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National Piano & Violin Competition 2017

The National Piano & Violin Competition returns for its 11th edition in 2017! This biennial competition celebrates music excellence and is a unique platform to develop the performing skills of our young musicians, improve music standards and identify potential music talents. Join in the excitement as young musicians vie for top honours.

Supported by: National Arts Council Singapore & Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth

Start Sales Date

30 Oct 2017, 9am

Other Channels:
30 Oct 2017, 10am

Internet and hotline sales for this event close at 6.30pm on event day. Please proceed to any SISTIC authorised agent for ticketing assistance.

Promoter Name

Rating / Age Limit

  • No admission for infants in arms and children below 6 years old.
  • Children 6 years and above must purchase ticket for entry.
  • Admission is subject to tickets produced at the entrance.

Late Seating Advisory:

  • You are strongly advised to be seated 15 minutes before the performance start time.
  • No admission will be allowed into the venue once the performance has commenced.
  • Exceptions may be made at Esplanade's discretion depending on the nature of the performance.

Photography / Video Recording Rules

  • No Photography, Video recording and Audio recording is permitted for this event.

Through All SISTIC Channels
S$7 per ticket for 2-concert package.
[Valid with a purchase of tickets to 2 or 3 concerts that are at Victoria Concet Hall]

Music Studio, Victoria Concert Hall

9 Dec 2017 (Sat), 9am – 11am


Adjudicator: Ray-Chou Chang, violin


Featured as one of the duo-soloists with Julian Rachlin in Bach’s Double Concerto in 2014, violinist Ray-Chou Chang is highly sought after as a Soloist, Concertmaster and Chamber Musician. He currently serves as the Concertmaster of National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra, a position he held since 2009, and had been invited to play with Evergreen Orchestra as a guest concertmaster in 2005 season. Chang has performed throughout Europe, Asia and North America and has appeared as a soloist with orchestras such as Moscow Russian Philharmonic Orchestra, Voronezh State Symphony Orchestra, National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra, Young Musicians’ Foundation Orchestra of Singapore, Taipei Symphony Orchestra, Kaohsiung Symphony Orchestra, Kaohsiung Chinese Orchestra, LongTan Philharmonic Orchestra and New Century Symphony Orchestra Taipei.



Music Studio, Victoria Concert Hall

9 Dec 2017 (Sat), 12pm – 2pm


Adjudicator: Denis Goldfeld, violin


Denis Goldfeld belongs to the most outstanding violinists of his generation. Born to a family of musicians in Ufa (former USSR, now the Russian Federation), at the age of eleven he won the Russian National Violin Competition. In 1990 he was invited to Musikhohschule Lübeck by Zakhar Bron as a master student. At this time he won such respected international contests as Wieniawsky and Oistrakh Violin Competitions, international Music Competition in Bayreuth and many other prizes, including the Verbier Festival Academy Prize, awarded by Isaac Stern. As a result he came to international attention.

Dance Studio, Victoria Concert Hall

9 Dec 2017 (Sat), 9am – 11am


Adjudicator: Dennis Lee, piano


Dennis Lee was born in Penang, Malaysia.  At age 14, he won an Associated Board scholarship to study violin and piano (with Angus Morrison) at the Royal College of Music, London. There he was awarded the ARCM (Hons) in both instruments, and won many prizes including: John Hopkinson Gold Medal and Peter Norris Prize, Joy Scott Prize, as well as the Tagore Gold Medal for the most outstanding student. In 1967 he received the Bachelor of Music degree from London University with the only First Class Honours given for that particular syllabus. The next year, he attained the Master of Music degree from the Royal College. An Austrian Government scholarship then took him to Vienna where under Josef Dichler, he won the Akademie Diploma with distinction, and the Stepanow Prize. He later studied with Ilonka Deckers in Milan.



