Singapore International Music Competition

Lena Ching (Singapore)

Deputy Associate Dean,
School of  Music, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, University of the Arts Singapore

Lena Ching received her early music education in Singapore before going to the Royal College of Music in London for her graduate and postgraduate studies, majoring in both the piano and the harpsichord. She counts herself as part of the privileged beneficiary of her teachers, Victor Doggett, Yonty Solomon, Phyllis Sellick and Ruth Dyson.

Amongst Lena’s passions in life is teaching young people to cultivate a love and an understanding for music and life, as well as to see them excel in their talents and potential so as to contribute to the profession and to society. Since 1986, she has taught, developed and mentored numerous students and young performers from her private studio, from the LaSalle College of the Arts, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (the School of Music and the School of Young Talents), and also lectured for a period of time at the SIM-University of Buffalo.

Having been a prize-winning student herself (1st prize at the National Music Competition 1980, and Runner-Up at the Diners’ Club “Pianist of the Year” Competition 1986), her piano students have also won numerous prizes at local and overseas music competitions, and many have become successful musicians or professionals with a deep interest and love for music.

In the midst of a flourishing career, Lena’s continued search for excellence led her to pursue the Master of Arts degree in ‘Psychology for Musicians’ from the University of Sheffield (U.K.), in order to understand better the development and function of talent and abilities in musicians. Her area of research and specialization was on the impact/effect that music competitions have on gifted young musicians and high-ability learners. This is one of the many outcomes of her illustrious career in teaching and working with musically exceptional students, among whom are pianists Nellie Seng, Michael Cheung and Shaun Choo.

Her professional experiences have also included numerous opportunities to perform as a soloist, concerto soloist, chamber musician, and accompanist in concerts, auditions, examinations and competitions. Lena has often been invited to adjudicate in piano competitions, conduct pedagogical seminars, workshops and conferences, as well as piano masterclasses, in Singapore and Asian countries such as Malaysia, Indonesia, Taiwan, and China. Additionally, she has served as a committee member / panel member for the National Arts Council in 1996 and 1998, the Nanyang International Music Competition (2017, 2019), and the Nanyang International Piano Academy (2019, 2020).

Lena continues to be greatly inspired and enthused by aspiring young musicians as well as the work of her colleagues and contemporaries, as she delights in pursuing her passion for talent development. She served as the Head of Keyboard Studies at the School of Music of the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts from 2015-2019 and was appointed as Vice Dean of the School of Music from January 2020.