CCA Previews ’17: Guitar Ensemble

By Nadiya Nesseer (17S03B), Secretary

Photos by Raffles Photographic Society

The Raffles Institution (Year 5-6) Guitar Ensemble (RJGE) has, over the years, grown to be one of the best fully-fledged Niibori guitar ensembles in Singapore at the JC level under the baton of Mr. Michael Gaspar.

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RJGE after a captivating performance at the school’s National Day Celebrations.

This year was an exciting year for RJGE as we took part in several exciting performances and competitions, including the prestigious 10th Guitar Ensemble Festival 2016 and held our very own biennial concert, Afinado. The whole experience was truly remarkable and memorable for each and every member in RJGE as it allowed us to showcase not only our classical guitar pieces that we have been working on since the beginning of the year, but also other hidden talents such as singing or being able to play other musical instruments such as the piano or the violin. Furthermore, in our concert Afinado, we put together a wide repertoire of songs ranging from classical songs such as ‘Canon in D’ and ‘Now Let Us To The Bagpipes Sound’ to popular songs such as ‘When You Say Nothing At All’ and self-arranged mashups of recent songs such as ‘One Call Away’ and ‘Love Yourself’. One particular performance that gained traction of the audience was our own rendition of ‘Thriftshop’ and a Chinese song  ‘小幸运’, which had them tapping along to the beat. It was definitely a night to behold for the entire ensemble as months of preparation had come into fruition and our efforts had definitely paid off.

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The junior ensemble performing a throwback to the classics.

RJGE is looking forward to taking part in the Singapore Youth Festival (SYF) in 2017, where we will be performing two beautiful pieces, ‘ I could have danced all night’ and ‘Concerto VI’ under the guidance of our instructor. Like in all other performances, the coming together of like-minded individuals passionate about making music together as one family, has proven to be the best experience thus far for RJGE.

As such, if you are a guitar enthusiast, or someone who enjoys creating music, or has absolutely no musical background but is interested in learning the guitar, this CCA for you! All Year 5 students are most welcome to join this family so long as you are dedicated and committed. No guitar background is required as those without prior knowledge would be able to learn from Mr Gaspar himself.

The juniors usually join the Junior Ensemble, where practices are held on Monday from 4pm to 6pm and on Wednesday from 2.30pm to 4.30pm. In the Senior Ensemble, practices are held on Mondays, from 5.00 p.m. to 7.00 p.m. and on Wednesdays, 2.30 p.m. to 4.30 p.m. Additional practices may be held on other days, if necessary, prior to major performances.

Everyone is welcome to the audition for this CCA. We promise you a fulfilling and amazing time in this ensemble.

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