Dance Studio, Victoria Concert Hall

9 Dec 2017 (Sat), 12pm – 2pm


Adjudicator: Artur Pizarro, piano


Born in Lisbon, Portugal in 1968, Artur Pizarro gave his first public performance at the age of three and made his television début on Portuguese television at the age of four. He was introduced to the instrument by his maternal grandmother, pianist Berta da Nóbrega, and her piano-duo partner, Campos Coelho who was a student of Vianna da Motta, Ricardo Viñes and Isidor Philipp. From 1974 to 1990 Artur studied with Sequeira Costa who had also been a student of Vianna da Motta and of Mark Hamburg, Edwin Fischer, Marguerite Long and Jacques Février. This distinguished lineage immersed Artur in the tradition of the ‘Golden Age’ of pianism and gave him a broad education in both the German and French piano schools and repertoire. During a brief interruption of his studies in the USA, Artur also studied with Jorge Moyano in Lisbon, and in Paris worked with Aldo Ciccolini, Géry Moutier and Bruno Rigutto.

A Celebration of Youth Orchestras: MPYO in Concert - Elixir of Youth
Malaysian Philharmonic Youth OrchestraNaohisa Furusawa, conductorTengku Irfan, conductorLow Zi Yang, violinTENGKU IRFAN     New work                                (Singapore premiere, MPYO commission)BARBER                  Essay No. 2RAVEL                     TziganeDVOŘÁK                 Symphony No. 9 'New World Symphony'The MPYO and conductor Naohisa Furusawa celebrate youthful Malaysian musicians: 19-year-old pianist-composer Tengku Irfan conducts the world premiere of his new composition (an MPYO commission) as well as Barber’s Essay No. 2. Rising violinist 13-year-old Low Zi Yang is the young soloist in the passionate first movement of Ravel's Tzigane, and the concert concludes grandly with Dvořák’s most popular Ninth Symphony - "From the New World".
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Michal Nesterowicz, conductorHan Chang Chou, hornMarc-Antoine Robillard, hornGao Jian, hornJamie Hersch, hornWOJCIECH KILAR OrawaSCHUMANN Konzertstück for 4 Horns in F major, Op. 86KELLY TANG Two Symphonic Dances: Radiance and SparkMOZART Symphony No. 38 in D major, K. 504 “Prague”Kelly Tang’s Two Symphonic Dances: Radiance and Spark were commissioned for and premiered at the 10th anniversary of the Esplanade in 2012, while the inspiration for Konzertstück was Schumann’s response to the invention of the valved horn. The SSO horns tackle this showcase for the instrument, and the strings will feature in the vigorous Orawa by Polish composer Wojciech Kilar of The Pianist fame.Sponsored by Singapore Airlines
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“The most remarkable clarinettist of our times” -  Leipziger AllmanachLim Yau, conductorKari Kriikku, clarinetRIMSKY-KORSAKOV Scheherazade, Op. 35KIMMO HAKOLA Clarinet Concerto (Singapore Premiere)Finnish composer Kimmo Hakola’s Clarinet Concerto stamps its mark in the genre with modernity and rambunctious energy, laying out arresting rhythms and themes - including the dance celebrations of a Yiddish wedding  - that cannot help but grab attention. Described as a roaring success for the composer, the concerto will see its Singapore premiere by acclaimed Finnish clarinettist Kari Kriiku and promises to be a wild ride. Rimsky-Korsakov’s interpretation of the Arabian Nights, the popular Scheherazade suite, completes the evening’s delights for the senses.Sponsored byTote Board GroupIn Celebration of Tote Board’s 30 Years of Giving 1988 - 2018 to the Development and Promotion of Arts in Singapore.
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“One of the greatest movie musicals reborn” Sydney artsHubJoshua Tan, conductorCelebrate this iconic film of over 50 years and the winner of ten Academy Awards®, including Best Picture. The SSO plays Leonard Bernstein's electrifying score and memorable songs with lyrics by Stephen Sondheim live, while the newly re-mastered film is shown in glorious high definition on the big screen with the original vocals and dialogue intact. This classic romantic tragedy, directed by Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins and one of the greatest achievements in the history of movie musicals, features Robbins' breathtaking choreography and a screen play by Ernest Lehman based on the masterful book by Arthur Laurents. 
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Friends of the SSO Programme
