Friday, July 26, 2013

A Symphony of Different Worlds


The Sacred Heart Canossian College is an all-girls’ Catholic school established in Hong Kong in 1860. This year, secondary three & four symphony orchestra students from the Macau branch of the College participated in a joint concert programme with NYP’s Symphony Orchestra. I truly enjoyed the concert even though it was a small crowd.

I arrived a tad bit early on the Wednesday evening on 17th July 2013 at the NYP Auditorium. The instruments were still being assembled on the auditorium stage by volunteers. I proceeded to take a seat in the rather sparsely populated auditorium – must be the coming examinations, I thought to myself.

Shortly after, our symphony orchestra (NYPSO), in their trademark black suits started to fill the stage accompanied by the contrasting white uniformed girls from Macau. They took their seats and promptly, an emcee appeared from the behind the curtains. We were told that the concert was starting and the first piece would be performed by both schools.

The opening piece was “Radetzky March” by Johann Strauss Senior, very apt for a joint performance. It conveyed the celebratory atmosphere of the successful cooperation between two schools. It seemed to me certain parts were not in sync, however, I still enjoyed it nonetheless. After the March concluded, the Macau girls left the stage and joined the spectators. The NYP symphony proceeded to play two other pieces - “Burgler’s holiday” by Leroy Anderson followed by “The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian” by Harry Gregson-Williams. I could picture parts of the movie in my head as the piece was played.

Next, the smartly suited NYPSO members took their instruments and strolled off stage while the young-looking Macau girls replaced them.  They took up a notably smaller space on the stage. They started with “L'Arlesienne Suit No. 2: Farandole” By Bizet, continued on with Mozart’s Symphony Number 20, and followed up with Converty Grosso By Vivaldi and Mozart’s Piano Concerto Number 12. The girls sounded as angelic as they looked, and every note seemed precise and I could not detect any skip of the beat. I especially liked the piano concerto. The pianist played with intense concentration and extreme ferocity. Her fingers few across the piano with lightning speed but also with impeccable grace.

Our visitors concluded the concert with the theme from the movie “Somewhere in Time”. Soon after, a token of appreciation was presented to the College. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get a better picture, as the teachers from Macau seemed to be avoiding the spotlight!

The atmosphere was upbeat and lovely throughout as both orchestras said their goodbyes and took pictures and gave hugs all around.

All in all, it was an amazing concert, with our Macau counterparts playing almost perfectly leaving me with the opinion that they truly are prodigies!

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By Sean Yap, Year 2, Diploma in Information Security

Sean enjoys playing recreational tennis and international chess. He has a huge interest in films and is addicted to watching movies. Writing articles are also a hobby for him. Writing allows him to be creative and express his opinions on different matters.

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