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20/08 - 10/09

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In Collaboration with

Ruan Reimagined:
A Seminar-Concert

In collaboration with Esplanade — Theatres on the Bay

Ruanxian Association of Singapore

31.8.2023 (Thu), 7.30pm
Esplanade Recital Studio 滨海艺术中心音乐室

In the past 20 years, interest in the Ruan has been steadily increasing. Notably, the Singapore Ruan Ensemble has cultivated numerous Ruan professionals and significantly contributed to the Ruan repertoire. In conjunction with the 10th anniversary of the Singapore Chinese Music Federation (SCMF), this is a momentous year marking the birth of the Anthology of Singaporean Ruan Compositions, Singapore’s first anthology of original compositions for any Chinese musical instrument. Jointly published by the SCMF and the Ruanxian Association of Singapore, this book is edited by Mdm Zhang Ronghui, Ruan Principal of the Singapore Chinese Orchestra, President of the Ruanxian Association of Singapore, and Council Member of the SCMF.

The anthology features seven original Ruan compositions by four scholarship recipients – Wang Chenwei, Phang Kok Jun, Sulwyn Lok, and Derek Koh – with Chenwei and Sulwyn serving as associate editors. Remarkably, Kok Jun’s Distant Bells is included in the prestigious score anthology, China Music. Representative of Singapore’s original Chinese music and incorporating local musical elements such as Gamelan, these works have gained popularity among Ruan players and ensembles worldwide.

On 31 Aug. at 7:30 pm, the Singapore Ruan Ensemble and the Ruanxian Association of Singapore will present a concert titled “Ruan Reimagined” at the Esplanade Recital Studio with support from the SCMF. Mdm Zhang Ronghui and the four composers will share their creative stories, while outstanding local young musicians such as Clara Tan Su-min, Lo Chai Xia, and Jonathan Ngeow will showcase four works from the anthology. Together, let us reimagine the Ruan!

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曲目 Programme


《姐妹岛》双中阮协奏曲|王辰威 作曲

The Sisters’ Islands (Double Zhongruan Concerto) | Composed by Wang Chenwei

演奏:黄孜瑜、吴卓欣 | 钢琴伴奏:王俊霖

《钟声随想》大阮独奏|冯国峻 作曲

Distant Bells (Daruan Concerto) | Composed by Phang Kok Jun

独奏:饶思铭 | 钢琴伴奏:王俊霖 | 打击乐伴奏:许文俊


《破茧》阮四重奏|许文俊 作曲

Metamorphosis (Ruan Quartet) | Composed by Derek Koh



《竹林七贤》七重奏|骆思卫 作曲

Seven Sages of the Bamboo Grove (Septet) | Composed by Sulwyn Lok

#本曲由新加坡华乐团委约,于2022年1月1日首演 Commissioned by Singapore Chinese Orchestra, premiered on 11 December 2022

中阮:黄炜杰 、罗彩霞 | 大阮:曾靖文、饶思铭 | 古琴:佘伟铭 | 笛箫:黄炜轩 | 打击乐:巫崇玮

Programme is correct at time of publication and may be subject to change without prior notice.

10. 阮的新声 座谈暨音乐会 Ruan Reimagined A Seminar-Concert_新加坡阮咸学会_主持人Host_Zhang Heyang 张鹤杨.jpeg

张鹤杨 Zhang Heyang

主持人 Host



Established in 2021, Ruanxian Association of Singapore is dedicated to promote, popularise, innovate and communicate. As part of music education, the association will also be organising performance trainings for passionate learners. Encouraging further improvements of the professional players and enriching musicians with deeper knowledge are equally significant to popularising the art as well as grooming local professionals. The multicultural environment has also allowed the association to be able to explore and discover a bigger variety of forms and styles for Ruan compositions, establishing an array of local works. In addition to having the merit of being a local ensemble, the Ruanxian Association of Singapore will also be doing diversified performances via different media, reaching out to people from different parts of the world. While strengthening the professionals locally, the association will also be playing the critical role of communication such as creating overseas performance opportunities, fostering collaborations and ultimately, aiming to produce a bountiful and vast stage.

