First JB Classical Music Fest

The first JB Classical Music Festival is from May 1 to 3
The inaugural Johor Baru Classical Music Festival, a 3-day educational and interactive musical experience, will be held from May 1 to 3 at the Berjaya Waterfront Hotel, Johor Baru.  Jointly presented by the Johor Society of Performing Arts (JSPA) and Euroasia Association of Performing Arts, the festival will be anchored by the National Symphony Orchestra from Istana Budaya under the baton of conductor, Mustafa Fuzer Nawi, and will feature soprano Cecilia Yap.

“We are excited to welcome the National Symphony Orchestra back to JB following their sold-out performance at last year’s JB Arts Festival,” said JSPA founder, Yap Siong Cheng.  “Having Cecilia Yap back in JB after 8 years is also an honour and we are looking forward to what will definitely be an unforgettable performance,” he added.

The JB Classical Music Fest is the second in the series of festivals after the JB Jazz Fest under the Johor Baru: International Festival City (JB:IFC) initiative organised by the JSPA to position JB as a leading festival city in the region for world acclaimed arts, music, cultural and lifestyle events.  JB:IFC festivals scheduled later this year are the JB Film Festival (11 – 13 June), the 12th JB Arts and Fringe Festival (10 September – 9 October) and the JB Food & Visual Arts Festival (October– December).

The line-up of artistes for the Classical Music Fest includes Singapore’s premier string quartet, the T’ang Quartet, whose last performed in JB in 2010.  The quartet’s creative and artful blend of East and West music and seamless reinterpretations of classical music will certainly appeal to both contemporary fans and traditional audiences.

Some of Malaysia’s most respected musicians and educators who will also appear at the festival are renowned classical pianist, Loo Bang Hean, editor of the Journal of the American Viola Society, violist Dr Andrew Filmer, president of the Euroasia Association of Performing Arts and member of the Panel of Music Examiners for Trinity College London, Angel Lee, and former sub-principal cellist of the National Symphony Orchestra, Jonathan Oh.  Each of these dedicated music educators are active chamber musicians who will be presenting a uniquely interactive and entertaining Lecture Concert to kick off the festival.

Joining them for two workshops, will be Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM) Malaysia National Consultant, Ryan Lewis.  The workshops aim to provide a platform, not only for students but also teachers, to gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of chamber music while aiming to increase the standard of classical music in JB by educating music teachers and providing them with more options on how to teach and nurture students.

Event poster for the inaugural JB
Classical Music Festival
The classical music fest will also feature enthusiastic students from Foon Yew High School String Orchestra who will present a mix of Eastern and Western classics to win the hearts of the local community who keenly support JB’s very own young talents.

“This is a fantastic line-up of talents that feature a good blend of established and respected musicians with up-and-coming talents for the community to rediscover the timeless genre of classical music,” said Yap.  He explained that the JB:IFC is in many ways, a natural step forward from the strong foundation of the annual JB Arts Festival.  The Arts Fest, which enters its 12th edition later this year, is the longest running arts fest in Malaysia that offers content from various disciplines and genres of the performing arts.

Yap said the JB:IFC is important because as the city expands its local and international reach, so must it continue to embrace and promote the arts as well as showcase the rich historical culture of Johor and Malaysia to its residents and visitors.  He is pleased that the JB:IFC perfectly complements the government’s initiative in promoting the Malaysia Year of Festivals in 2015.

The JB Classical Music Festival 2015 is made possible through the generosity of its partners like Berjaya Waterfront Hotel, Johor Baru as Official Accommodation Partner and MyTeksi as Official Transportation Partner.  Rentak Sejuta and Selebriti Online are the Official Online Media Partners in English and Malay respectively while Opus, Astro Channel 862 joins the family of partners as a supporting radio station.

Tickets for the JB Classical Music Festival 2015 are available from the JSPA office at The Black Box, Level 4 of Danga City Mall, in two tiers (Adults and Students/Senior Citizens), ranging from RM 38 to RM 198, while workshops are RM 30 per entry for non-ticket holders.  For more information, please contact +6019 7139900/+6019 7169900 or follow JB Arts Festival on Facebook:

A version of this was published in The Malaysian Insider on 24 April 2015

No comments:

Post a Comment