Ever wondered what it is like to work with celebrities like Jennifer Lopez AND direct a live band performance at the U.S. presidential inauguration ceremony at the same time? We speak to Singaporean Music Director Lenny Wee, the man behind Jennifer Lopez’s showstopping medley performance at Joe Biden’s Inauguration earlier this year.
Our 5Qs series is a chance for you to get to know more about folks in the Singapore Global Network community, where we pose 5 questions to exciting individuals to find out more about what they do!
In 2003, fuelled by a love for the arts and music and a passion for Singapore, Michael Tay, the then-Ambassador to Russia, commissioned Russian composer Vladimir Martynov to compose a symphony about Singapore. The symphony, now titled UTOPIA, has been recorded by the London Philharmonic Orchestra under their LPO label and released worldwide in November 2020. But Michael’s passion for the arts would carry on in the later half of his career – as Founder and Director of The Foundation for The Arts and Social Enterprise, he has helped to connect many local artists to opportunities across the world. SGN speaks with Michael about how his passion has led him to build he bedrock for a thriving arts scene in Singapore.
Inspired by Singapore’s culture and identity, renowned Russian composer Vladimir Martynov accepted a commission by ex-Singapore Ambassador to Russia, Michael Tay, to compose a symphony in 2003. UTOPIA, which premiered in 2005 in Russia and performed in 2007 in Singapore, was most recently performed and recorded by the London Philharmonic Orchestra (LPO) and London Philharmonic Choir in Abbey Road. The symphony will be performed live in Singapore at the Esplanade in 2022. SGN goes behind the scenes and speaks to Vladimir Martynov on his creative process in creating UTOPIA and his experience getting to know about Singapore’s rich culture.
We know what it is like to see Singaporean noodles on the menu and wonder just what on earth is that. In our #mythbuster series, we hope to debunk some of these strange misconceptions that people have of our sunny island! 🇸🇬