UCSI University orchestrates musical tour de force with world-renowned conductors

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Malaysia – The UCSI University Chorale reached a new apotheosis of its performing history when it performed Mozart’s Requiem with world-acclaimed conductor Andreas Delfs and the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra (MPO).

Delivering a vocal performance as comprehensively assured as it was expressive, the Chorale’s rendition of the technically demanding vocal score received rave reviews and Delfs made it a point to compliment the Chorale for its rhapsodic quality.

“Receiving generous praise from such an established conductor is significant as it shows how far UCSI has come as a musical force, not only in Malaysia, but in the region,” said UCSI’s Institute of Music Director Professor Dr P’ng Tean Hwa.

“This is also the second time UCSI is performing with the MPO—a world-class orchestra that features leading musicians from 25 countries—and it speaks volumes about the quality of the Chorale. It is great exposure for the students to collaborate with acclaimed conductors and orchestras and I’m gratified to see how far we’ve come.”

Dr P’ng said that the Chorale’s recent performance is a strong follow–up to its first collaboration with the MPO on Mahler’s Symphony No 2, widely known as the Resurrection Symphony, then conducted by renowned conductor Benjamin Zander in 2015.

He added that UCSI’s strong association and network with the best music conservatories, musicians and conductors opened doors for precocious students who want to chart careers in classical and contemporary music. The successful collaborations with Delfs and Zander also showed that the students had the propensity to perform with the world’s best.

Delfs is the conductor laureate of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra while Zander is the conductor at the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra and the Boston Philharmonic Youth Orchestra.

To date, the UCSI Chorale is the only university student choir to perform with the MPO. Established in 2007, the UCSI Chorale stands out as one of Malaysia’s foremost vocal ensembles. It has quickly developed a reputation at home and abroad, winning accolades at international chorale festivals and summits.

Some of the Chorale’s notable achievements are gold awards at the International Choral Festival Orientale Concentus III 2010 in Taiwan, the IFCM World Choral Summit 2012 in China, the 11th China International Choral Festival 2012, the 4th Hong Kong International Youth and Children’s Choir Festival 2013 and the 7th Grand Prix Pattaya Festival 2014.

The Chorale is housed at UCSI’s Institute of Music—Malaysia’s foremost music school in both the classical and contemporary fields. It is directed by Prof Ian Lim Kean Seng who is widely acknowledged as the doyen of Malaysian chorus masters and voice teachers.