May 8, 2021

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Do you have a violin, you will travel

Leung Seung Quinn knew from a young age that music was her first love and it would be her future too.

Determined to fulfill her dream, she bravely turned to her brother’s teacher to arrange her piano lessons when she was only four years old.

The prodigy later won a scholarship to study violin at the Shetham School of Music in the United Kingdom.

As a member of his Symphony Orchestra, Leung performed at venues such as Windsor Castle, the Royal Festival Hall, Cadogan Hall, the Isle of Man, and Bridgewater Hall.

It has also participated in international festivals such as the Salzburg Music Festival and Haus Marteau Meisterkurs.

As a soloist, Leong won the Gold Award in Euroasia Strings, the 1st Prize and Senior Patron Award in the 10th Malaysian Youth Music Festival (solo performance by young artists) in 2016.

Currently, Leung works as the second principal violinist for the Kuala Lumpur Strings Group and occasionally plays the Selangor Symphony Orchestra, the Ensemble Virama and the National Symphony Orchestra.

Looking back, the 28-year-old Leung made the right choice to approach his piano teacher. Otherwise, you might not have achieved her dream career as a musician.

What attracted you to the violin?

I was lucky to learn from a young age that I would be a musician.

It was actually through my piano teacher recommendation that I started playing the violin, as I noticed my intense interest in music. Thankfully, it worked because I fell in love with the machine two years later, and I haven’t stopped since.

How old were you when you started playing the violin?

I was just shy of my 9th birthday when I started violin lessons. My teachers in Malaysia were very encouraging and suggested to my father that I audition for Sheetham School of Music, a high school specializing in music in Manchester, UK.

I entered with a scholarship when I was 11 years old.

Later I finished my BA in Music at the Royal Northern College of Music. I am very grateful for the amount of support I have received from so many people and still in contact with many of my teachers.

My family played a big role in helping me achieve my ambition. I wasn’t musicians, it was a pleasant surprise to them when I suddenly started planning my own role in music, but I am grateful for their unwavering confidence in my choices from such a young age.

What are the most memorable moments in your life?

One of my fondest memories is my first summer violin course in Italy when I was 14 years old. He was in a small deserted castle in Tuscany and approximately twelve people stayed there over the course of a week.

Days were spent lessons and practice in vacant rooms, and every evening packed with concerts for enthusiastic locals.

Sure, it has been one of the most inspiring weeks making music I’ve experienced, listening to what my friends have been working on and exchanging ideas with each other on practice and interpretation techniques. I have attended many other excellent summer festivals since then, but this particular summer has a special place in my heart as the first time I have ever attended.

What is your goal?

I would like to explore more of the repertoire, as I feel there is still a lot to learn. I’ve really enjoyed playing with other musicians lately and would love to have more concerts in the chamber and be involved in bigger orchestral projects in the future.