NUS Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music raises over S$1.3m to empower students, advance musical excellence and engage the community

Proceeds from the YST 20th Anniversary Fundraising Campaign will support undergraduate bursaries as well as initiatives promoting musical excellence and health and well-being

The National University of Singapore (NUS) Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music (YST) has raised over S$1.3m through its 20th Anniversary Fundraising Campaign, with proceeds to be channelled towards initiatives that will enhance student support and expand its influence as Asia’s leading conservatory.

The news was announced at the YST 20th Anniversary Fundraising Gala Dinner held last night at Fullerton Bay Hotel with close to 300 donors, friends and guests of YST in attendance. Attendees included Guest-of-Honour Mr Hsieh Fu Hua, Chairman of the NUS Board of Trustees; Professor Tan Eng Chye, NUS President; Ms Chong Siak Ching, Chair of the YST Governing Board, and Professor Peter Tornquist, Dean of YST.

The dinner featured performances by YST Associate Professor in Piano, Ning An, with the YST Orchestral Institute conducted by Dr Lien Boon Hua, as well as alumni such as the well-known instrumental band Lorong Boys and string quartet Bards of Neverland.

Addressing guests at the dinner, Ms Chong said, “Over the past 20 years, YST has grown not only as a school but also as an artistic hub, community connector, and the international face of Singapore’s higher music education. We are deeply grateful to our benefactors who have supported us through the years, and to all who have contributed towards our anniversary fundraising campaign, which will boost our efforts to impact even more lives through music.”

The funds will go towards bursaries for YST undergraduate students, support research and community outreach efforts by YST’s Centre for Music and Health (CMH), expand the triennial Singapore International Violin Competition, and support the Conservatory in its wider artistic, educational and community-facing offerings.

Professor Tornquist said, “These initiatives are part of our larger mission to reimagine what a 21st-century conservatory can contribute to the world. Tonight’s performances are just some examples of the Conservatory’s rich talent and thrilling creativity. As we move boldly forward, we will continue to create musical resonances, nurture artistic excellence, engage the community, spearhead innovation, and continually rise to the challenge of educating the musical leaders of tomorrow.”

The Gala Dinner was part of YST’s string of anniversary celebration events, which included the launch of the CMH, a Gala Concert in April, as well as the Conservatory’s ongoing concert season.

The celebrations will conclude in October with the premiere of the Southeast Asian Golden Age Symphony, a brand-new commission featuring seven young composers from across Southeast Asia representing the region’s cultural vibrancy and bright musical voices. 

To mark its 20 years, YST also launched its alumni association which will connect its body of over 800 graduates, and will establish a memorial bursary in honour of Conservatory faculty, staff and students who have passed on.

Please visit ystmusic.nus.edu.sg for more information.