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Music Elective Programme (MEP)

Programme Information

The Music Elective Programme at TJC is designed to nurture each student in their musical inclinations while developing them to be critical and creative thinkers, performers and composers of music. Integrated Programme students taking MEP will explore music in relation to art, literature, politics, religion and theatre. A unique focus is the student’s exposure to music repertoire beyond the Western traditions into the domain of World Music, such that this musical sensitivity and multi-cultural awareness allows for the appreciation, analysis and critique of a diverse spectrum of works.

Our syllabus approaches the study of Music through Music Studies and Music Making. TJC’s curriculum is designed for students to develop breadth and depth in the various skills required for each component. Students get to learn under tutors specialising in the different components of the paper, namely Asian Music, Western Music, Composition (Stylistic imitation and Free composition), and will also have lecture recitals and personal consultations for their performing component. 

Students will acquire other essential 21st Century music skills in music technology, such as music notation software and sound recording, in the process of creating their individual composition portfolios. Each student will become a musician in the truest sense of the word – as an analyst, composer, performer, critic, and researcher.

Authentic platforms are provided to develop our students’ musicianship, provide opportunities for them to be practitioners and advocates of the arts, and expose them to tertiary opportunities and career options from industry professionals.



The Music Elective Programme at TJC specifically carves out platforms for our students to polish themselves as musicians and performers. As per tradition, the twelfth edition of the annual TJC MEP showcase featured current students and alumni coming together for an evening of music making and performance. Held at the Esplanade Recital Studio, the concert featured culminating performances from our JC2 students, while students from the other levels and alumni collaborated to present a range of eclectic performances. These included the world premieres of Escape for Wind Quintet, written by Marcus Ong (MEP class of 2018), as well as that of Kitchen Nightmares, an original theatrical piece conceptualised and conceived by our JC1 MEP students. The evening marked the successes of TJC MEP past and present, while looking forward to future musical achievements.

Vivace Piano Ensemble Competition 2019

The JC1 MEP cohort took part in the tenth instalment of Vivace, an inter-school piano ensemble competition organised by National Junior College. Of the five piano duos presented, two won the Silver award while one emerged with a Gold with Commendation award, placing among the top 6 duos from across the country. In preparation for the competition, the duos were coached by TJC MEP alumnus and graduate of the Royal College of Music, Bertram Wee. Through this experience, the participants gained a newfound appreciation for contemporary piano duet repertoire, while expanding their range of performing skills, particularly in a collaborative setting.

Taiwan Cultural Immersion Trip 2019

One of the key highlights of our Music Elective Programme is the biennial overseas immersion trip for our students to learn about the impacts of music in other parts of the world. Our IP3-JC2 MEP students visited Taiwan in the first week of the June holidays. Apart from taking in the sights and sounds of Taipei, they broadened their musical horizons through attending a series of workshops at the Taipei National University of the Arts. These focused on various aspects of musical study - traditional Taiwanese musical genres (Nanguan and Beiguan), contemporary music performance, and creative composition. This was complemented by a visit to National Taiwan College of Performing Arts, where they observed the local students in action during rehearsals for Peking Opera and Hakka Opera. The students gained a fresh cultural perspective and a newfound appreciation for the arts beyond a local context.


East Zone Music Competition

The East Zone Music Competition is a biennial music competition organised by the East Zone Centre of Excellence for Creative Arts - Music Satellite and it is open to all secondary schools in the East. The competition includes 4 categories: Solo Classical Piano, Instrumental Ensemble, Solo Pop Voice, and Pop/Rock Band, and aims to develop musically talented students and enhance their learning.

2016: Jolie Loh (1B/16) and Phoon Pei Zhen (3D/16) were placed second in the Solo Piano and Solo Violin categories.
2018: Jenell Lim (1A/18) was placed second in the Solo Piano category

2018 A Level MEP Results

The MEP Class of 2018 did the college proud by achieving 60% Distinctions and 100% A/B grades. We are very proud of our students' achievements

Music Elective Scholarship

Please click here for more information on the Music Elective Scholarship.

Distinguished Alumni


2019 NAC Young Artist Award – Emily Koh (Graduated 2004), Assistant Professor of Composition at the University of Georgia in Athens (UGA) in Georgia, USA.