Help us keep the music playing. The Singapore Symphony Orchestra is a non-profit organisation that depends on the support and donations of music lovers like you. It is only with your support that the SSO can continue to bring great music to its audience, and develop to its fullest potential. Benefits of being a Friend of the SSO includes priority booking, discounted tickets, exclusive Meet-the-Artiste sessions, tax exemptions*, a personalised ticketing hotline service, birthday treats and more! Click here for more details. With your continued support, we can make this happen. *Charity registration no.: 48-0003303-X NRIC numbers are required for issuance of tax exemption receipts.
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Patrick Dunachie, CountertenorTimothy Wayne-Wright, CountertenorJulian Gregory, TenorChristopher Bruerton, BaritoneChristopher Gabbitas, BaritoneJonathan Howard, Bass 
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Lan Shui, conductorCharles Castronovo, Rodolfo (tenor)Angel Blue, Mimì (soprano)Zhou Zheng Zhong, Marcello (baritone)Kelebogile Besong, Musetta (soprano)Dario Russo, Colline (bass)Zoltan Nagy, Schaunard (bass-baritone)Martin Ng, Benoît / Alcindoro (baritone)Jonathan Charles Tay, Parpignol (tenor)Singapore Symphony ChorusEudenice Palaruan, Choral DirectorSingapore Symphony Youth ChoirSingapore Symphony Children’s ChoirWong Lai Foon, ChoirmasterCherilyn Woo, Stage DirectorGenevieve Peck, Lighting DesignerPUCCINI La Bohème (Concert Version in 4 Acts)Young artists and chance meetings. In Paris and in love, trapped by circumstances, liberated by poetry. Revel in some of Puccini’s most luscious melodies as the Singapore Symphony Orchestra and Choirs present a concert version presentation of La Bohème, one of the most beloved operas of all time.
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Jason Lai, conductorIt’s another round trip of musical exploration with SSO Associate Conductor Jason Lai! Learn about the life of the composers behind the music and how they make whole symphonies out of building blocks of musical themes.In this second of three Discovering Music! concerts, Jason takes you on a journey from dream to dance to scaffold - see if you can follow the famous idée fixe - the persistent recurring theme in the music!
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Joshua Tan, conductorAlasdair Malloy, presenterBecome your favourite superhero for a day and don your capes and suits for an action-packed programme with Alasdair Malloy as SuperMac, the Kilted Crusader. The music will provide a real rollercoaster ride of super heroic sounds from the SSO, showing off the orchestra’s super-strength, super-speed and super-sound!
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Jason Lai, conductorÉlise Chauvin, sopranoDIANA SOH A is for Aiyah from ä bug i da (World Premiere)WEBERN Passacaglia, Op. 1MAHLER Rückert-LiederSTRAVINSKY Symphony in Three MovementsLIGETI Mysteries of the MacabreThe SSO presents the world premiere of A is for Aiyah, composed by young Singaporean composer Diana Soh, an alumnus of the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music and currently based in Paris. French soprano Élise Chauvin brings us on a journey of Mahlerian song through five lieder based on the poetry of  Friedrich Rückert, and then the avant-garde theatre of Ligeti’s Mysteries of the Macabre.
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Winfried Bönig, organLawrence Koh, sand artistA blank slate, infinite grains of sand, infinite possibilities. Conjuring a magician’s power, he channels the spirit of the music that encompasses all cosmic force through his delicate palms. Into the grains of sand he breathes life, an organic body. Sand artist Lawrence Koh animates The Planets by Gustav Holst in a celestial collaboration with organist Winfried Bönig. Widor’s standout work, the Toccata from Organ Symphony No. 5 has saluted countless weddings to date, its upbeat and charming character irresistibly captivating.