The Singapore Ruan Ensemble was founded in 2005 by Ms. Zhang Ronghui, the Ruan principal of the Singapore Chinese Orchestra, and Mr. Benedict Tan. It provides a platform for many music enthusiasts in Singapore to showcase their musical passion and continuously explore and pursue their ideals in music. Among the ensemble's more than 60 members, nearly half of them have received outstanding awards in international competitions at home and abroad, producing outstanding young performers such as Tan Su-min, Megan Tan, Lo Chai Xia, and Jonathan Ngeow. The ensemble strives for innovation in repertoire and performance, presenting performances at a high level of professionalism. They have been invited to perform for dignitaries such as President Nathan and President Tony Tan, collaborated multiple times with the master Liu Dehai, and participated in events such as China's inaugural Silk Road International Art Festival and the 20th anniversary celebration of the Taipei Liuqin Ensemble, receiving recognition and praise from various sectors. While carrying on the inheritance of traditional Chinese culture, the ensemble injects diverse musical elements from Southeast Asian ethnic groups into their works and performance forms, making their development even more profound and extensive. The ensemble invites master composers to collaborate, such as Mr. Law Wai Lun’s "Melody of Plum Blossom" and "Clouds over the Xiao and Xiang Rivers," and Master Liu Xing's "Reminiscences of Yunnan" and other classic works. They also have outstanding local young composers such as Wang Chenwei, Sulwyn Lok, Tan Kah Yong, Phang Kok Jun, and Derek Koh as resident composers, and their well-known works include "Confluence," "Childhood," " Concerto for Domra," "Ruan on Fire," "Distant Bells," "Metamorphosis," and other excellent pieces, which are loved by ruan enthusiasts. In their artistic journey of learning and development, the ensemble continuously researches, explores, and actively absorbs talent, actively cultivating outstanding artistic talents. The founding members of the ensemble have grown and flourished, with some being hired as performers by professional orchestras at home and abroad. Since its establishment, the ensemble has performed all over the world, never forgetting its original aspiration, and striving to make positive contributions to the inheritance and development of Chinese culture and art.

Chief Editor

Zhang Ronghui is the Ruan Sectional Principal of the Singapore Chinese Orchestra, President of the Ruanxian Association of Singapore, Director of the Singapore Ruan Ensemble, Council Member of the Singapore Chinese Music Federation and Consultant for the Ruan Committee of the Shaanxi Chinese Orchestra Society. She was an adjudicator for the inaugural Singapore International Ruan Arts Festival and Competition, the 2022 Central Conservatory Showcase in Singapore and the Singapore Chinese Music Competition 2022. Zhang Ronghui was ranked first in the Ministry of Culture’s assessment of professionals (Ruan performance) and many of her students have won awards at international competitions and secured auditions into professional orchestras in Singapore and abroad.

Assistant Editors 

Wang Chenwei is the Composer-in-Residence of the Singapore Chinese Orchestra, adjunct faculty at the National Institute of Education (NTU, Singapore) and the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, and also a council member of the Singapore Chinese Music Federation. As Head of Research and Education at The TENG Company, he is the main co-author of The TENG Guide to the Chinese Orchestra (2019), a 624-page book on instrumentation and orchestration.

Chenwei obtained his Magister Artium (five-year Master of Arts) with distinction and an Honorary Award (Würdigungspreis) from the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna, where he studied composition and audio engineering under a scholarship from Singapore’s Media Development Authority. He received the Young Outstanding Singaporeans award from Junior Chamber International in 2011 and the Top Local Classical Music award from the Composers and Authors Society of Singapore (COMPASS) in 2022. 

Sulwyn Lok is an NYC-based Singaporean composer who advocates the human connection in music, beyond cultural boundaries. Winner of Universal Music's UCompose competition and Best Original Music at the National Youth Film Awards, his works have premiered at the Cannes and Busan film festivals and toured festivals globally. His commissions include Samsung, arts councils of New York and Singapore, Singapore Chinese Orchestra, and the Singapore Symphony Orchestra.

Sulwyn graduated from New York University's Screen Scoring master’s program, fully sponsored by the Singapore Digital Scholarship. He also graduated as valedictorian from the YST Conservatory, majoring in Audio Arts and Science.

Sulwyn is co-founder of Poco Productions, SEA Music Academy Online, and the Victoria Chinese Orchestra; and is an executive member of the Singapore Chinese Music Federation Youth Chapter.


Derek Koh, touted as one of the most promising musicians of his generation, (The Straits Time Singapore), percussionist Derek Koh’s sensitive musical voice and varied musical ventures have afforded him the opportunity to perform extensively in the United States, Europe and Asia.


