Montfort Military Band: Perfecting in Synergy

Caius Thue Ming Han

Clarinetist
Concert Master
Montfort Secondary School Military Band

My band recently held its annual Passing Out Parade. As I took a trip down memory lane, I broke down in tears. I have come to realise how much these four years really meant to me.

I joined the band unwillingly when I was in Secondary 1 as I thought that I did not have a talent in music. I even had difficulties playing a simple phrase on a recorder when I was younger.

It was daunting at first. While most of my peers were already comfortable with their instruments after the first few weeks, I was the only one who got thumb sore from holding the clarinet. This spurred me on to practice harder and that was when I found joy in playing my instrument. I took 3 weeks to learn the Bb Scale, and when I first played it, I couldn’t help but smile with glee. That sense of accomplishment was simply addictive and soon enough, I was practising 2 hours a day.

My first concert was at “In-Sync”, the band’s annual concert. It was my first experience performing to such a large group of people. That night was magical; people were cheering as the band sounded marvellous. It was at that moment where I realised I was part of a big family.

Playing with the band often transports me to a different reality. I seem to feel what I do not feel, understand what I do not understand and have powers which I cannot have.

This year’s SYF journey has been tough, but rewarding. Our choice piece, Magellan’s Voyage to Unknown Continent, was relatively difficult, and there were times where we wanted to give up. But I’m glad we didn’t. This challenging voyage has made us better musicians and closer brothers. As a band, we reached different milestones together and continually grew to become better and better. We also learnt immensely from others. Through this entire process, we remained disciplined, humble and committed.

Needless to say, the actual performance during SYF was a proud and magical moment. I knew we gave our best.

I’m glad that we’ve got this achievement as a band and I’m very grateful to my batch mates (my brothers), instructors and teachers for this fruitful journey.

Indeed, we’ll always be striving for perfection, and we’ll always do it together, in synergy. I will forever remember the band motto: “Perfecting In Synergy”.

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