A night at the He Yue Su Yun Chinese Orchestra


Chinese orchestras are always stirring and grand, the classic instruments such as Yangqin, Guzheng, and Erhu lending themselves well to emotional, epic-sounding pieces that are unmistakably Chinese. This orchestra in particular was held in a suitably grand venue. On March 3, 2024, the Dewan Filharmonik Petronas at KLCC held the He Yue Su Yun Chinese Orchestra Concert, a celebration of the simultaneous 20th and 10th anniversary of Wu Music House and Persatuan Seni dan Budaya He Yue respectively. 128 musicians in total were gathered from all over Malaysia to perform on that momentous evening.

The event also saw many VIPs in attendance, such as YB Lim Hui Ying, the Deputy Minister of Finance Malaysia; Datuk Cheng Lai Hock, Honorary Advisor of Wu Music House and Persatuan Seni dan Budaya He Yue; and officials from Ministry of Communications Malaysia.

The concert featured a whole host of masters, each a specialist in their chosen instrument. Yangqin soloist Tan Yong Yaw and the band serenaded the crowd with A Midnight Escaping of Lin Chung, putting the melodious instrument to skilful use. Guzheng soloist Sara Heng and the band wowed audiences with their rendition of The Land of Qin, a stirring piece that evoked imagery of ancient cities and eternal mountains. Pipa soloist Sim Teck Sing and the band skilfully performed The Sword and the Scroll, a piece whose title refers to the traditional Chinese virtues of being equally accomplished in warfare and academic pursuits.

The Malaysian Guzheng Ensemble also played Reminiscence of Lin’ An. It was rare to see so many Guzhengs assembled in one place, as it is often a solo instrument, and the effect was unforgettable. Other pieces that were played at the concert included Malay Folk Suite, Enthusiastic Vigor, Harmony of Seven Colors – I. Green. Song of the Wind (Mongolian), and Harmony of Seven Colors – VII. Orange. Song of the Sun (Yi). As it was still the season for Chinese New Year music, the musicians from Yayasan Nanyang Press made their debut playing alongside the orchestra, performing the famous piece Big Day. All of the music played was beautiful and highly skilled, immersing the listener in the emotions and atmosphere of old China.

The music director and conductor, Goh Suk Liang said that his dedication to Chinese orchestra over the past two decades came from his deep love for Chinese music. He hopes that artists and the public will carry on the traditions of Chinese culture, ensuring that they can be inherited and cherished by generations to come.

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