When concours and politics unite

Truth be told, I'd have liked an impartial concours like that of 2006.
From what I've heard, judging in the Choir Concours was an inside story, involving bribery and political sentiments, and probably racial issues : or what else could've caused the officers themselves to tell us not to snap, or use percussion, or let the choir sing ; or who would have tampered with the microphones to make it all sound wrong ?

The worst part is, KL and Perak get the brunt of it.

My friends have seen the Selangor team on TV2 almost every day before the news programme and in my honest opinion, they suck. No offence. They, like most of the other winning teams, were technically perfect but lacked expression. And if this were to go to Internationals, we'd be nowhere. Full stop. The similarity between all winning teams was that they all reached high notes. Harmony makes a whopping 30%, dynamics get to 20%, first impression is 10%... and to the truest of music enthusiasts, they have got their schemes all wrong.

This is my suggested scheme for the next Choir Concours :

Harmony 20%
Dynamics 15%
Expression 30%
First Impression 5%
Conducting 10%
X-Factor 10%

and this gives it a total of 100%, like in the previous schemes. Only this time, I added the X-Factor : what would make this choir team different from all the rest ? What would give it the edge to win ? There're a whole lotta teams out there who have their own edge in performing. And music can't be felt if there were no expression - what's the point of harmony and dynamics if we see a bunch of guys and gals just standing there, not feeling or immersing themselves into the music they make ?

Little did the Ministry of Education know they were selecting unknown judges (inferior to the standards of last year, and I reckon that, unlike 2006, they weren't very musically educated), and little did they know they broke a young composer's heart. I write this so that one day, they may know what has happened, and this'll never happen again.

I feel they are just blindly checking the other teams out simply because we tried to stun the hearts of the judges, but that was not what they were looking for. I shudder to hear Selangor's performance again. Even Sabah and Perak were better, to be honest. And of all teams, Perlis had the merit award, yuck ! They were as bad as Terengganu !

Judges, get a life. For national competitions, get good ones (like Istana Budaya critics or lecturers from ICOM or Berklee College of Music), or don't hold the concours at all...... for the sake of our future contestants. As a true music enthusiast, I don't want a tainted competition. Music should be free from any hurtful sentiments towards others. If I judge, I'd judge neutrally. Think why YourSpins selected me to judge quite a few competitions already !

After all, they do not know who composed the scores.

No holding back for money, even if they would kill me.


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