Melody Quah serves up pictures of Mussorgsky and Malaysia this July

On Thursday July 7th, celebrated Malaysian pianist Melody Quah, once described as a “poet with titanium fingers” by the Vancouver Sun, will be serving up a programme of Mussorgsky and Malaysian composers at a concert at UCSI University.

Quah, prizewinner of the 7th International Paderewski Competition held in Bydgoszcz, Poland, has performed widely as a soloist across Asia, Europe, Australia, and North America, as well as at home with the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra.

She will give the Malaysian premiere of two works commissioned from Adeline Wong and Tazul Tajuddin at her concert, Crossings and Mediasi Masa II respectively. 

Fresh off the board, Wong’s 2021 Crossings is written in response to Bach’s keyboard masterpiece the Goldberg Variations, and promises lots of excitement as is the KL composer’s characteristic style.

Tazul’s Mediasi Masa II (Mediation of Time II) is also linked to the Bach classic, creating a synergy between the Goldberg Variations and with his own earlier work Mediasi Masa – A Memoriam, of which this piece forms part of a series.

Quah’s centerpiece is Mussorgsky’s timeless Pictures at an Exhibition, which promises to be an aural treat. 

Pictures of Malaysia

As an avid supporter of Malaysian new music, Quah also appears on stage with guest trombonist Lance Low playing works by our local composers.

Low, a member of the Oulu Symphony Orchestra in Finland, is an active soloist in chamber recitals, wind ensembles and orchestras in Malaysia, Taiwan, Hong Kong, China, Singapore, Vietnam, Japan, Germany, France and Finland, 

He serves up a variety of local works for trombone from Ainolnaim Azizol, Jessica Cho, C H Loh, Johan Othman and ZhiYong Tan.

In particular, the works of from Ainolnaim, Cho and Tan are written especially for Low after a masterclass in trombone that was organized earlier this year.

Ainolnaim’s MiMaR VI: Titi is an electroacoustic compositions for solo trombone where the player interacts with a soundscape recorded in the coastal area around Rantau Abang, Terengganu, known for its leatherback sea turtle nesting. Cho’s Guatavita meanwhile is a quirky observation of countryside life during her trip to the Colombian town.

ZhiYong Tan’s Amnesia is for trombone and piano, exploring implications of the disease through music. The concert also features Johan’s 2011 work whose shadow would fall on, which explores the play of time within the relationship between the trombone and piano lines, and Loh’s 1994 piece Night In Hamar, inspired by the midnight sun of Norway with echoes of the folksong Rasa Sayang as you’d never heard it before.

In all, a picturesque concert that will brighten up your week!

Modern Malaysia and Mussorgsky
Melody Quah, Piano and Lance Low, Trombone

Date: July 7, 2022 (Thursday)
Time: 8pm
Venue; UCSI Universtiy, Recital Hall, Block G

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