Monday, June 27, 2016

Interview: Khew Yun Zhen and Friends in Concert (FREE) - 1 July 2016 (Fri), 6pm

Pianist Khew Yun Zhen will present a full-length chamber music concert at the Steinway Gallery on Friday 1 July 2016, 6pm as part of Madison Academy of Music's Faculty Concert Series (coincidentally where I also teach :p).

This concert promises to be quite an event with numerous guests including cellist Shernise Khor, violinists Lydia Wong and Alvin Wan, baritone Alvin Tan and tenor Leslie Tay.

Entry is free by RSVP. Check out our little discussion below, and email to reserve a seat!

The Mad Scene: Hi Yun Zhen, thank you for doing this interview with The Mad Scene. Firstly, what can we expect to hear at your Madison Faculty Concert at Steinway Gallery?

Yun Zhen: Hi Steven, thanks for having me! This concert will see me playing with many of my fellow musician friends in quite a varied programme from the Romantic and 20th century. I will be performing two sets by Bridge and Mendelssohn with my piano trio consisting of myself, Shernise Khor on cello and Alvin Wan and Lydia Wong on violin respectively. Our colleagues, tenor Leslie Tay will present a new transcription of Rachmaninoff's Vocalise with Lydia and baritone Alvin Tan will sing two numbers as well. I won't reveal the full programme, you'll just have to come and find out!

Sunday, June 26, 2016

New Zealand Youth Choir - 28 June 2016

The award-winning New Zealand Youth Choir will be performing in Singapore at Victoria Concert Hall on 28 June 2016. Get to know them better via the information below, and check out their exciting performance video while you are there!

New Zealand Youth Choir in Singapore - 28 June 2016

Of all New Zealand’s musical icons, the New Zealand Youth Choir with its members aged 18 to 25 has, more than any other, showcased the country’s youth and music in its 36-year history. The 2016 International Tour will be the Choir’s 11th overseas trip following previous visits to the UK, Europe, Canada, USA, Australia, Russia, the Republic of Korea and China. This year it will be travelling with an eclectic repertoire of music ranging from a 17th-century anthem by Peter Phillips to contemporary New Zealand music and Má¾±ori kappa haka waiata.

Apart from being an ideal stop-over destination for a group travelling to the Northern Hemisphere, the NZ Youth Choir has developed a warm relationship over 33 years with the Singapore Youth Choir, and 2016 will see the fifth collaboration between these two organisations. This time the performance venue will be the Victoria Concert Hall recently reopened after a major refurbishment. It is an iconic landmark in Singapore’s city centre and is well-known as the home of the Singapore Symphony Orchestra. The NZ Youth Choir’s concert will be on the evening of 28 June at 7.30pm.

Following its concert in Singapore the party will travel on to Prague on the way to the International Festival of Academic Choirs in Pardubice in East Bohemia. On 6 July the choir will arrive in the Northern French town of Le Quesnoy for a service and concert to commemorate the town’s liberation by the New Zealand Division in WW1. From there the choir will travel to Paris to participate in High Mass at Notre-Dame Cathedral and then on to the UK for concerts in Oxford University Church, St George’s Chapel, Windsor, St John’s Smith Square in London, Ely Cathedral and ending with a performance in St John’s College Chapel in the Cambridge Summer Music Festival.

Check out our Events Page for tickets!

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Musical Theatre and Classical Vocal Masterclass by NYC Teachers - 10 July 2016

Singaporeans now have the chance to be coached by two vocal coaches from established NYC institutions right in our home country. Taiwan-born Chun-Wei Kang's many appointments include coaching jobs at the famous Manhattan School of Music. Her MSM colleague Shane Schag has coached in numerous opera and musical theatre productions, bringing out the best in both professional and student singers. 

The masterclasses will be held at Madison Academy of Music on 10 July 2016. Classical voice with Chun-Wei Kang at 1pm to 3pm and musical theatre vocals with Shane Schag from 3.30pm to 5pm. Each participant will receive a 30 minute session for $90.

The masterclasses are free to observers so feel free to bring your friends! Check out for more information, and email to book a slot! 

Friday, June 24, 2016

Vocal Recital 'From Germany To Singapore' - 16 Aug 2016

Be mesmerised by this a vocal recital by Singaporean composer and baritone Xiao Chunyuan and Germany-based Singapore PR Li Jie, playing on 16 August 2016 at the Esplanade Recital Studio.

