Today is the third day of the Year of the Dog. I have started writing my thoughts about AYO since yesterday. Happened to have some time during the Chinese New Year holidays. Here I am, listening to the Franz Schubert: String Quartet No. 13 in A minor (the Rosamunde Quartet), D. 804, Op. 29, at this youtube link:
It is a fitting piece, to bring my thoughts back to 1992, long long ago. It was the same piece that I had played before, long long ago, when I was in AYO in 1992, with violinist Obata Yuka, violist Hsiao Po-Ling and cellist Ogata Yuko. We practised in a small room in the United World College, at Dover Road in Singapore, only the first movement. We performed in the Hong Kong Cultural Centre stage in the lobby area when we subsequently went to Hong Kong for AYO performances.
That year 1992, I was 17 years old, still in the first year in junior college in Singapore. After having heard AYO performed in Singapore in 1990 and 1991, I was so impressed by AYO and wanted very much to be a part of it too. With many encouragements from my teacher and mentor, I took the plunge and went for the audition. The requirements were (and are still) to prepare two pieces, one fast and one slow, also scales and arpeggios. I remembered the two pieces that I prepared were Mendelssohn's violin concerto second movement, and Praeludium and Allegro.