual Singapore Saxophone Symposium. It was held at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, Singapore. Other international artists include Michael Duke (Australia), Kyle Horch (United Kingdom), Joseph Lallo (Australia), Chien-Kwan Lin (Singapore/United States), Alfonso Padilla (Spain), Mary Osborn (Australia), Kenny Tsai (Taiwan/United States) and Calvin Wong (Hong Kong/United States). We presented our own recital on the 11th August and also closed the entire symposium at the Gala Concert with our showstopping Sax-Drive!

CAB3F69B-C791-4FD5-BE3A-834EDB94E424.JPG

Can’t get enough of Xin Saxophone Quartet?
http://www.thebandpost.com/2018/07/xin-saxophone-quartet-represents-singapore-at-world-saxophone-congress/
http://zagrebsaxcongress.com/index.php/hr/sudionici/umjetnici/item/706-xin-saxophone-quartet
http://singaporesaxophonesymposium.com/2018/programme/recital-by-xin-saxophone-quartet/

Advertisements
Standard
Europe, International

Nu breekt mijn klomp!

Dutch – English literal translation: now my clog (dutch wooden shoe) is breaking
Meaning: This is said when suddenly something unexpected happens or is said about which one expresses its utter amazement. (http://www.encyclo.nl/begrip/nu%20breekt%20mijn%20klomp)

This year in Amsterdam has nothing short of amazing. My highlight was studying with Arno Bornkamp, having conversations about his past with saxophone and life, playing Bach, transcriptions and working on pieces that I have referred to umpteen times on his CDs. I have grown not only as a musician but also as a person. I am already looking forward to what next year will bring.

IMG_0236[1]

I have made friends from all over the world, thanks to a very international group of students at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam. Chamber music was one of my favourite parts of the course, I worked in a saxophone duo with Yuka Sato. Also it was especially rewarding with the MOV.ensemble with Deborah Witteveen, Jos Baggermans, Mateusz Pusiewicz and myself, where we memorized quartet music and had the opportunity to work with Arno as well as the Apollo Saxophone Quartet.

In the experimental Creative Performance Lab (CPL) classes, we collaborated with scenographers at our sister school, the AHK Academy of Film and Danse. We created an approximately 2 storey high structure, projected film through it and of course choreographed movement and music for it. It was an intense 5 months of work, but the end product was very well received.

img_19762.jpg

Carnatic music aka takedimi, commonly associated with the system of music from southern India, were lessons I had quite intensively throughout the year. At the end of the year, we performed the World Premiere of Spanish composer, Silva Lanao’s piece entitled Libèl·lula for soprano saxophone, baritone saxophone, pan flute, flute and bass clarinet. The title of the course was called Contemporary Music through Non-Western Techniques, I found it extremely useful and have started applying it to all the music I perform!

I am excited for another year of music in Amsterdam, in the meanwhile do come around for my performances if I will be in your city!:

Melbourne International Saxophone Festival 2018
Take Flight with Merism Duo (Mary Osborn)
28th July 2018, 15h15 – 15h45
Tallis Hall, Melbourne Conservatorium of Music
http://www.melbournesaxophone.com/take-flight/

Melbourne Saxophone Ensemble
29th July 2018, 19h
Melba Hall, Melbourne Conservatorium of Music

Merism Duo in Sydney
3rd August 2018, 19h

8th Singapore Saxophone Symposium 2018
Xin Saxophone Quartet
11th August 2018, 15h – 15h30
Lee Foundation Theatre, NAFA
http://singaporesaxophonesymposium.com/2018/programme/recital-by-xin-saxophone-quartet/

Merism Duo
12th August 2018, 16h – 16h30
Lee Foundation Theatre, NAFA
http://singaporesaxophonesymposium.com/2018/programme/recital-by-merism-duo/

Singapore Saxophone Symposium 2018 Gala Concert (with Xin Saxophone Quartet & Octet combined with NAFA Saxophone Quartet)
12th August 2018, 19h30 – 21h30
Lee Foundation Theatre, NAFA

Merism Duo in Singapore
14th August 2018, 19h30 – 21h
Sinfonietta Recital Hall, Forte Musicademy

Standard
Europe, International, My Concert Experience

New city, new start at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam

It’s the last day of my first semester of Masters here at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam, Amsterdam University of the Arts. What a journey! From struggling to find accomodation to trying out dutch cheese/cuisine to the many performances with the CvA-Sax ensemble and Creative Performance Lab (CPL) team. I’ve enjoyed every step of the way – especially thankful for the weekly lessons with Arno 🙂 Taking a small festive holiday, then I cannot wait to jump back into practice again!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all🎄 xx

A little peek into our CPL end of semester performance:

