The Hong Kong YWCA Chinese Orchestra
Founded in 1962, the Hong Kong YWCA Chinese Orchestra is a music organization under the Hong Kong YWCA and is one of the Chinese orchestras with the longest history in Hong Kong. The Orchestra has organized performances regularly to introduce Chinese folk music of different styles to the public and to provide training and performing opportunities to local young musicians.
Beginning from 1996, the Orchestra’s concerts are mainly organized by the Hong Kong government, and were well received by the general public and the music profession. Apart from organizing concerts, the Orchestra participates actively in social services and performs for voluntary groups, including schools, social centres and elderly centres.
In recent years, the Orchestra has collaborated with an array of music virtuosi including Xia Feiyun, Jing Jianshu, Wang Fujian, Qu Chunquan (conductors), Li Zhen, Ma Di (dizi), Qi Baoligao (matouqin), Yang Wei (pipa), Jiang Kemei (banhu/jinghu), Zhang Gaoxiang (yangqin), Guo Yazhi (suona/guanzi), He Tao (erhu), Yang Xue (gaohu/erhu) and Luo Jing (zheng) as well as local music elites like Wai Sing-fat, Pang Yui-sing, Ho Man-chuen (conductors), Lo Wai-leung (suona/guanzi), Purple Lee (singer), Chau Chin-tung (percussion), The Bear Children’s Choir (choir) and Loo Sze-wang (sheng). In 2007, the Orchestra toured to Melbourne, Australia to perform a joint concert with Chao Feng Chinese Orchestra. All the performances have received great acclaim from the audiences and the critics alike.
Conductor: Chan Chiu-yin
Chan Chiu-yin is a seasoned music administrator and has been engaged in instrumental music performance, teaching of music, training of orchestras and arts administration. He is currently the Executive Director of the Windpipe Chinese Ensemble, an honorary committee member of the China Dizi Society, an honorary executive committee member of the Guangdong Dizi Society, Vice President of the Hong Kong Chinese Instrumental Association, an executive member of the Hong Kong Bamboo Flute Society, Resident Conductor of the Hong Kong YWCA Chinese Orchestra, and Conductor of The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology Student’s Union Chinese Orchestra.
Chan graduated from the Hong Kong Baptist University and the Hong Kong Institute of Education, with a Bachelor of Education degree with honours and a Certificate of Music Teaching. He has also taken Arts Administration and Musicology courses at HKU SPACE, Hong Kong, and the Modern Distance Music Education College of the Central Conservatory of Music, Beijing. He began learning wind instruments such as dizi, flute, houguan, suona, etc. and Chinese music conducting while he was still in secondary school.
Chan began learning dizi under Wong Ka-wai when he was young, and furthered his training in mainland China under dizi virtuosi Li Zhen, Zeng Yongqing, Yu Xunfa, Jiang Guoji and Da Ya in a bid to improve his technical knowhow of the arts of dizi.
Conductor: Tse Kim-fei
Tse Kim-fei started learning erhu at the Music Office in 1987. He entered The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts in 1994, majoring in erhu under erhu virtuoso Wang Guotong, and was awarded an Advanced Diploma in 1998.
During his studies at the Academy, Tse was Concertmaster of the Hong Kong Youth Chinese Orchestra and the Academy Chinese Orchestra. He travelled to performances in Southeast Asia and the United Kingdom with the Hong Kong Youth Chinese Orchestra and the Academy Chinese Music Ensemble. He has performed at the Hong Kong Arts Festival, Hong Kong Youth Music Festival, Government House concerts, Hong Kong Film Awards, the opening ceremony of Tsing Ma Bridge, and in CD records and TV commercials.
Musical Performance: The Bear Children’s Choir
The Bear Children’s Choir was formally established in 1997, building upon the core group of children who has been regularly performed and made records of children’s songs, stories and language learning materials as early as 1987. The Choir now has three groups: the Bear Cub (Kindergarten 1-3), the Bruin (Primary 1-4) and the Bear (Primary 5-Secondary 3); in which the Choir members continuous to receive musical training on diversify subjects.
The Music Section of the Bear Children’s Choir adopts a creative, improvisatory and interactive approach in the teaching and learning process, which integrates music, dance and drama. The young members are therefore required to receive training in vocal music, dance, compereship, storytelling, professional recording and videotaping, stage performances, making children’s MTV and web cast programmes, etc. The children are encouraged to explore their interests, participate in a variety of performances and voluntary work in order to apply what they have learned, and improve through practice.
The Choir participated in many major performances, including the Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra’s musical for children, A Precious Little Baby, programmes of the International Arts Carnival such as Cook Up Some Music, The Magic of Chinese Music, The Panda’s Diary etc., and performing at the Presentation Ceremony of the 21st Hong Kong Film Awards, among many others. The Choir has also been a many-times winner at the HKTVB Ten Best Children’s Song Awards.