Derek joined the Singapore Chinese Orchestra as Section Percussion in 2022. He most recently performed with the Berlin Philharmonic new music ensemble ZeMU! Ensemble at the Singapore International Festival of Arts (SIFA) 2022, and is a regular sub with the Singapore Symphony Orchestra.

Derek chairs the Singapore Chinese Music Federation Youth Chapter, is Secretary-General at the Percussion Association of Singapore and Adjunct Faculty at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts and the Singapore Armed Forces Band.

Phang Kok Jun, known to be a multifaceted composer, Kok Jun’s music transcends the concert halls, with a repertoire that also includes theatre, film, and other forms of media. An award-winning composer both locally and internationally, Kok Jun is influenced by a wide variety of musical styles, and has been described as a composer who “comfortably melds Chinese, Western and popular idioms to excellent effect”. Interested in the unique relationship between music and storytelling, Kok Jun is constantly working with artists of various disciplines to discover new possibilities in music-making. He has held several residencies, most notably with Ding Yi Music Company from 2011 to 2021, and has had the privilege of being featured in major productions around the world, working with orchestras, theatre companies, chamber groups, directors, conductors, designers, and soloists. For more information, or to get in touch, please visit


Zhang Heyang has been with Lianhe Zaobao since 2018 and specialises in music journalism since 2020. He appears frequently as compere and moderator for both live and online productions with Singapore Chinese Orchestra and Singapore Symphony Orchestra. As a freelancer of Focus Publishing, he is a co-author of SCO's 25 anniversary commemorative book SCO Hidden Gems (Chinese version).


Tan Su-Min, Vice-President of Ruanxian Association of Singapore, First Class Honours (Best graduate) graduate of the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (University of Wales) and Master’s Degree graduate of the Shanghai Conservatory of Music was awarded both the National Arts Council Local and Overseas scholarship. She was under the tutelage of Zhang Ronghui and Liu Xing.

Tan Su-Min has achieved first prize in the Solo Zhongruan – Senior Category in the National Chinese Music Competition in 2004; the NAFA- Music Essentials Concerto Competition in 2008; and Open Ensemble Category in the National Chinese Music Competition in 2008.

She was invited by the Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra to world premiere Zhongruan Concerto No.2 in 2014 and 2015 at the Hong Kong Arts Festival.

Tan alongside with her twin sister and music composer Dayn Ng formed MUSA Music Collective band in 2015。MUSA’s youtube channel has garnered over 9 million views with their original and arrangement works.

Lo Chai Xia is the Soprano-ruan Principal in the Singapore Ruan Chamber Ensemble and the Secretary of the Ruanxian Association of Singapore. Chai Xia was also the Zhongruan Associate Principal of the SCO and adjunct teacher at the School of the Arts Singapore (SOTA). She graduated with a Bachelor of Music (Second Upper Honours) from the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts and learned to play the zhongruan under the tutelage of Zhang Ronghui. Due to her outstanding performance throughout the course of her studies, she was awarded the National Arts Council (NAC) Arts Bursary (Local) from the Year 2009-2013. In 2006, she clinched the 2nd prize in the National Chinese Music Competition, Zhongruan Open Category. In 2010, she participated in the Inaugural Beijing Ruan Competition and was awarded Bronze. She has travelled to countries like Indonesia, China and Taiwan to perform and in 2022, she performed in a commissioned theatrical music concert Get in Touch at the Esplanade’s 20th edition of Huayi - Chinese Festival of Arts, where she sang, acted and played music on her ruan.

Jonathan Ngeow is one of the most sought after Ruan musicians of his generation. His ability to captivate audiences with his intrinsic musicianship and dynamic presence, coupled with his passion for advocating Chinese music through his media presence redefines what it means to be a Chinese instrumentalist, making him one of the leading Ruan musicians of today.


A multi-award winner, Jonathan clinched the first prize (Zhongruan Open Category) at the National Chinese Music Competition 2010 in Singapore and performed his winning concerto with the SCO at the Prize Winners’ Concert. He was also awarded the silver prize at the inaugural Zhongruan competition organised by the China Nationalities Orchestra Society the same year in Beijing.


Jonathan graduated with First Class Honours from the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts in partnership with the Royal College of Music (London) and the Central Conservatory of Music (Beijing) under the tutelage of Mdm Zhang Rong Hui.

Koh Min Hui joined the Singapore Chinese Orchestra as a Zhongruan musician, before graduating from the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (NAFA) in 2011. Since 2006, Min Hui has been under the tutelage of Mdm Zhang Ronghui, Principal of Ruan in SCO.

