Sing a song of Singapore

Sing a song of Singapore
The SYC Ensemble Singers (formerly known as the Singapore Youth Choir) during a practice session with conductor Jennifer Tham.

SINGAPORE - The SYC Ensemble Singers may be one of Singapore's oldest choirs but it is known to prefer new music from contemporary composers.

As a result, the 44-strong ensemble often gets gifts of song in the mail.

Such presents and specially commissioned melodies are featured in the ensemble's 49th anniversary concerts on Thursday and Sunday at the Esplanade Recital Studio.

Titled We Are Singapore, the concerts feature unusual works such as Birth And Death, which involves the chorus rhythmically bashing rocks together.

The piece by Singapore composer Hoh Chung Shih was originally written for the choir's 40th anniversary in 2004.

The SYC Ensemble Singers' artistic director Jennifer Tham, 51, says: "This year is like a retrospective because we have new pieces written for our 50th anniversary next year."

The choir usually performs only two concerts a year but is planning many more over the next 16 months in the lead-up to its next anniversary.

First will be a performance in December under the baton of Philippine guest conductor Jonathan Velasco.

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