Principal, Staff & Teachers
KATRYNA TAN, STM
MM (Harp), BIArch (Hons.1),
FTCL (Harp), LTCL (Harp)
“Something may seem impossible to achieve…now. It is up to you to make the impossible POSSIBLE! This is what makes our music journey exciting.”
- Katryna Tan, excerpt from Katryna’s book “Unleash the Musician in You”
Katryna is an award-winning harpist with over ten years of teaching experience here in Singapore and Malaysia. Some of her students have since gone on to study the harp at various prestigious music schools including the Juilliard School in New York, Berklee School of Music in Boston, Royal College of Music (UK), Ecole Normale de Paris (France) and Singapore’s Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music and School of The Arts (SOTA).
Katryna Tan holds a Master of Music Degree in Harp Performance from the University of Michigan, USA. Based in Singapore and Malaysia, Katryna holds multiple roles in her harp career and her contributions have changed the landscape for harp in the region’s music scene tremendously. For her contributions, she was awarded the prestigious national Young Artist Award 2005 by the National Arts Council of Singapore and in 2011 she was awarded the prestigious “Setiawan Tuanku Muhriz” (STM) title by the King of Negeri Sembilan, Malaysia.
“Katryna’s passion is in music education and sharing the joy of making music.”
Katryna is a very active as an educator, sharing her passion of music. Katryna is an adjunct to the harp faculty in Singapore’s School of the Arts (SOTA) and Raffles College of Music. Since 2006, Katryna has been the Artistic Director to four Harp Festivals. In 2008, she was appointed as Harp Director to Cempaka Schools in Malaysia and is music director to Singapore’s premiere Harp Ensemble – Rave Harpers.
Besides creating a whole new generation of fine harpists in the region, she has also made a name for the region’s harpists with her students winning awards in international Harp competitions and being invited to perform in International Harp Festivals.
Few might know that Katryna’s first degree is a Bachelor of Interior Architecture (Honours) from the University of New South Wales, Australia. She graduated with a Gold University Award for being the most outstanding graduate of the year. Perhaps it is this creative background that spurs her on to her kaleidoscope of activities revolving around her music career. “PLUCK – The Harp Musical” Premiered in Nov 2012, is one of her latest creative projects.
Recently Katryna just revealed and shared her take on Secrets to A Successful Music Journey in her book “Unleash the Musician in You”. This excellent book embodies her teaching philosophies and also showcases the success stories of her students.
Katryna – Concert Harpist
As a Harp Recitalist, Katryna has performed several recitals internationally and in the region. Katryna was invited by the New South Wales Harp Society to perform in the Government House (2004), she also performed at the Adelaide Harp Festival in 2006 and her 2007 engagements include concerts in France and the United States. She has also performed in Japan, Hong Kong and Macau. Katryna has appeared as a guest soloist with the Singapore Chinese Orchestra, Singapore Armed Forces Band and the Braddell Heights Symphony Orchestra just to mention a few. She was also guest soloist with the renowned King’s College Choir from England and Dingyi Chinese Chamber Orchestra. Katryna has also performed with prestigious orchestras in the region including the Singapore Symphony Orchestra, Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, Macau Orchestra and Evergreen Symphony Orchestra (Taiwan). She was also invited to perform in the prestigious World Harp Congress 2011 in Canada.
Katryna is a keen supporter of Asian and contemporary music. She regularly plays and commissions works by Asian composers. In addition, she also composes and arranges music for the harp.
Besides solo works, Katryna performs chamber music regularly with her trio group – I-Sis trio, a unique combination of harp, violin and cello. Katryna also performs regularly with Singapore Symphony Orchestra Flutist Roberto Alvarez and other musicians.
Katryna’s collection of albums include “Water Dance”, “Harp On”, “Moments” (Harp and Cello) and “A Little Light Music” (Harp and Flute) and most recently “I-Sis Trio: Passion” and “La Noche” (Harp and Flute).
Academy Manager & Harp Teacher
“I am merely sharing my Music interest with my students seriously”
Rita first started learning to play the Kong Hou, a revived Chinese musical instrument, which resembles the western harp. While she was pursuing her degree in the United States, she had the opportunity to study the pedal harp from her first harp teacher ,Ms Hyun Jung Choi, who was a student of the late Ms Lucile Lawrence. Since then, she has been blessed with many opportunities to learn from amazing harpists along the way.
