A cappella music saw a revival in popularity in the 2000’s through TV shows and musical films such as ‘Glee’ and ‘Pitch Perfect’, featuring school and collegiate a capella groups performing music in groups or solo singing without the use of musical instruments.
While much of the music in popular culture covers radio-friendly songs or much-loved classics, a capella music was originally the style of choice for religious music such as church music, Gregorian chants and secular voice music from the Renaissance – for which the University of Cambridge’s Choir of Gonville and Caius College is known.
In a first for the Jeffrey Cheah Foundation (JCF), the Choir of Gonville and Caius College’s ‘Choral Serenade to Music’ was performed at a charity concert in Sunway City. Led by Dr Geoffrey Webber, director of the Gonville and Caius College Choir, the audience of 1,100 guests was taken on a musical journey through the centuries.
The concert also featured the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra in the second half of the concert.
The Choir of Gonville & Caius College is one of the UK’s leading collegiate choirs, performing a wide range of sacred and secular choral music spanning the centuries. The Choir travels extensively abroad, and has performed in connection with other professional ensembles such as Opera Northern Ireland, the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra of San Francisco, and the Orchestre National Bordeaux Aquitaine.
In a special tribute to Malaysia’s musical heritage, the choir also performed an arrangement of Malaysian folk songs, handpicked and deftly accompanied on the piano by YAM Tunku Zain Al- ‘Abidin ibni Tuanku Muhriz, Trustee of the JCF.
JCF and University of Cambridge’s relationship began through the initiation of academic ties in 2014. This resulted in the establishment of a fund for two Jeffrey Cheah Professorial Fellows, who are Fellows of Gonville and Caius College, in perpetuity.
As part of the JCF’s commitment to the sustainable well-being of communities, Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Dr Jeffrey Cheah AO, Founding Trustee of the Jeffrey Cheah Foundation presented a cheque of RM400,000, representing the proceeds of the evening, to the President of the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) Tan Sri Dato’ Dr Abu Bakar Suleiman.