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Distinguised star pianist Yefim Bronfman will step in for Lang Lang for the concert on November 30, playing Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 and Bartok’s Piano Concerto No. 2. The recital on November 29 will be cancelled. All Lang Lang ticketholders will obtain a refund from SISTIC, who will be contacting customers by e-mail from October 12 onwards.‘The hottest artist on the classical music planet’ The New York TimesLan Shui, conductorLang Lang, pianoGRIEG Peer Gynt: Suite No. 1, Op. 46BARTÓK Piano Concerto No. 2 in G majorGRIEG Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 16Superstar pianist Lang Lang returns with two piano concerti performances, the fiendishly difficult Bartók No. 2 and the expressive classic by Grieg. Rounding out the programme is Grieg’s Peer Gynt Suite No. 1 of “Morning Mood” and “In the Hall of the Mountain King” fame.
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Lan Shui, conductorYefim Bronfman, pianoROSSINI             The Thieving Magpie overtureBEETHOVEN      Piano Concerto No.4 in G major, Op.58BARTÓK             Piano Concerto No.2 in G majorLang Lang has cancelled his Singapore concerts due to inflammation in his left arm. Pianist Yefim Bronfman has accepted the SSO's invitation to perform on November 30.In this gala double-bill of piano concertos, distinguished pianist Yefim Bronfman returns to Singapore to perform the fiendishly difficult Bartok Piano Concerto No. 2, notorious for testing even the greatest pianists to their limits; and Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4, embodiment of elegance and vigour in unity.
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“Jaw-dropping virtuosity” - San Diego Union-TribuneLan Shui, conductorLeonidas Kavakos, violinMUSSORGSKY Khovantchina: Introduction “Dawn on the Moscow River”SHOSTAKOVICH Violin Concerto No. 1 in A minor, Op. 77TCHAIKOVSKY Symphony No. 1 in G minor, Op. 13 “Winter Daydreams”Acclaimed Greek violinist Leonidas Kavakos returns to Singapore with the grotesque grandeur of Shostakovich’s relentless Violin Concerto No.1. Lan Shui opens the concert with the gorgeous dawn song that opens Mussorgsky’s opera Khovantchina, and concludes with Tchaikovsky’s First Symphony, an atmospheric collage of “Winter Daydreams” that foreshadow his talent for balletic drama and endless capacity for heartfelt melody.
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Kazushi Ono, conductorZhang Manchin, viola WALTON Viola ConcertoBERLIOZ Symphonie Fantastique, Op. 14Dark fantasies. Unrequited love. A witches’ sabbath. An episode in the life of an artist. Berlioz’s radical masterpiece Symphonie Fantastique comes alive in the hands of Japanese maestro Kazushi Ono. It is paired here with Walton’s Viola Concerto, gorgeous music drenched with lively rhythms and jazzy harmonies.
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Jason Lai, conductorIt’s another round trip of musical exploration with SSO Associate Conductor Jason Lai! Learn about the life of the composers behind the music and how they make whole symphonies out of building blocks of musical themes.In this last of three Discovering Music! concerts, find out how Hungarian composer Bartók makes everyone in the orchestra practise extra hard, because in his Concerto for Orchestra, everyone's a soloist!
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“Her performances brim with lyricism and wit” – The Guardian on Alina IbragimovaLan Shui, conductorAlina Ibragimova, violinBERG Three Pieces for Orchestra, Op. 6BRAHMS Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 77BARTÓK Concerto for OrchestraRising star Alina Ibragimova is one of the hottest names in classical music today, and she returns with Brahms’ Violin Concerto in D – a lush painting of noble lyricism exquisitely written for the instrument. Berg’s thoroughly modern “Drei Orchesterstücke” provides startling contrast, as does Bartók’s richly scored Concerto for Orchestra, promising a showcase of every musician on stage.
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Lan Shui, conductorMAHLER             Symphony No. 7 in E minorMusic of shadows and luminance, calm and fanfare, Mahler’s Seventh Symphony has divided opinion with its vivid array of contrasting instrumental range, orchestral colour and moods. Whatever your perception of night, Mahler leads the listener through moonlit dreamscapes and grotesque nightmares, culminating in a finale of daylight.
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Claus Peter Flor, conductorChristian Blackshaw, pianoBEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 4 in G major, Op. 58BRUCKNER Symphony No. 9 in D minor, WAB 109Critically acclaimed British pianist Christian Blackshaw, renowned for his sensitive interpretation and deeply felt performances, is the perfect soloist for the lyricism and soulfulness of Beethoven’s beautiful Piano Concerto No.4. German maestro Claus Peter Flor leads the SSO in the monumental architecture of Bruckner’s final symphony.