Rita has enjoyed performing both locally and overseas with her harp ensemble group -Les Harpistes Ensemble. But for more than a decade, Rita’s passion lies in teaching the harp. Rita not only imparts the technical aspects of harp playing but also the love and passion for the instrument.
In 2003, Rita became acquainted with Ms Katryna Tan and since then, both of them have been working very closely in making the Singapore HarpFest grow from year to year. Rita is dedicated to promoting the harp and this is her lifelong commitment. She was also the production committee of the first harp musical — “Pluck- The Harp Musical” in 2012.
Academy Manager & Harp Teacher
“Nothing great will be achieved without practice. Keep Harping”
Cheryl Tan’s musical journey began when she started learning the piano at the age of eight. Her knowledge of piano music and music theory increased under private tutelage with Mrs Serena Ng and Ms Josephine Koh. Cheryl went on to the Nanyang Academy of Fine Art (NAFA) where she majored in Piano and minored in Guzheng. In NAFA, she studied under some of the most renowned Singapore composers and musicians: the late Mr Leong Yoong Pin; Mr Phoon Yew Tien; Dr Soh Kay Cheng; Mr Lee Tack Fah; & Mdm Zhang Lu Fen. Cheryl graduated with a Diploma in Music from NAFA in 1993.
In 1988, Cheryl joined the Keat Hong Chinese Orchestra (KHCO) as Guzheng principal. Over twenty years, Cheryl participated with KHCO in many local and overseas performances where she had the privilege to work with many renowned musicians around the world. With her passion for zither instruments, along her music journey she picked up the Chinese Harp (Konghou) and naturally the Western Harp eventually. She was subsequently appointed konghou player/harpist for KHCO.
Cheryl joined Rave Harps in 2008. She is part of harp group – Les Harpistes Ensemble. Their recent works include Harp Tasting in SAM, Christmas concert at the Esplanade and Harpfest. Cheryl is one of the organising committee members for Rave Harps’ Harpfest series. She was also the production committee of the first harp musical – “Pluck – The Harp Musical” in 2012.
KEE LOO, ATCL (Harp)
“Teaching the harp is such a great joy! It is not just about imparting harp knowledge and techniques, but also kindling the students’ passion, helping them grow musically and have fun making music on the harp.”
A medical doctor by profession, Kee Loo has kept her passion for music very much alive. An avid harp player, teacher and performer, she also plays the piano and clarinet.
Kee Loo began her harp journey under the tutelage of renowned local harpist Ms Katryna Tan. She has also attended masterclasses with several master teachers, like Sydney-based Ulpia Erdos and Gabriella Dall’Olio, head of Trinity Laban Conservatoire.
A keen ensemble player, she has performed with the Rave Harpers and Les Harpistes Ensemble for the Esplanade Beautiful Sunday series and at the Esplanade concourse. She has also had solo performances in several charity concerts, and helped raise funds for needy causes.
She is a strong supporter of all things harp, and has been actively involved in Harp Festivals in Singapore, Hong Kong and Malaysia.
Despite her busy schedule, nothing makes her happier than to devote her free time to nurture the next generation of young harpists.
“The good musicians are those who understand how music works.”
Boon Hui is a music teacher and composer – a recently trekked career path to follow her calling after a 14-year career in the Ministry of Education, where she served as a teacher in 3 secondary schools and a junior college and an officer in the Ministry. She has since accumulated a wealth of experience working with students of a wide ranging from pre-schoolers to adults in her teaching portfolio. Her expertise in teaching includes piano, music theory, general musicianship, viva voce and programme note writing, and academic topics in the GCE ‘O’ and ‘A’ level Music syllabi.
A graduate with BA (Hons) in Music from Leeds University and Postgraduate Diploma in Education from the National Institute of Education, Boon Hui has been involved in the performing arts throughout her student days and career, playing the roles of performer, conductor, teacher-in-charge and event organiser. Boon Hui was active as a band member in Tanjong Katong Girls’ School and chorister in Temasek Junior College. Since her University days, she garnered a wealth of experience as chamber pianist, providing accompaniment to singers, instrumentalists and ballerinas.
Boon Hui is an avid listener to music of almost any genre, and her wide repertoire is clearly seen in the unique embrace of styles in her compositions. Her philosophy in music as an inclusive platform for enjoyment is also reflected in the approach she adopted in writing music. She wrote 调色盘, one of the songs in Aaron Lim’s EP, ‘To Protect’ and the theme song for the 60th anniversary of her alma mater.