Joanne Wang
Euphonium / Christ Church Secondary School Concert Band

SYF 2013

Throwing back to Nov’12, it was when we felt the tension for SYF. The journey wasn’t easy as we had many difficulties to face such as a shortage of members.

At that point of time, we had 4 trombones (I was one of them) but we had no euphonium players. I was made to change to play the Euphonium as a result and it was really tough for me to change from a sliding instrument to a piston valve instrument, especially when I had no one to guide me except my conductor.

My school chose ‘Sarabande’ as our set piece which almost killed me with the 3/4 time signature. I was bad at counting and with a very exposed euphonium part at the beginning, I was lacking of confidence and it took me some time to be able to play as one with the band.

What boosted my confidence however was the advice from my brass instructor, Mr Ng, who told me, “In the piece, the lower brass section is like a two tier cake. The Tuba sets the base, the Trombone sets the accompaniment like the icing and the Euphonium plays the role of the decorations for the cake.”

After listening to that, I felt really confident and I knew I had to do work hard. Band is like a jigsaw puzzle; if any piece is weak, the puzzle cannot be completed nicely. From that point of time, I faced all my mistakes and did my best, in hopes that we as a band can get the Accomplishment award. We knew that we weren’t musically well trained but we want to seek progression each practice instead of perfection.

Throwing back to a few practices before the SYF’13, the stress level was very high. I broke down in my band a few times because I was afraid that I’ll bring the band standard down. But only after seeing that the band stood with me and that I’m not alone, I fought for the best in myself and we eventually achieved the Accomplishment award!

To all the musicians taking part is SYF this year, don’t be afraid to face your mistakes! In fact, mistakes are the best teachers on Earth. Even though practicing may not give you perfection, it’ll bring you progression! All the best!