Hosted by the Raffles Institution Military Band and Raffles Symphonic Band for a 3 day exchange program, the Meiji University Meiji High School and Junior High School Wind Orchestra makes their debut tour to Singapore on 23 March.
Playing to a full house, the three bands presented a finale concert on 26 March at the School of the Arts Hall, with the Meiji band performing a full program of classic wind band works, anime music and medleys that reflect the Japanese pop culture.
The Band Post spoke to a few members of the audience for their thoughts post concert.
“I think that the concert was fascinating. It was a eye opening experience to see a Singapore band and a Japanese band playing together and playing various familiar tunes,” Xing Fei
“Meiji band sounded really good, they have good musicality and it seems like they are enjoying their music performance while swaying together on stage. It is very heartwarming when they played Home as it feels like a different cultural experience for everyone. I was mind-blown!” Jasmine Teo
“The concert really amazed me. I enjoyed listening to the wonderful music and watching the talented young musicians perform. I aspire to play music as well as the bands in the future,” Kylie Ramirez
“The young Japanese band musicians have strong foundation in their music training. The have long hours to practice their instruments and rehearse in a full band setting, and are technically competent to manage very demanding music. The Meiji band has overall acceptable tonal production and are sensitive to the expressiveness of music; very alert and responsive on stage throughout. I feel that the Japanese education system stresses a lot on specialization rather than mediocracy. It is good to see that their band movement is growing strong and healthy despite some unfavourable disruption. We have so many young audience in the concert interacting with one another, who really show their love for music. This is good, but for the standard of band in Singapore, we still have a long way to go – I hope that we continue to strive for excellence in our nation,” A/P Ho Hwee Long
Raffles Institution Military Band / conducted by Lim Yean Hwee
St. Anthony Variations / William H. Hill
Raffles Symphonic Band and Alumni / conducted by Lim Yean Hwee
Hill Song No. 2 / Percy Grainger
Miss Saigon / C.M. Schonberg, arr. Koh. Shishikura
Gelato Con Caffe / Toshio Mashima
Meiji University Meiji High School and Junior High School Wind Orchestra / conducted by Masato Suzuki
West Side Story Selections / Leonard Bernstein
El Camino Real / Alfred Reed
The Last Letter from Murdoch / Masanori Taruya
Prominence Bird / Masaru Tanaka
Zen Zen Zense [Your Name] / Yojiro Noda
Autumn Leaves / Joseph Kosma
Uta-hime Hibari Misora Medley / Kunihiro Sugiura
Japanese Graffiti II – Kyu Sakamoto Memorial / S. Yokotani
HIghlights from Spirited Away / Joe Hisaishi
Andante Cantabile from Rachmaninov Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini, Op 43
Home / Wong Kah Chun
Combined Band / conducted by Masato Suzuki
El Cumbanchero / Rafael Hernandez, arr. Naohiro Iwai
The event is sponsored by the Japan Creative Centre, Embassy of Japan.