NUS Guitar Ensemble
From December 3 to 6 in 1996, Prof. Kiyoshi Koyama of International Niibori Guitar Music Academy visited Singapore. He is active as a conductor of Niibori Guitar Ensemble and Niibori Guitar Orchestra A-group, and a concert master of the A-group. This time, he was invited to instruct a guitar ensemble of National University of Singapore (NUS).

In Singapore, there are a few guitar ensembles using Niibori Method now. In 1981, Yamaha Music School in Singapore that was the largest music educational institution in Southeast Asia and had over 50,000 students at that time, invited Niibori Guitar Ensemble conducted by Dr. H. Niibori for a concert at Victoria Memorial Hall. Their concert held on April18 was broadcasted over a nationwide radio network, and 200 records were sold immediately in the hall. As Niibori Method had been researched deeply and original guitars had been introduced by Mr. Robert Ruth preceded the concert, the sponsor arranged this concert with solid confidence. And the result was a great success and exceeded their expectation. The promoters said in chorus that no guitarist ever had such a successful concert, and the sponsor told Dr. Niibori like this; 'you celebrated your birthday on the way to Singapore, and today is the birthday of our new history. You presented us the new birthday of Singapore.' At that time, professor Koyama participated in the concert tour as a leader of the ensemble and Mr. N. Shibayama who is the present chief editor of this magazine was a member of it.

Following the successful concert, in July 1981, Prof. Toshio Matsumoto who is the vice president of Niibori Guitar Music Academy Joetsu campus, was invited to Singapore to have a lecture for the instructors of guitar ensembles in Southeast Asia. And next, in 1984, the instructors visited the Niibori Guitar Music Academy head office in Tokyo for research. As we wrote above, the exchanges between Singapore and Japan have become active year by year. NUS is one of our old friends that we have been deepening a friendship for years.

This time, Mr. Alexander S. Abisheganaden who was an instructor and a conductor of NUS knew that Niibori Guitar Orchestra had played 'Guitar concerto in A Major Op.30' by Giuliani at Orchard Hall in November 1995 by Monthly Harmony and he wrote us to ask the music score for NUS's next regular recital.

Niibori Guitar Orchestra has so many scores for a guitar ensemble and a guitar orchestra, and some of them require players a professional technique. Without an instruction by a professional instructor, it is difficult to reproduce an ideal music. Therefore, such scores never be sold in stores. Only the members of International Guitar Orchestra Association (IGOA) can have them since they know Niibori Method, original guitars, proper formations and a way of performance very well. 'Guitar Concerto in A Major Op.30' by Giuliani is one of the such difficult scores.

When we received his request, we felt it was too difficult to perform it without a professional instructor. Then professor Koyama said that 'I'll go and instruct them'. Mr. Abisheganaden was happy to hear it and agreed to this proposal. He watched the video tape and listened to the cassette tape we sent him for their practice, and he felt they needed much more time for the preparation. So he decided not to perform it at the recital in February 1997, and postponed the performance until their next regular recital. And he invited professor Koyama to their guitar camp.

Their program of the regular recital includes a variety of music like guitarron concerto 'March & Trepark' (carried on this magazine), Niibori Guitar Ladies' quartets repertory 'Lady D ~ Nocturne' by Chopin, violin concerto by Bach, Symphony No. 40 by Mozart and so on.

As professor Koyama instructed them, he felt their reaction was the almost same with Japanese ensembles. He was very glad to know that multinational guitar ensembles had already realized in Singapore, and he made sure that Niibori Method would spread all over the world. Mr. Edwin Thumboo, a dean of the university was interested in 'International Guitar Festival~1,000 players of guitar orchestra' held in 2,000 in Yokohama, and they talked about it very well during his stay.

NUS Guitar Ensemble calls us 'our Niibori Guitar Orchestra' and has a great admiration for us. We wish the success of their regular recital, and are looking forward to meeting some of them in Japan as a student of International Niibori Guitar Music Academy someday.

If you are interested in a membership of IGOA or have a question, please feel free to contact below.

For questions, advice & requests about Monthly Harmony,

Niibori Guitar Music Academy, Editorial Office

143-14 Fujisawa, Fujisawa-shi, Kanagawa-ken,
251-0052 Japan
Phone: +81-466-23-8338 / Fax: +81-466-23-9337

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