You know what they say, behind every great man is a great woman? Well, we say behind every successful orchestra is a successful conductor and his/her flying baton. The glue that unifies performers, the conductor also sets the tempo, listens critically and shapes the sound and direction of the ensemble. And Thailand's Renaissance Man, Somtow Sucharitkul is the glue of Festival headlining act, Siam Sinfonietta. Here is a note from the maestro himself :
A Note from Somtow Sucharitkul
Distinguished Silpathorn Artist of Thailand
Photo credit: Somtow's World
It is a pleasure and an honour to begin the Siam Sinfonietta’s planned tour of all the ASEAN countries in this 50th Year of ASEAN here in Johor Bahru.
Seven years ago, I founded the Siam Sinfonietta as an experiment in a novel basis for music education. Thailand, like many countries in our region, has many fine music instructors and the improvement of young players’ technical ability over the past decade has been impressive.
I felt that it was time to introduce a teaching method that went beyond technique, a holistic “Somtow method” that embraces the whole cultural context of music — the history, the psychological state of the composers, the acoustical expectations of listeners in different time periods, and most of all to address the question “why”, because the question of “how” is being very well dealt with in our conservatories and music schools.
One of the important features of this method is to enable musicians to fully express their experience of the music, to make it their own, while being more aware of the historical context.
A symphony orchestra is a microcosm of society. There are people with all sorts of different functions. Some people must play continuously; others must wait and count and deliver one telling splash of color, like a cymbal clash or a stroke of the timpani. Yet without any one of those contributors, the work would not be whole. And without each member of the orchestra listening to his companions, there is no music, no matter how technically accomplished each player might be.
If you like what we do, we also have a bunch of entertaining encores up our sleeve; I hope you will like us enough that we will have a chance to trot some of them out. Classical music is a great and beautiful treasure chest that we have inherited from the west, but in Asia, we have new things to say, and we are making this heritage our own.
Catch the brilliant Somtow Sucharitkul in action and the world-renowned 70-piece Siam Sinfonietta at A Thai Odyssey this Saturday (29th July, 8pm) at Film Studio 4, Pinewood Iskandar Malaysia Studios:
Headlining the concert programme this year is Thailand’s acclaimed symphony orchestra, Siam Sinfonietta with A Thai Odyssey on the final night of the festival. Conducted by co-founder and Thai-American composer Somtow Sucharitkul, the celebrated orchestra presents an explosive programme which includes love songs from the late Thai King Rama IX, Bela Bartok’s The Miraculous Mandarin. The concert will bring the festival to an exciting close with conductor Somtow’s own composition – the Suriyothai Suite.
Wagner, Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (Overture) (9 min)
Love Songs by His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej (25 min)
Intermission (15 min)
Sucharitkul, Suite from the Ballet - Opera Suriyothai (25 min)
Bartok, The Miraculous Mandarin (20 min)
VIP: RM 200.00
Regular: RM 100.00
Students/Senior Citizens: RM 50.00
Access for Pinewood Festival Pass Holders
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