 

 

Standard
Europe, International

It’s a wrap! … for now

What an experience in Bordeaux, France. Always good to be home in Singapore! For a change, I thought I would compile my favourite panoramic photos of my 2017 travels in Europe! Enjoy xx

C’était une expérience incroyable dans à Bordeaux, en France. Il est toujours bon de rentrer à la maison à Singapour! Pour changer, j’ai décidé de faire une compilation de mes photos panoramiques favorites de mes voyages en 2017 en Europe! xx

Sainte-Chapelle, Paris, France

Sainte-Chapelle, Paris, France

Barceloneta Beach, Barcelona, Spain

Barceloneta Beach, Barcelona, Spain

Royal Palace of Madrid, Madrid, Spain

Royal Palace of Madrid, Madrid, Spain

Praça do Comércio, Lisbon, Portugal

Praça do Comércio, Lisbon, Portugal

Lisbon, Portugal

Lisbon, Portugal

São Jorge Castle, Lisbon, Portugal

São Jorge Castle, Lisbon, Portugal

Jerónimos Monastery, Lisbon, Portugal

Jerónimos Monastery, Lisbon, Portugal

Sacré-Cœur, Paris, France

Sacré-Cœur, Paris, France

Musée du Louvre, Paris, France

Musée du Louvre, Paris, France

Musée du Louvre, Paris, France

Musée du Louvre, Paris, France

Paris, France

Paris, France

Paris, France

Paris, France

Panthéon, Paris, France

Panthéon, Paris, France

Paris, France

Paris, France

Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen, Denmark

Rundetaarn, Copenhagen, Denmark

Rundetaarn, Copenhagen, Denmark

Malmö Castle, Malmö, Sweden

Malmö Castle, Malmö, Sweden

Malmö, Sweden

Malmö, Sweden

Malmö, Sweden

Malmö, Sweden

Opernhaus Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland

Opernhaus Zürich, Zürich, Switzerland

Uetliberg, Switzerland

Uetliberg, Switzerland

Zürich, Switzerland

Zürich, Switzerland

Zürich, Switzerland

Zürich, Switzerland

Zürich, Switzerland

Zürich, Switzerland

Zürich, Switzerland

Zürich, Switzerland

Place des Quinconces, Bordeaux, France

Place des Quinconces, Bordeaux, France

Miroir d'eau, Bordeaux, France

Miroir d’eau, Bordeaux, France

Miroir d'eau, Bordeaux, France

Miroir d’eau, Bordeaux, France

Miroir d'eau, Bordeaux, France

Miroir d’eau, Bordeaux, France

Bordeaux, France

Bordeaux, France

Bordeaux, France

Bordeaux, France

Paris, France

Paris, France

Musée du Louvre, Paris, France

Musée du Louvre, Paris, France

Amsterdam, Netherlands

Amsterdam, Netherlands

Miroir d'eau, Bordeaux, France

Miroir d’eau, Bordeaux, France

Arcachon, France

Arcachon, France

Dune of Pilat, France

Dune of Pilat, France

 

 

Standard
Europe, International, My Concert Experience

Performances in Bordeaux, France

It is my 5th month living in Bordeaux and it has been an amazing time. I have a weekly incredible lesson with my teacher, Marie-Bernadette Charrier. Also a weekly sonate lesson with our amazing accompanist Hilomi Sakaguchi with Marie-Bernadette. For my weekly classical chamber music class, I play with a pretty international saxophone quartet with two French, one Argentinian and me (Singaporean). We have been working on Florent Schmitt’s Quatuor de saxophones, op. 102. As for the contemporary chamber music class, I play with a mixed ensemble of two violins, clarinet, flute and soprano saxophone, we’re preparing a Bulgarian piece for the end of year exam. Together with the Orchestre d’Harmonie (Wind Symphony), we presented an interesting program: orchestre d harmonie bordeaux
I also had an opportunity to share Singaporean music with my class in a conference. I presented the music of Dr Zechariah Goh and had to speak about him in French!

Three weekends back we had two visiting guests, Allison Balcetis and Masanori Oishi. It was three intense days of masterclasses, conferences and performances. In the concert on the last night, our class presented french composer, Benjamin Attahir’s Nouvelle Sous Esctasy for 12 soprano saxophones, 1 soprano and 2 percussionists.

It has been interesting being in Bordeaux, I have picked up phrases of Spanish (owing to the fact that almost half my class are Spanish!) and of course my french is getting a lot better. It was a cold cold winter (-6 degrees) but now it is beautiful in spring! The food here is incredible, good red wine, cheese and bread. I am sure that the friends I have made here will be friends for life. I am so fortunate to have this experience!

 

Standard