From Germany To Singapore, A vocal recital by Xiao Chunyuan and Li Jie

Showcasing operatic arias, duets, art songs and musical theatre songs, From Germany To Singapore by Xiao Chunyuan and Li Jie is a vocal concert not to be missed! Performing in this concert are Singaporean composer-cum-baritone Xiao Chunyuan and Singapore Permanent Resident Li Jie, with Beatrice Lin Rui-Jun at the piano.

Spanning from Germany, Austria; Hungary; Italy, Russia; China and Singapore, the two soloists will perform works by composers such as J S Bach, Beethoven, Schumann, Mozart, Bellini, Rossini, Rachmaninoff and Schonenberg. Two Chinese folksongs and compositions by Xiao will also be performed.

The concert will be held at Esplanade Recital Studio on 16th August 2016. Tickets are priced at S$20 and can be bought through Xiao Chunyuan and Madam Miao.

Their contact are as follows:

Mr Xiao Chunyuan @ 86911647

Madam Miao @ 92733596

Friday, June 17, 2016

Performance Review: 'Shrek the Musical' - 14 June 2016

Shrek the Musical - 14 June 2016 Performance
Review by Jeremy Lee
Running at MBS Mastercard Theatres till 19 June

For fans of classic musical theatre like me, it seems that almost every show that comes to town nowadays is an adaptation from a movie. For the good folks at the MasterCard Theatres at Marina Bay Sands, it’s clearly a winning formula, as the recent musical stagings of shows like Dirty Dancing, Beauty And The Best, Saturday Night Fever and Ghost prove - what better to provide instant audience recognition than a much-beloved movie?

The latest show in town is also one of those. Unless you are a pipsqueak or have been living in a monastery for the last decade, you would recognise Shrek as this ridiculously popular series of animated movies that redefined the genre. While watching an animated movie in days of yesteryear meant seeing a wholesome, child-friendly and very mainstream story of kind-hearted, classy princesses swept off their feet by handsome princes who slayed dragons, the first Shrek movie in 2001 revolutionised this, turning accepted narrative upside down and injecting knowing cynicism and parody into animated movies. It was DreamWorks Animation’s answer to the sanitised Disney behemoth and primed modern audiences into accepting a little reality into their animation diet.

RWAS's 'The Flying Dutchman' Sneak Peak - 10 June 2016

The Richard Wagner Association Singapore's held a sneak peak of their upcoming production of The Flying Dutchman in October. The gathering of invited guests were treated to a short presentation of the production's origins by President Juliana Lim and  Vice President Ronald Ling and highlights from the opera by local cast members Martin Ng, Nancy Yuen and Kee Loi-Seng with narration by Candice de Rozario who will be playing Mary in the production. Martin sang with gravitas in the Dutchman's monologue while Nancy sailed through much of her declamatory music with waves of resonance.

This is followed by a panel discussion with the production's creative team: Music Director Darrell Ang, Directors Chong Tze-Chien and Glen Goei and Chorus Master Albert Tay, led by Candice. We learned that the production will involve Asian influences in the production design, enhancing the opera's mystical elements with imagery of Asian folklore.

This event has certainly built up anticipation for the upcoming production in October. Check out the international and local leads at the RWAS Flying Dutchman website here.

Tickets are already available for sale at SISTIC. Check out the Events Page for the link! 

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Video Interviews: Cast of 'Shrek the Musical'!

Hawk and I had the pleasure of interviewing the cast of Shrek the Musical yesterday. This cast is selected in New York and many of them are touring in a performance for the first time. Audiences can look forward to a fantastic video backdrop, richly detailed sets and costumes and a musical score that was nominated for a Grammy in 2010. First, we got to speak to Lindsay Estelle Dunn who plays Princess Fiona.

Next, Kyle Timson shares with us what its like to perform as the titular character Shrek underneath that huge green fatsuit.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

'Odyssey, A Bassoon Journey' - Recital by Jo Anne Sukumaran and Pianist Beatrice Lin - 5 June

Bassoonist Jo Anne Sukumaran presents a full recital programme with works by Mozart, Weber, Mignone, Kohei Kondo, Koechlin, and more. Accompanying her is local pianist Beatrice Lin.

Jo Anne is a prolific orchestral and chamber musician in the local scene has performed in Thailand, Malaysia, Australia, the Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, Austria and Denmark. Check out her recital on 5 June, 4pm at Forte Academy of Music at 51 Waterloo Street. Click on the link below for tickets: