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Singaporean composer Ji Heng Lee began writing and arranging music for his peers in the Guitar ensemble (of which he was Music Director) and other student-run orchestras when he was studying in Raffles Institution (Singapore), where he read Music at the A-Level. Since graduating, he has continued to compose pieces for school juniors, including a Quintet conducted by Peter Veale as part of a collaboration with the Cologne-based Ensemble musikFabrik, as well as a chamber piece, heard that…, performed by a combined (Western and Chinese) string orchestra under Wei Shing Chan. In 2011, Ji Heng received the Singaporean Composer Award for his orchestral piece, Dark Light, in the Singapore International Competition for Chinese Orchestral Composition. His piece was premiered by the Singapore Chinese Orchestra under the direction of Tsung Yeh, and has also been recorded as part of an album featuring winning pieces from the competition.
Under a teaching scholarship awarded by the Singapore Ministry of Education, Ji Heng read the Music Tripos at University of Cambridge (Girton College), and graduated in June 2017. He took composition lessons with teachers including Richard Causton, Jeremy Thurlow and Cheryl Frances-Hoad, and also academic lessons with Martin Ennis, Tim Watts and Gareth Wilson, along with several others. He was involved in the College’s Chapel Choir and numerous recitals organised by the Music Society. In 2016, he was awarded the Sophia Turle Scholarship and Phyllis Tillyard Prize in recognition of his academic performance. During his time at Cambridge, Ji Heng wrote for a diverse range of ensembles. Past projects include a prize-winning Advent carol Maranâ thâ premiered by Ely Consort under Matthew Rudd, a Short Piece for Cambridge University Chinese Orchestra, a setting of a poem The Ocean Breathes for twelve solo voices and three suspended cymbals, as well as Three Movements for Organ dedicated to Lucy Morrell, who was Senior Organ Scholar (2015-2018) at Girton College.
Ji Heng recently graduated from Royal College of Music (RCM) London with a Master of Music (MMus) in Composition. He studied with Jonathan Cole under a Leverhulme Arts Scholarship, supported by donors Ms Jean Cater and Professor Gordon Marshall. During his time in London, his pe_ple_sc_ns was played in the Taylor-Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize Exhibition Concert at the National Portrait Gallery, along with pieces written by other RCM composition students in response to selected portraits. Collaborations with musicians associated with RCM also brought forth pieces such as repose I, EXCITATIONS, and the caged bird sings… Beyond college, his [ autofocus ] for string quartet was premiered by the Heath Quartet at Dartington International Summer School, and his aḍḍā আড্ডা won two performances in the Diaphonia Edizioni Minelli-Dacey Duo ‘Flute-like-Voice’ Call for Scores, and has been published by Diaphonia Edizioni. His ongoing projects include a series of solo instrumental pieces exploring the dramatic and theatrical possibilities of simple motivic ideas.
Presently, Ji Heng is teaching music in a junior college in Singapore, and hopes to keep up his composing career alongside his teaching job.
Updated October 2020
Performing my pieces
I would be sincerely delighted and greatly honoured if you are a musician (or ensemble) interested in performing any of my pieces! Most of my scores are either available for purchase or download on MusicaNeo and Sheet Music Plus, or for preview on issuu. Feel free to get in touch via e-mail to request for unpublished scores, or any details regarding a particular piece. Either way, it’d be nice if you could drop me a quick line indicating interest, perhaps letting me know the date and venue of your intended performance—I’d certainly love to come!
Commissions & requests for pieces
I am always happy to write new pieces for performers. In fact, I am all the more willing to collaborate with musician(s) themselves throughout my composition process, to create enjoyable pieces showcasing individual capabilities. If you like what you’ve heard in my portfolio and wish to have a piece written for yourself (or your ensemble), simply drop me an e-mail. I look forward to working with you!