Sunday is the time when friends and family come together after a long week to share in laughter and joy. For the people at ThePiano.SG, Sunday is the time for piano lovers to come together, unwind and enjoy a music filled night in great company. For the 17th week in a row, the Pianovers Meetup successfully brought talent of all ages, backgrounds and countries together.
This week was certainly no exception. Early to the event were some new faces that included South African-born Keenan and German-born Lisa, who were already there at 4pm when Yong Meng was setting up. Other fresh additions to the group were Chee Beng, his wife Grace, son Jun En and daughter Shi Qi. One of Yong Meng’s old friends Max even stopped by for a visit with his wife and son, Esther and Ric.
After a brief dinner with Siew Tin, Yong Meng headed back to The URA Centre to greet the rest of the excited Pianovers with a brand new setup. Because the clear acrylic “Re:minisce” piano lacked a book stand for scores, the camera was shifted to the “To:” piano, to capture the raw talent up close. The new setup also included a change of poster placement.
We appreciate all the kind donations and contributions that have been made by the Pianovers at our previous meetings. We would like to say a big thank you to Pianovers like Jerome, who provided a pink USB clip on fan, as well as drinks and ice coolers on various occasions, Isao, who shared some of the snacks he brought along, Barrack’s mum, who refused change and instead wanted to contribute the money towards future Pianovers Meetups, and of course, the kind Pianovers who have helped Yong Meng out with cleaning up, packing up and the moving of equipment after each session.
Special mention must also be made for the kind and generous Pianover who donated two Mistral 8" turbine fans, and two white extension cables for the connection to the existing portable generator. These electric fans provided much-needed relief from the stale tropical heat, albeit for only an hour. Not to worry though, as Yong Meng is working hard on providing an alternative power resource that will last throughout the night!
The Registered Players Segment started with the touching piece 星语心愿, bringing back fond memories of an old Hong Kong movie with the same title that starred Cecilia Cheung and Richie Ren.
This was followed by Jimmy, who definitely entertained with his signature jazzy style covers of "Habanera" from the Opera Carmen, and "Dream a Little Dream of Me".
Joseph, who is known to the Pianovers for his lovely covers of Mandarin pop songs changed it up this week and surprised us all by playing classic 80s hit Careless Whisper.
Gee Yong also kept his audience on their toes by taking an oldie 上海滩 and giving it a signature “Gee Yong” spin to it. One of the newcomers Chee Beng was so amazed by it that he exclaimed, “I would never have imagined a classic Mandarin song could sound so attractive with piano solo!”. Well done Gee Yong!
South African tourist and first time Pianover Keenan, who is currently pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Music at the University of Pretoria, South Africa, also dazzled the group with a number from his repertoire, Prelude from Suite Bergamasque.
The final Pianover of The Registered Players Segment was May Ling, who played The Way You Look Tonight, a piece that won Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1936, thus concluding The Registered Players Segment.
During The Open Segment, Maxim conducted a mini-master class, giving tips on learning Tchaikovsky’s Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy from The Nutcracker Suite. He performed the version arranged by Mikhail Pletnev in Meetup #6, and shared with the group what the most effective way of learning this piece was.
We were certainly excited to see how helpful Pianovers are towards each other, and how Pianovers, like Maxim, are using The Open Segment as a chance to share experiences, tips and skills.
Newcomers Chee Beng and his son Jun En took to the piano as well. Chee Beng led by example with Richard Clayderman's Nostalgy, showing us all that a little bit of encouragement goes a long way.
Keenan and Lisa, who were both tourists, enjoyed themselves so much they even stayed throughout The Open Segment. Though Lisa is not a pianist, she was chatting and having fun with the rest of us, while Keenan entertained us with many more covers.
Through the common love of music, we have had the amazing opportunity to meet Pianovers from an array of different countries. Apart from Keenan and Lisa, who are from South Africa and Germany respectively, we had the pleasure of meeting Pianovers from Japan, India, and Russia. You’ll never know what to expect at each meeting, which is the true beauty of The Pianovers Meetup.