Kinta Valley Symphonic Society’s (KVSS) recent ‘Be Spirited Away’ Concert on July 20 was a runaway success. The concert, held at Dewan Wan Chin Leong with a seating capacity for 900, was sold out to a mainly young audience, the targeted audience the organizers had hoped for.
The concert was performed by KVSS’s two orchestras, Kinta Valley Wind Orchestra (KVWO) comprising of 58 members and Kinta Valley String Orchestra (KVSO), 27 members.
The music for the concert included music from popular Japanese animated fantasy films such as ‘Spirited Away’ (the most successful film in Japanese film history), ‘My Neighbor Totoro’ and ‘Castle in the Sky’.
According to KVSS music director Eugene Pook the featured music, besides introducing popular Japanese anime music to a wider audience, was also to encourage the younger audience to experience the powerful effect of orchestral music.
The ‘Be Spirited’ concert was also the culmination of its KVSS/MPO Music Camp project. Rehearsals for the concert with Pook started in early June and included coaching for the strings section by violin professor Mayya Musaeva from Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris, Tg. Malim.
Additionally, from July 16-18, nine professional musicians from the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra (MPO) were in town, fine tuning the skills of KVSS members in preparation for the concert.
A day before, the nine musicians from MPO treated KVSS members and invited guests to a wonderful chamber concert which included works by Mozart, Bach and Poulenc.
MPO trumpeter John Bourque when asked about the KVSS musicians who participated in the camp project, described them as “bright, enthusiastic and very eager to learn”. Similarly for KVSS trumpeter, Chow Kok Chin, 16, who said he totally enjoyed learning all the new techniques from the MPO team.
Undoubtedly, KVSS, which was founded in 2010, is certainly growing from strength to strength.