FOLLOWING its presentation of Teresa Teng Tribute Concert last year, the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra (MPO) continues to manifest its versatility in an upcoming concert themed Celestial Serenade on June 1, 2024 at Dewan Filharmonik Petronas, KLCC.

The concert pays homage to the rich sounds and harmonious tunes of Chinese classical music, shining a light on the importance of suona, the woodwind classical instrument in Chinese culture. The MPO, under the baton of Jebat Arjuna Kee, will collaborate with Liu Wenwen, one of the most outstanding suona performers. Based at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, she has demonstrated her suona artistry at the Sydney Opera House and Arts Centre and John F Kennedy Centre, Washington DC.

Together with the MPO, Liu will present Gong Guotai’s Hundred Birds Worshipping the Phoenix and Ode to Kylin composed by Kong Zhixuan. The former is one of the staples featuring the suona imitating the chirping of birds whereas the latter is a tribute song to the auspicious hooved chimerical creature whose appearance marks either the imminent arrival or the passing of an illustrious ruler.

Also included in the programme is Tan Dun’s Crouching Tiger Concerto taken from Ang Lee’s award-winning movie in 2000. Written and inspired by the distinguished cellist Yo-Yo Ma and premiered at the Barbican Centre Festival in London that same year, the MPO’s performance of this work will feature its very own cellist Dylan Lee who has won many accolades at international competitions.

Audience will also be treated to Li Minxiong’s visually powerful Flying Dragon Leaping Tiger and Zhu Jianer’s Sketches in the Mountains of Guizhou.

Ticket prices range from RM238 to RM458.