Since its inception in 2009, SMU Chinese Orchestra (SMUCO) strives to be a unique orchestra of excellence under the baton of Mr Quek Ling Kiong. The orchestra distinguishes itself through various cross-disciplinary works and creative programming. Other than its annual production, SMUCO has been actively involved in The Purple Symphony (TPS), Singapore’s largest inclusive orchestra.
Till date, SMUCO has performed in a wide range of performances ranging from university-wide events such as SMU Annual Arts Festival to external gigs with various external parties such as Esplanade.
SMUCO is made up of music enthusiasts whose mission is to promote the appreciation of Chinese Music to the community at-large and at the same time embracing the values of care and compassion. SMUCO prides itself on being a youthful, vibrant and unique Orchestra which has cultivated a refined taste in various music genres and art forms.
Q1. What performance opportunities can I look forward to in SMUCO?
A1. We host an annual concert where we get the autonomy to plan and perform our favourite songs. We also collaborate with The Purple Symphony (TPS), an orchestra for the special needs. We obtain CSP hours from this! Secondly, we are also involved in SMU's annual Arts Festival where we come up with all sorts of interesting programs; ranging from a joint performance with SMUCO Symphonia to putting up a professional documentary video series featuring our music and showing care for our society. Lastly, we are also involved in gigs and external engagements!
Q2. What genre of music does SMUCO usually plays?
A2. We cover a mixture of genres including both traditional and contemporary repertoires. You name it, we have it!
Q3. Do I have to buy my own instruments?
A3. No, you do not have to! We provide rental of instruments.
Q4. Are the training sessions rigorous in SMUCO?
A4. We only have training sessions prior to performances and hence there would be ample time for you to focus on your studies and also other hobbies! Moreover, many of us feel that training sessions are actually a stress reliever for us as we get to take a break from studying.
Q5. Can I join SMUCO if I do not have prior experiences in Chinese Orchestra?
A5. Sadly, we would not be able to accept people without Chinese Orchestra background as there would only be trainings when we have performances and hence there may not be enough time for you to pick up an instrument. However, we would be able to accept percussion players with musical background.
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SMUCO has not only been an enriching CCA journey for me so far- it has also been a fulfilling and meaningful learning experience. Because of our unique ensemble structure, we play pieces out of the ordinary- honing our skills as musicians, while also enjoying a tightly-knit musical community. -Gu Jiawen, Marketing Director, Year 2 Business
My student life became more exciting because of SMUCO as it gave me that something to look forward to every week. From staging one-of-the-kind concerts to forging lasting friendships with the special-needs musicians in The Purple Symphony, SMUCO is an eye-opener experience in many ways which cannot be found elsewhere.- Ng Shu Qi, Member of SMUCO, Year 4 Accountancy