Min Hui is the Zhongruan Principal of the Singapore Ruan Chamber Ensemble and committee member of the Ruanxian Association of Singapore. Min Hui is professionally trained to teach autistic children Ruan and has been teaching in Pathlight School since 2014. She is also the appointed Ruan instructor for the Singapore National Youth Chinese Orchestra from January 2020.

A multi-award winner, Min Hui was the only Gold Award winner representing Singapore in the 2010 Inaugural International Ruan Competition (professional youth category) organised by the China Nationalities Orchestra Society in Beijing. In 2008, she was the first person in history of the National Arts Council National Chinese Music Competition to clinch the First prize in the Zhongruan Open Category.

Kenny Chan, Singapore’s home grown ruan artist graduated with a Bachelor of Music (Honours) from Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts in partnership with the Royal College of Music (London) and the Central Conservatory of Music (Beijing). Kenny joined Singapore Chinese Orchestra (SCO) as daruan musician in 2023. He was under the tutelage of SCO Ruan Principal Zhang Ronghui and Jing Po, he studied sanxian performance under the tutelage of SCO Pluck Strings Sectional Leader Huang Guifang. Kenny is the founding member of Ding Yi Music Company, Singapore National Youth Chinese Orchestra and Singapore Ruan Chamber Ensemble. In 2010, Kenny was awarded with the first runner-up for Ruan Solo Competition in the National Chinese Music Competition. In the same year, he was appointed as Pluck Strings Principal in Ding Yi Music Company 2018, Chan joined the Suzhou Chinese Orchestra (SUCO) and was with SUCO on the well-received tour around Europe. He was awarded the Austrian Music Theatre Prize 2021 with SUCO.

Wong Wai Kit is a member of the Ruanxian Association of Singapore, a Ruan Musician in Dingyi Music Company. He is currently under the tutelage of renowned Ruan musician, professor at China Conservatory of Music, Wei Wei. Wai Kit began playing the Ruan at the age of 6. In 2016, he entered Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts. 2019, Started his degree program at Royal College of Music, London, where he graduated with triple Level 6 program consisting of Ruan Performance, Conducting and Orchestration. Wai Kit is also currently a student in China Conservatory of Music Master’s program specializing in Ruan Performance and Research.

Ng Zi Yu Lynn has been learning the ruan since the age of 5, under the guidance of Ms Xu Yi Ping. Since 2014, she has been under the tutelage of Singapore Chinese Orchestra Ruan Principal, Zhang Ronghui. Lynn is currently the Principal of the Singapore Ruanxian Youth Ensemble, and a member of the Singapore Ruan Chamber Ensemble and Ruanxian Association of Singapore.

Lynn attained 3rd Prize in the 2018 National Chinese Music Competition: Zhongruan Youth Category, and the Gold Award in the Singapore International Ruan Competition in 2020. In 2021, she was shortlisted for the 7th China Youth National Instrumental Music Education and Teaching Achievement Exhibition. In 2022, Lynn performed with the Singapore Ruanxian Youth Ensemble for the Singapore Chinese Music Federation Youth Chapter Inauguration Ceremony and Concert.

Lynn was the Chairperson of Chung Cheng High School (Main)’s Chinese Orchestra. She is now a member of the Ngee Ann Polytechnic Chinese Orchestra.

Wu Zhuoxin, who studied under Zhang Ronghui, Principal of Ruan in the Singapore Chinese Orchestra, is currently a member of the Singapore Ruan Xian Impressions Chamber Ensemble, a member of the Singapore Ruan Xian Society, a member of the Singapore Chinese Orchestra Association, the Deputy Head of the Singapore Ruan Xian Society Youth Group, and a member of the Singapore Youth Chinese Orchestra.

During her studies, Zhuoxin actively participated in many performances . Additionally, she is a member of the Eunoia Junior College Chinese Orchestra and currently serves as the President. In the 2023 Singapore Youth Festival, she clinched the certificate of distinction alongside the orchestra.

Seah Wei Ming. A chance encounter with the Guqin kickstarted Wei Ming’s deep interest in the Chinese literati culture. Under the guidance of Mr Zhong Zhiyue, he managed to achieve a “Distinction” grade in the 2019 Examination for Certificate in Professional Guqin Performance issued by the Chinese National Orchestra Society. Since then, he has been invited to perform Guqin for various art events, such as the opening ceremony of the first Singapore Guqin Arts Festival. 

