GTF Summer School: Music Masterclasses


The George Town Festival Summer School welcomes members of the public of all ages and levels of artistic experience to Hikayat’s series of music masterclasses – created and taught by guest artists who are leaders in their fields. This year’s Summer School focuses on jazz – the singer and singing, jazz piano for everyone and the vibe between drums and bass. Discover your creative passion, learn a new skill or develop your knowledge, guided by our expert tutors and in the company of your peers.

The FUNdanMENTAL Singing


15 July 2023 (Saturday) | 1.00pm - 2.30pm

Masterclass | Singing

Singing is both rewarding and challenging, a journey and not a destination. We often feel defeated and struggle with singing’s complexities. We tend to forget the fun, joy, passion and creativity that drew us to singing in the first place. Singing should not only be restricted to the technical side, but it should also encompass the many different aspects that make up our complete singing experience, such as expressing feelings, managing nervousness, vocal fitness and more. This masterclass covers the following: a general understanding of our singing instrument; vocal health and maintenance; song selection and interpretation. Stay encouraged and inspired by the beautiful and mysterious bond that life and singing share.


With over two decades of professional experience, WinnieHO is a prolific award-winning singer, producer, music educator and arranger in the audiophile and Chinese jazz scene. She was the winner of the Astro Talent Quest and International Chinese Singing Competition, organised by Hong Kong TVB (2000) and the Best Vocal Performance Artist PWH Music Award (2018). Her recording portfolio spans eight concept albums, including 2v1g Vol. 1 (2008) and The Jazzy Sounds of Teresa Teng (2012). She has released two self-produced solo albums: Chapter 01. Finally and Chapter 02. He Yun Ni. Winnie’s other primary role is as a lead vocalist with The Shang Sisters, for whom she is responsible for repertoire curation, vocal arrangement and production.

Jazz for Classical Pianists and Musicians

Tay Cher Siang

15 July 2023 (Saturday) | 3.00pm - 4.30pm

Masterclass | Jazz piano

Many feel that people who improvise or play jazz are special. If they are special, it is because they have spent their time wisely learning the tools of improvisation. A few of the tools are: scales, chords, patterns, licks, songs (standards and originals), ear training, listening to recordings of jazz greats and any other thing which they feel will contribute to the growth of a well-rounded musician. In this masterclass, we look at how to learn and practise musical tools that open up the doorway to jazz and improvisation.


Tay Cher Siang is one of Southeast Asia’s finest jazz pianists, composers, arrangers and producers, and currently lives in Kuala Lumpur. With an early training in classical music, he took up jazz in his teens and began a musical odyssey as a jazz pianist. He studied with the well-known teachers James Miltenberger and Paul Scea in the United States, before returning to Malaysia to immerse himself in jazz education at a number of universities, while also teaching at his private studio and giving masterclasses and jazz clinics. As a pianist and composer, Cher Siang has toured extensively, performing in Asia, the Middle East, Europe and North America with both the multinational band Unit Asia, and with his own band WVC Jazz – one of Southeast Asia’s leading contemporary jazz ensembles.

All about the Singer and the Song

Junji Delfino

16 July 2023 (Sunday) | 1.00pm - 2.30pm

Masterclass | Jazz vocals

This masterclass is for singers and teachers wanting to delve deeper into what it takes to be a jazz singer. Get to understand more about the voice, and how to manage microphone technique, phrasing, style and improvisation. The focus is also on what it means to be a singer, learning to create a repertoire and how to direct, interact and groove with an instrumental ensemble. An ideal opportunity for those who want to explore the intimate relationship between the singer and the song with a true professional.


Junji Delfino is a name deeply etched in Malaysian jazz and performing arts circles. Born into a family whose name is synonymous with music in the Philippines, she has become a vocalist of critical and popular renown, developing a sound and a style all her own. A gifted songwriter, lyricist and composer, Junji has released two albums to great popular acclaim: Here I Am (2010) and It’s Christmas Time Again (with David Gomes, 2014). She has appeared at several jazz festivals, including the first edition of KL International Jazz Festival in 2012, with performances in Southeast Asia and the United States. While she is primarily known in the music circuit as a jazz vocalist, Junji’s name has also appeared in credits for a number of theatre, television and film productions, including the worldwide runaway hit Crazy Rich Asians. There couldn’t have been a more organic transition from singer to thespian. After all, for Junji singing is storytelling set to music and she has told a few thousand stories by now.

We Ain’t Swingers

Adriel Wong and AJ Popshuvit

16 July 2023 (Sunday) | 3.00pm - 4.30pm

Masterclass | Drums and bass

In jazz, the bass and drums collaborate in a similar way. The drums provide a rhythmic pulse in the music, while the bass provides a harmonic foundation. In jazz improvisation, both the bass and drums play an important role. As part of the rhythm section, they usually act as the cornerstone for how a tune is performed and progresses. Harmonic and rhythmic tensions and resolutions are also created as a result of their collaboration. This masterclass explores the possibilities of this unique musical relationship and engages with a key question: Is everything swingable? Come and find out as Adriel Wong and AJ Popshuvit break the standards.


Adriel Wong graduated in 2018 with a Bachelor of Music from Universiti Sains Malaysia. Being an alumnus of the Malaysian Philharmonic Youth Orchestra, he has received exposure to both classical and contemporary orchestral music. He actively pursues a full-time music career by engaging in projects with musicians locally and internationally, mostly as a jazz drummer. He is currently the drummer for WVC Jazz, and has been a sideman for notable musicians including Tay Cher Siang, Michael Veerapan, Julian Chan, Gabrielle Stravelli, Patrick O’Leary, Chi-Pin Hsieh, Kai-Ya Chang and Yuki Arimasa.

AJ Popshuvit is a founder-member and bassist of WVC Jazz, one of Southeast Asia’s leading contemporary jazz bands, with whom he has toured extensively in the region. With WVC he has played on seven albums of original music, and won three awards at the prestigious BOH Cameronian Arts Awards in 2016 and a further two awards in 2020. He also appeared with the band in the film Crazy Rich Asians.

*Pre-registration is required.


15 & 16 July 2023


1.00pm & 3.00pm



Free Admission

Pre-registration is required.

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