Students hit the right note in campus show

Ellen Chan

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More than 50 staff and students of City University of Hong Kong (CityU) took part in a staged performance, "Double Beat — Recitation and Singing", on 3 April at Wei Hing Theatre.

This was a joint function organised by Student Development Services and the Division of Language Studies from Community College of City University. Mr Joseph Chan Kai-nin, Director of Student Development Services and Ms Wanda Lau Woon-yee, Vice-Principal (Academic) also attended this function.

Dr Ruth Yee Wing-yu, Associate Director of Student Development Services, said the performance highlighted CityU's dedication to the promotion of the arts and culture. The performance was part of a larger workshop programme, "A Journey to the Arts of Language and Vocal Music". All of the performers had received vocal or recitation training from the workshop for one week. "This provided a valuable opportunity for participants to enhance their singing and recitation skills through intensive and systematic training," said Dr Yee. Ms Chuen Yuk-li, Lecturer at the Division of Language Studies, felt the workshop could heighten participants' understanding and appreciation of the arts.

The workshop was hosted by a renowned musician, Dr Chen Ti-wei, and Ms Zhang Yingmin, Associate Professor of Drama Art Graduate School at the Central Academy of Drama. They provided vocal and recitation training respectively for the participants.

Dr Chen said she was impressed by everyone's enthusiasm and passion at the workshop. "They attained a high standard with their singing, yet remained attentive and highly involved throughout the workshop. Their dedication has left a very positive impression on me," she said. During the workshop, Dr Chen shared with the participants her insights into singing.

Tina Wu Li-ying, a Year 1 student in the Master of Fine Arts in Media Design and Technology programme at the School of Creative Media, participated in the vocal training workshop. Although she had in the past received basic vocal training, she felt her skills were further improved by the workshop. "Dr Chen alerted me to the qualities of my own voice, so I now sing more skillfully, with the correct breathing technique and ability to connect phrases," said Tina.

The recitation training was supervised by Ms Zhang Yingmin, an actress with National Class II Performer qualification in China. She is also a member of the Beijing Society for Studies of Recitation. She pointed out that recitation is a form of performing the art of spoken languages, which requires serious study to master. "Recitation can improve the moral integrity and cultural quality of an individual as well as their communication skills and understanding of literary works," said Ms Zhang.

Wong Man-kit, a Year 2 student in the Associate of Arts in Applied Chinese Studies programme at Community College of CityU, received both singing and recitation training. He felt the workshop not only improved his Putonghua proficiency but also taught him elusive recitation skills. "Ms Zhang reminded us to read the selected works thoroughly before expressing the content, inflected with our feelings, in the recitation. Also, we should take note of the rhythm of our breathing and the consistency of our expression of feeling. The workshop taught me a lot and fuelled my interest in recitation," said Wong Man-kit.

"Double Beat — Recitation and Singing" was a successful show that offered the audience a wonderful evening of group and solo singing and recitation, performed by staff and students who had honed their skills in the workshop.

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