The new academic semester has started for Singapore’s tertiary music education institutions and it was the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts Orchestra that got the ball rolling with a concert conducted by Lim Yau.
The first music to be heard was Mozart’s Overture To The Marriage Of Figaro. What was unusual here was the placing of the woodwinds in front of the orchestra, in a semi-circle facing the conductor. These players formed the chorus that piped the celebratory music in the short and witty work and they did their job well, refusing to be overawed by the strings. Putting the winds in the fore prepared for more of the same, which came in Mozart’s popular Concerto For Flute & Harp In C Major (K.299) with celebrated veteran British flautist William Bennett and young Singaporean harpist Sarah Wong as soloists. The sheer ebullience and total agreeability of the music had an ideal advocate in Bennett, who is amazingly nimble at 80 years old. His warm and sweet tone was a joy to hear, as was his crystal-clear articulation in the florid and running solo passages. He found a good match in Wong’s scintillating harp part, which served as additional accompaniment to the orchestra’s.
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Source: The Straits Times © Singapore Press Holdings Limited. Reproduced with permission.