Serena Tan began violin lessons with the Raffles Girls Primary School (Singapore) music program, under Vivien Goh, daughter of the late Goh Soon Tioe – Singapore’s pioneer concert violinist and impresario.
1983 – awarded top scorer with distinction in her Grade 8 ABRSM exam in Singapore, which qualified her for a music scholarship to study at the Royal School of Music, London.
Awarded the Singapore Symphony Orchestra Young Talent scholarship to study under SSO musicians : American violinist Charlotte Poston, Hungarian violist George Mann and Chinese violinist Zhang Zhen Shan.
started ensemble playing with the Goh Soon Tioe String Orchestra at age 10.
Selected for the Singapore Youth Orchestra and National Schools Orchestra at age 12. With the SYO, she performed extensively in local and international festivals and concert tours, namely Lancashire and London in UK and the International Festival of Youth orchestras and the Performing Arts in Rome.
Auditioned and represented Singapore at the 5th ASEAN Music Workshop in Bangkok.
While still a student, she was also invited to play in the orchestra for Richard Clayderman’s Singapore tour, the Singapore Broadcasting Orchestra for the 1986 ASEAN Song Festival, the Opera Orchestra for a production of Strauss’s Die Fledermaus, the musical “The King and I” and numerous other stage productions. Active performer in small ensembles for private events, weddings, hotels, musical showcases, and corporate functions.
As a chamber musician, she was part of an SYO string quartet which won 1st Prize in the 4th National Music Competition in Singapore, playing Dvorak String Quartet No. 12 “The American”, winning the opportunity to record with a feature program of prize winners on Singapore TV.
At university, performed with the National University of Singapore Symphony Orchestra.
She played in several overseas orchestras : Performed with the Palm Beach Community Orchestra in Florida USA, the Shaker Heights Symphony Orchestra in Cleveland USA, the Bois-Guillaume Ensemble in France and as 1st violin in the 20th anniversary celebrations in Berlin with the Gedas World Orchestra (subsidiary of Volkswagen). Currently, Serena plays violin with the Zelman Memorial Symphony Orchestra in Melbourne, Australia.
As a violin teacher for the last 30 years, Serena has imbued her students with not only the technicalities of violin playing and study, but also musicianship and musical interpretation. Under her tutelage and encouragement, some of her students have scored distinctions in ABRSM exams.
Serena’s students (from young children to adults) who have learnt for just a year could start playing with the ensemble and chamber groups. Here are some videos of their performance :
- Serena created these videos to help beginners