Wei Ming currently teaches Guqin courses at the He Yue Zhai Guqin Music and Arts Centre in Singapore. He is also the Secretary-General of the Guqin Association of Singapore and a member of the Guqin Professional Committee of the Chinese National Orchestra Society.

Benjamin Boo. As an active and highly sought-after performer, Benjamin Boo joined Singapore Chinese Orchestra (SCO) and was the Percussionist from March 2018 to September 2022. In October 2022, he was promoted to Principal Percussion.

Benjamin started learning Piano from his parents at the tender age of 3. He was first exposed to Chinese Percussion at the age of 9 when he joined his primary school’s Chinese Orchestra. A year later, Benjamin began studying Chinese Percussion with Mr. Quek Ling Kiong, the current Principal Conductor of the SCO, for over a decade. Through Mr. Quek’s recommendation, Benjamin also picked up Western Percussion with Mr. Ngoh Kheng Seng (SCO). In 2007, he studied Western Percussion in Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (NAFA) under the National Arts Council Georgette-Chen Bursaries Award. Benjamin attained his Diploma in Music Performance in 2010, under the tutelage of Mark Suter (Associate Principal, Percussion, SSO). He then furthered his studies in Music Theory with Cultural Medallion Recipient, Mr Phoon Yew Tien. In 2014, Benjamin graduated with First-Class Honours for his Bachelor of Music (Hons) through the NAFA-RCM joint degree programme.

He graduated from the Royal College of Music (RCM, London) with Masters of Performance (Distinction) in 2016, under the support of the Neville Wathen Award. He was taught by renowned percussionists including David Hockings, She-e Wu, Matt Perry, and Ralph Salmins. His unique experiences in traditional Chinese Percussion allowed him to teach and perform traditional Chinese Percussion with RCM’s Percussion Department. While in London, he also performed with The Philharmonia, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Musical “Motown”, and the BBC Symphony Orchestra, with exclusive training under the BBCSO Pathway Scheme 2014 – 2015.

In 2022, Benjamin was part of the quintet that represented SCO for the highly-received performance, Klassik Open Air, that attracted 75,000 audience in Nuremberg.

Benjamin is also the Co-Founder and Ensemble Principal of local Chinese Wind and Percussion group - Reverberance, who strives to bring about a new era of Chinese music, through the combination of traditional and modern elements of the art form.

Benjamin proudly endorses Innovative Percussion, as well as Pantheon Percussion.

Ng Wei Xuan currently serves as the Dizi musician of the Singapore Chinese Orchestra. His passion for music has led him to explore diverse art forms and collaborate with visionary artists. He premiered Sulwyn Lok's Dizi concerto 'From Afar, the Moonlight' in 2021, commissioned by local ensemble, Reverberance. In 2023, he premiered Rebecca Tan's chamber work 'The Absence of' at Royal College of Music (RCM), London.


Wei Xuan achieved recognition in various competitions, being the first runner-up in the Dizi Open category at the National Chinese Music Competition 2018. He also won first prizes in the Ensemble category at the Singapore Chinese Music Competition in 2020 and 2022, showcasing his dedication to Chinese chamber music.


In 2023, Wei Xuan received the Best Graduate Award upon completing his Bachelor of Music (Honours) from the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, in partnership with the RCM and Central Conservatory of Music, studying under Yin Zhiyang.

Victor Ong has performed extensively as a soloist and chamber musician across multiple genres. His musical journey has taken him to concert venues across the globe, from the Sala dei Notari Hall in Italy to Carnegie Hall in New York.


Victor has been awarded top prizes in the Golden Classical Award Competition and the Manhattan International Music Competition. He was also awarded the Best Accompanist award in the 2016 NAFA Chinese Music Concerto Competition in Singapore. Additionally, he was the first and best performance award winner in the 2008 National Piano Ensemble competition, Vivace. An avid performer, he appeared as a soloist in the Asian Cultural Symphony Orchestra’s Inaugural Concert in 2016.


Victor currently serves in the faculty of Singapore Raffles Music College and its affiliated Raffles Talent Academy, where he serves as Head of Department In Piano Performance. He is also a co-founder of The Pianology Music School. He obtained his Bachelor’s Degree from the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music under Prof. Albert Tiu and his Masters Degree from the Manhattan School of Music under Horacio Gutierrez. Other past mentors include Susan Ng, Joseph Lee, Timothy Ku and Benjamin Loh.

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