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A Celebration of Youth Orchestras: SNYO in Concert - To London From America
Singapore National Youth OrchestraPeter Stark, conductorSamuel Chan, clarinetGERSHWIN                             Cuban OvertureCOPLAND                              Concerto for ClarinetVAUGHAN WILLIAMS          Symphony No. 2 ‘A London                                                 Symphony’ Go on a trans-atlantic musical trip with the SNYO and guest conductor Peter Stark, Rehearsal Director of the European Union Youth Orchestra and former Conductor-in-Residence of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. Join them in a musical journey that takes off with the Caribbean beats of Gershwin's vibrant Cuban Overture, through the bittersweet lyricism and jazzy wit of Copland's Clarinet Concerto, and arriving in the British symphonic cityscapes of Vaughan William's A London Symphony.
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SSO Babies' Proms
Have you ever seen a kid conduct the SSO? Bring your little ones to the ever-popular SSO Babies’ Proms, a unique concert experience where you are not expected to sit still nor sit quietly in the concert hall! A perfect way to introduce children – including the kid in you - to the world of classical music concerts!Pre-concert activities will be held at half an hour before each of the respective shows.
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Alina Ibragimova, violinMusicians of the SSORussian-British violinist Alina Ibragimova joins SSO musicians in an all-Russian programme across three Russian greats in their characteristic musical modes. The sweet yearnings of Tchaikovsky’s lyricism give way to the impish energy of Prokofiev and finally to the dark astringency and twilit enigma of Shostakovich’s Third String Quartet, which he considered one of his best.
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Peter Hanson, violin/ conductorSSO MusiciansFrom Gabrieli to Handel, take a trip with UK period instrument violinist Peter Hanson through the elegance and riches of the Baroque greats, whose genius is displayed in their rich writing for voice and instrument – for which they often treated one like the other. A multitude of solos is key to the design of the concerto grosso, a compact instrumental showcase that the likes of Biber and Vivaldi developed to spectacular heights. Arias from Handel’s most popular oratorio, Messiah, are just a tiny sample of the vast treasure troves of Baroque musical drama. Purcell’s pioneering work setting English language theatre music, and the lively dance-operas of French Baroque master, Jean-Philippe Rameau, equally deserve your listening ear.
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“Meltingly beautiful tone, flawless intonation" — The New York TimesLan Shui, conductorQin Li-Wei, celloHAYDN Cello Concerto No. 1 in C major, Hob VII b/1BRUCKNER Symphony No. 3 in D minor, WAB 103Written in the 1760s and lost for 200 years, Haydn’s Cello Concerto No.1 has become a staple of the cello repertoire since its rediscovery in 1961. On the other hand, Bruckner’s heroic Third Symphony, sometimes called the “Wagner Symphony”, exists in at least six versions. Catch these contrasting works with cellist Qin Li-Wei under the direction of Lan Shui.
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Distinguished star pianist Yefim Bronfman will step in for Lang Lang for the concert on November 30, playing Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 and Bartok’s Piano Concerto No. 2. The recital on November 29 will be cancelled. All Lang Lang ticketholders will obtain a refund from SISTIC, who will be contacting customers by e-mail from October 12 onwards.Lang Lang, pianoDEBUSSY BalladeLISZT Piano Sonata in B minor S. 178ALBENIZ from Suite Española, Op. 47GRANADOS from Goyescas, Op. 11DE FALLA Danza ritual del fuegoCatch popular Chinese pianist Lang Lang in this solo recital before his concerti night. The programme of French and Spanish inspiration promises an evening of fiery colours, restless energy and evocative enchantment.
