Welcome to the new concert season about to unfold at the YST Conservatory.
This season, we explore the central theme Telling Stories. The idea derives from the 2019 Performers(‘) Present International Artistic Research Symposium (October), where we probe the idea of story-telling as a means of distorting discourse but also as a vital conceit of great art, and explore connected issues facing performers and performance practice in our present context. Happening alongside the symposium is the YST Open Day (October), where we invite the general public to come and engage with the spectrum of what we do.
Aptly for this exploration, Telling Beyond Words (September) presents three narratives which compel with their timeless resonance, yet are told without words - a response to socio-political injustice, a confession of secrets, and an exploration of the desperation of unrequited love. One finds an interesting juxtaposition in Of One Cloth (October), where YST faculty Prof Alan Bennett (tenor) and Assoc Prof Albert Tiu (piano) bring together the beauty of words and music in Brahms and Wolf Lieder. And in a refreshing twist to the traditional classical music concert experience, our student contemporary music ensemble OpusNovus and the London Sinfonietta (November) perform Steve Reich’s works in an unconventional time, space and setting.
We also celebrate stories that are already in progress. This year, we collaborate again with the Germany Embassy, conductor Kahchun Wong and the Nuremberg Symphony Orchestra in the second edition of Beethoven im Garten (October), a celebration of German-Singaporean friendship at the Botanic Gardens. We are also delighted to welcome pianist Paul Lewis (October) in recital and masterclass, concluding the rich story he began with three concerts last year exploring the music of Haydn, Beethoven and Brahms.
We are further delighted to share new facets to our educational offering. We welcome as Visiting Professor for the semester Karst de Jong, who joins us from his dual teaching roles in The Hague and Barcelona, and brings his expertise and insights on improvisation and its integration in contemporary classical music practice. With Mix With YST (August) and Double Reed Weekend (September), we invite enthusiasts in audio arts and double reeds respectively to join us in music-making. Do also join us for our Concerto Competition Grand Finals (August) and the Geneva International Music Competition Prizewinners Concert (October), where we recognise musical excellence, and for which admission is free (like most of our concerts and events).
Stories call for audiences. As this season’s narrative begins, we hope you will join us in witnessing and shaping the stories described above, the numerous others enclosed in this book, as well as the continually ongoing evolutions in the Conservatory.
Prof Bernard Lanskey
Dean, YST Conservatory
View our full season calendar here.