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Music student wins top prize in Italy Percussion Competition

25 Nov 2014

Andrew Chan (centre) receives his prize from the judges
Andrew Chan (centre) receives his prize from the judges
Andrew plays Timpani during the competition
Andrew plays Timpani during the competition

Andrew Chan (Music Studies, year 3) recently clinched the first prize in the 19 to 25-year-old category of the Italy Percussion Competition (Timpani) at the Italy Percussion Festival organised by the Italy Percussive Arts Society. Andrew was the only Asian who won a prize at the event.

 

In the competition, Andrew had to perform a different piece for each of the three rounds. He said all the contestants were of a high calibre and well-trained, so the winning difference depended solely on their live performance on stage. He attributed his success not only to his hard work but also many others who had helped him prepare for the event, especially his teachers in the Department of Music. “When I found out that the competition would be held in a small room of a hotel, I knew that the choice of mallets would be a key factor to overcome the strong echo -- if I chose a pair that was too hard, it would be too loud, but if they were too soft, the sound would not be clear enough. I discussed at length the choice of mallets with my two music teachers at HKBU and they provided many suggestions, and helped me a great deal to overcome the problems resulting from the location, enabling me to outperform others,” said Andrew. 

 

Andrew started playing percussion instruments only four to five years ago, and learnt to play Timpani two years ago. He thanked the Department of Music for its support, and said he was fortunate because the Department is equipped with the largest collection of percussion instruments among local higher education institutions.

 

The Italy Percussion Competition is an international contest for percussion instruments, including marimba, vibraphone, timpani, snare drum, and drum set. This year marks the 12th edition of the annual event, and jury members include world-renowned artists.