We start the year on a ‘lighter’ note, with light projections taking over the façade of the Victoria Theatre and Concert Hall (VCH) every night from 22 to 31 January, as part of the perennially popular Light to Night Festival highlight, Art Skins on Monuments.
Every year, we use this festival to showcase local community chamber groups at VCH, as part of our mission of enriching our diverse communities through music. We have interpreted this year’s festival theme of “____ In Progress*” to be about music making during the pandemic. Each arts group performs live for the first time in months, and under strict safety rules. We also explore the phenomenon of digital music making behind the scenes.
In addition to this year’s Light to Night Festival programme by VCHpresents offers a hybrid of live and digital events, a first for the festival.
Live performances at the Victoria Concert Hall showcased four performing arts groups from Singapore’s vibrant music scene over two consecutive weekends. The themes of the performances explore heritage ad identity as well as the reinvigoration of traditional art forms.
On Friday 22 January, three of Singapore’s finest young pianists – prize winners from the 2019 National Piano and Violin Competition – performed selections from Prokofiev, Scriabin and Brahms in. In accordance with Safe Management Measures (SMMs), they performed twice over the course of the evening, once at 7 pm and then again at 9:30 pm, to an audience of 100 people each time.
The following day, on Saturday 23 January, Orkestra Sri Temasek took to the stage with their unique interpretation of music by the likes of Piazzolla, Rossini and Vivaldi on both western and traditional Malay instruments.
Harp Quartet La Vie En Harpe will perform this Friday 28 January, with an international repertoire, a musical trip of sorts around the world. The finale to the Light to Night VCHpresents programme on Saturday 29 January will be a showcase by the Sari-Sari Philippine Kulintang Ensemble, who will guide the audience through an exploration of kulintang, a thrilling style of music from the Philippines.
The Singapore National Youth Orchestra Percussion Ensemble joins Light to Night digitally this year, in this free performance recorded from the SNYO Studios. This performance is now available online for viewing.
The digital event line up included two Zoom webinars, featuring experts Dominik Streicher from MSM Productions and Wan Zhong Wei from Dancing Leg Productions who share what it takes to create a successful live stream, and provide a behind-the-scenes insight of what goes into recording an SSO concert.
As the Light to Night Festival 2021 concludes this weekend, it is illuminating to find hope in the progress and adaptability Singapore has shown in the face of the new “normal” as brought about by Covid-19. May the months ahead find all of us actively engaging and inspiring one another to keep discovering and create memorable experiences, as we continue to progress in an ever-evolving world.