Emily Koh (Age, 33) – Composer Emily Koh (b. 1986) is a composer of contemporary classical music. Her music is characterised by inventive explorations of the smallest details of sound. She received a Ph.D. in Music Composition and Theory from Brandeis University, Waltham in Massachusetts, USA (2017). She has received multiple awards, including the Asian Composers League Yoshiro Irino Memorial Prize (Hong Kong, 2013). She has also been commissioned by the Singapore Symphony Orchestra (2015) and the Barlow Endowment General Commission (USA, 2012); and received the Paul Abisheganaden Grant for Artistic Excellence (2012). Today, Emily is Assistant Professor of Composition at the University of Georgia (UGA) in Athens in Georgia, USA, and performs as a double bassist in the Atlanta contemporary music scene. Although she is based in Atlanta in Georgia, USA, she gives workshops at various schools every time she is back in Singapore.


Video of Emily Koh filmed in TJC:


2014 NAC Young Artist Award – Chen Zhangyi (Graduated 2002), Assistant Professor of Composition, Conductor of New Music Ensemble, Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music

Mr Chen Zhangyi is a composer whose works have been performed by world-renowned orchestras including the London Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra. His music composing versatility is evident from his acclaimed works across genres in opera, wind ensembles, chamber and choral music. He plays the role of mentor and educator through workshops and masterclasses he conducts at the School of the Arts (2010-2012) and Temasek Junior College (2010-12). He also tutored students at the Peabody Conservatory (2009-2013) and taught music theory and appreciation courses at the Baltimore City Community College (2013).

Selected Awards and Achievements
  • Winner, Orchestral Composition Competition, Peabody Conservatory (2013)
  • Recipient, Trailblazer Foundation Grants, Singapore (2011- 2013)
  • Winner, Abbey Road Studios 80th Anniversary Anthem Competition, London (2011)
  • Winner, Asian Composers’ League Competition, Taiwan (2011)
  • Winner, Singapore Compose! 2010 Competition, Philharmonic Winds (2010)



2015 NAC Young Artist Award – Diana Soh Li Ling (Graduated 2002)

Diana Soh’s body of work demonstrates creativity and adventure in her artistic pursuits. A doctorate holder of Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique (IRCAM), Soh spent 2 years as Composer-in-residence at the National Center for Musical Creation (La Muse en Circuit) and the Conservatoire D'ivry Sur Seine, France. Soh has received commissions from, and has been presented by, major international festivals, radio broadcasts, and commissioning organisations such as the Singapore Youth Choir.

Selected Awards and Achievements
  • SACEM (France) Bourses Cursus 2 (2012)
  • Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities & Colleges (2011)
  • Nominee, Finalist for Gaudeamus Prize in Composition (2011)
  • Hedy King Robinson Award (ABRSM)

Rei Ong (Graduated 2018) – NTU Renaissance Engineering
MEP subject award (2013 – 2014, 2016 – 2018)
Top IP Student (2016)
Recipient of NTU Renaissance Engineering Scholarship 2019

“I enjoyed how MEP was a more engaging subject, with practical parts like performing and composing, where there are no limitations on what we can play or create, providing me with limitless scope to experiment with anything that I was interested in. I also got to travel to Shanghai and Suzhou with my friends, where we learnt from renowned practitioners on Chinese traditional music and soaked in the culture of the places we visited.”


Alastair Simon Chetty (Graduated 2010) – Senior Executive (International Legal), Ministry of Law, Singapore

NUS Faculty of Law Dean’s List 2015/2016
NUS Law Overseas Internship Stipend 2016/2017 – Internship with UN Office of Legal Affairs (Codification Division) in New York

Alastair Simon Chetty is the first undergraduate student from an Asian law school to be named a winner of the 2018 Nappert Prize in International Arbitration. Established in 2014 by McGill University and endowed by arbitrator Sophie Nappert, the biennial essay competition is open to all junior scholars, junior practitioners and law students from around the world.

Alastair’s paper, “Embracing Practical Solutions in Dealing with the Distinct Shades of Abuse of Process in Investment Arbitration”, was selected from more than 80 entries to be awarded Second Place by a distinguished panel of jurors. The panel comprised Julie Bédard (Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP), Professor Lawrence Boo (National University of Singapore & Bond University), Professor Olivier Caprasse (Universities of Liège & Brussels), Professor Kun Fan (McGill University), José Feris (Squire Patton Boggs), Alexander Fessas (International Chamber of Commerce Court), Meg Kinnear (International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes), and Eduardo Zuleta Jaramillo (Zuleta Abogados Asociados).