over the years
Secondary Years [2000 – 2004]
Growing Up To Art, Band And Music
Schooled in St. Xavier's Institution (Georgetown, Penang), 2000 was the year where I began to be involved in a marching band. I also started to play 'street football' extensively. Arts and Mathematics were my best academic subjects while my other interests include ping pong, chess, strategy card games and Buddhism. One could always say I was competitive back then in all those, or at least leaving a mark, where my performance caught people by surprise.
In 2001, my participation in a concert band performance held at a concert hall had also impacted my liking for orchestral music. We championed the national day marching band competition at state levels in that same year. However, academically, it was the worst performance in my entire student's experience. I wasn't living with my mother that year because my parents had just seperated the year before; I was staying with my dad. So, I was glad I did not have to 'face the music' for my poor academics. But I always remembered 2001 as my happiest year in the whole of my secondary years.
In 2002, my friend brought his guitar to school. 'Glen Campbell's 'Rhinestone Cowboy' was the song he sang with it. I was immediately inspired to sing and play the guitar. At the end of that year, after I did reasonably well for my major examinations, my mother bought me a guitar.
In 2003, this was the year I picked up a lot of Chinese pop songs. Getting to know friends from Chinese schools, I learned to speak in Mandarin. Despite still being very shy, I found a few new girl friends. I think they were the reason I developed my keenest for Mandopop.
In 2004, at the age of 17, I was going through the tightest daily routines ever in my life, facing our national schooling examination, tuitions were almost everyday. Yet, assuming the roles of the clarinet section leader, the band's secretary and also the band conductor, responsibilities were piling up; not to mention the assignments I had in taking up an extra (optional) subject, Art, for that year's examination. Hence academically, I narrowly secured myself from being the poorest in class. But at least, I was still in a top class of a Science stream –a safe fact for my asian mom to share.
Despite having a hectic schedule, I was still messing around with guitar playing and singalong songs in between. And very soon I was eager to sing and perform on stage. That year end after the examinations, I did a couple of singing performances in school, not realising how passionate I would turn into a few years down the road.