Jennifer Tham | Conductor
Jennifer is curious about the sight of sound and has a multi-modal listening practice as a conductor and composer. Her work is shaped by a love of words, phenomenology, mapping, spatial practices, conceptual art, contemporary music and choral theatre. With the SYC Ensemble Singers (Singapore)—a mixed chamber choir she has directed since 1986—she works at the intersection of the literary, musical and visual cultures, employing staging, movement and lighting design to reify the patterns of new music on stage. For her role in shaping Singapore’s cultural landscape, she was awarded the Cultural Medallion, the nation’s highest arts accolade, by the President, Republic of Singapore.
Jennifer taught choral conducting and pedagogy at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, and teaches short courses and workshops on repertoire, conducting, and rehearsal technique, equipping young conductors around the world with a toolbox of musicianship games for learning and performing contemporary music. She has chaired and spoken on panels on repertoire and programming at conferences and symposia in Argentina, Denmark, Estonia and Sweden, and was Principal Lecturer at the Lithuanian Conductors Summer Academy hosted by the Lithuanian Choral Union and the Ministry of Culture.
Under the auspices of the Young Musicians’ Society, Jennifer was Artistic Director of the Asia South Pacific Symposium on Choral Music (2001) and its offshoots, the First Aid for Choirs clinics (2002-2017) and Kodaly Seminar Asia series (2009-2016), the latter in partnership with the Kodály Institute of the Liszt Academy of Music (Budapest, Hungary). For the International Federation for Choral Music, Jennifer co-coordinates the Asia Pacific Working Committee and the Asia Pacific Youth Choir. She represents Singapore on the World Choir Council, and has been on jury at the World Choir Games and other festivals in Asia, Europe and America since 2003.