Spellbound by classical music

MALACCA: Some 90 budding musicians of the Kolej Yayasan Saad (KYS) Orchestra gave a mesmerising show in Ayer Keroh recently.

More than 500 guests turned up for the two-hour performance led by music director Judy Leong Yin Mei together with conductor Maxwell Sim and his associate Adrin Teo Yee Chin.

Though only in their teens, members of the ensemble delivered a polished interpretation of well-known contemporary and classical pieces at the college’s main hall, much to the delight of the audience.

Among the 12 pieces played were music by James Swearingen such as Centuria and Majestica, regional pieces such as Pri Kit Nu from Thailand and Malaysia’s Umpan Jinak Di Air Tenang.

Contemporary numbers such as Billy Joel’s Uptown Girl, Dizzy Stratford’s Friends for Life and Steve McMillan’s Banana Rock had the audience tapping their feet and grooving to the songs.

The orchestra also took the bold step of playing Tchaikovsky’s Dance Of The Sugar Plum Fairy to expose the younger section of the audience to classical music.

During the intermission, the flute quartet serenaded the audience with Cat Stevens’ evergreen hit Morning Has Broken while a hearty five-piece percussion performance won thunderous applause from the floor.

During the encore, the orchestra played two numbers including Rasa Sayang Eh that got everyone clapping and singing along.

After the grand finale, the orchestra was complimented with a standing ovation.

Among the invited guests were 150 secondary school students and teachers from SMK Tun Mutahir, SMK Ayer Keroh, Malacca Girls High School, St Francis Institution and Methodist Girls’ Secondary School.

“I was thoroughly entertained the entire evening,” said engineer Henry Zulkifly, 45, from Tanjung Kling.

The orchestra is the brainchild of KYS founder Tan Sri Halim Saad, who wanted music to be a part of the college’s curriculum.

It has performed throughout Malaysia and at various events such as the 13th Non-Aligned Movement summit in Kuala Lumpur in 2003 and Thailand Cultural Village in Bangkok.

The orchestra goes on tour every year.

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