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Joshua Tan, conductorSingapore Symphony ChorusSingapore Symphony Youth ChoirSingapore Symphony Children’s ChoirEver wondered what it’s like to sing along with the SSO in the Victoria Concert Hall? Associate Conductor Joshua Tan and the SSO bring you a sparkling collection of musical treasures for the yuletide season, complete with a sing-a-long segment where you can join in the chorus! 
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Jennifer Lien, sopranoShane Thio, pianoIvan Heng, director & set designBrian Gothong Tan, multimedia design & set designFear of rejection and painful loss of love, breaking up is hard to do. La Voix Humaine, Francis Poulenc’s tragédie lyrique of Jean Cocteau’s monologue is an intimate, powerful and moving solo opera work. Directed by Ivan Heng, join soprano Jennifer Lien, pianist Shane Thio and multimedia artist Brian Gothong Tan as they bring to life a conversation between a woman on the edge and her soon to be ex-lover.
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Okko Kamu, conductorElina Vähälä, violin SIBELIUS Finlandia, Op. 26JAAKKO KUUSISTO Violin Concerto, Op. 28SIBELIUS Symphony No. 5 in E-flat major, Op. 82Celebrate the 100th anniversary of Finland’s Independence in this grand concert featuring Finnish violinist, conductor and composer Jakko Kuusisto’s Violin Concerto, played by its dedicatee Elina Vähälä. No celebration of Finnish nationalism is without the works of its greatest musical son, Jean Sibelius – the majestic Symphony No. 5 concludes the programme opened by Finland’s unofficial second national anthem, Finlandia.
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“Of all his works this was the most personal… We were both in tears… so deeply did we feel this music and the sinister premonitions it disclosed.” – Alma Mahler.Eliahu Inbal, conductorMAHLER Symphony No. 6 in A minor “Tragic”Written in an apparently happy period of his life, Mahler’s “Tragic Symphony” is often described in the exact opposite of terms: nihilistic, dark, foreboding. The tender slow movement aside, it “ends in hopelessness and the dark night of the soul” with its infamous hammer blows.
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23 FEB: GOLD 50 - THE KING'S SINGERSPatrick Dunachie, CountertenorTimothy Wayne-Wright, CountertenorJulian Gregory, TenorChristopher Bruerton, BaritoneChristopher Gabbitas, BaritoneJonathan Howard, Bass24 FEB: THE KING’S SINGERS WITH THE SINGAPORE SYMPHONY CHILDREN’S CHOIRPatrick Dunachie, CountertenorTimothy Wayne-Wright, CountertenorJulian Gregory, TenorChristopher Bruerton, BaritoneChristopher Gabbitas, BaritoneJonathan Howard, BassSingapore Symphony Children’s ChoirWong Lai Foon, ChoirmasterIn 1968, the original six King’s Singers came together through their shared love of singing and quickly became renowned for their mesmerising performances and the unique diversity of their music. From the rich polyphony of sacred renaissance music to familiar tunes you hum to, GOLD charts a journey through the music that’s defined their career over the last 50 years, and moves on to exciting and unexplored musical worlds. An alchemy of ancient and modern, serious and light-hearted, expected and unexpected. GOLD crowns half a century of dedication to music, and looks ahead with unbridled energy to the next 50 years and beyond. The second day of their Singapore visit also presents a very special collaboration with the Singapore Symphony Children’s Choir. The marriage of charming virtuosity and youthful energy promises a memorable evening of delights.
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Carlos Kalmar, conductorJan Vogler, celloNARONG PRANGCHAROEN PhenomenonSHOSTAKOVICH Cello Concerto No. 2 in G major, Op. 126DVOŘÁK Symphony No. 6 in D major, Op. 60Leading Thai composer Narong Prangcharoen’s Phenomenon begins this fascinating programme with its invocation of mysterious natural phenomena. Then, explore the dark and eerie soundscapes of Shostakovich’s Cello Concerto No.2, before concluding the night with Dvořák’s trademark symphonic melodies.
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Event Date
Sat, 9 - Sun, 10 Dec 2017

Sat, 9am and 12pm
Sun, 3.30pm and 7.30pm

Ticket Pricing
(Excludes Booking Fee)

National Piano & Violin Competition 2017
Standard: S$10

National Piano & Violin Competition 2017 Masterclasses
Standard: S$8

Seating Plan