Malaysia Travel Guide



KUCHING, Friday – Michael Veerapen, an acclaimed Malaysian Jazz musician, will be performing with the Michael Simon’s Asian Connection at the Borneo Jazz Festival on May 12 to 13, at ParkCity Everly in Miri.

Veerapen is well-known in the Malaysian Jazz scene since his time in funk-fusion band Asia Beat with Lewis Pragasam and has established his place as a Jazz pianist, producer, record studio head and mentor, now with a new title to his name: Student.

Despite his 60 years of age and incredible achievements in the Malaysian Jazz arena, Veerapen intends to pursue his master’s degree in Music at Universiti Sains Malaysia with a research paper focusing on local Jazz composers such as Alfonso Soliano, Tan Sri P. Ramlee and Jimmy Boyle.

Veerapen will also be leading one of the Borneo Jazz Festival’s Outreach Programmes, where the Festival performers provide tutorials and talks with young aspiring musicians. His slot entitled “I Want To Break Free! The art of improvising at the keyboards” takes place on Saturday, May 13 at 9.30 am to 11.00 am.

“On the one hand, there is a group that lacks basic knowledge such as reading notes. On the other is a group with a lot of knowledge but little understanding of what’s happening on the ground,” Veerapan said during an interview with The Star Newspaper earlier this year.

Veerapen’s message of lifelong learning is inspirational in its own right, made more so by his goal in bridging the gap between passionate self-taught musicians and musical scholars, starting with himself.

Bands from Japan, South Africa, Italy, USA, Netherlands, Canada, Taiwan and countries from around the world will be performing at the Festival.

The Festival will be expanding its musical outreach programme, where aspiring musicians can learn the basics of Jazz Keyboard from professional musicians, by introducing additional classes for percussions.

The Festival includes night performances with sitting and dancing areas and a wide lawn for night picnics surrounded by arts, crafts and food stalls.

Pre-sale festival tickets are available now and more information can be found at

Borneo Jazz is organised by Sarawak Tourism, endorsed by Tourism Malaysia and is jointly supported by the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Sarawak and partnering with Malaysia Airlines as the presenting sponsor.       

MICHAEL SIMON - PubPhoto - Michael Veerapen

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Tourism Malaysia

MUGENJUKU Troupe Tour: Traditional Sounds of Shamisen

October 30, 2011 during 7:35 pm

A shamisen, also famous as sangen, is a three-stringed Japanese low-pitched instrument that is customarily played with a plectrum called a bachi. The instrument is assembled identical to that of a guitar or banjo, with customarily a neck somewhat slimmer than that of a guitar or banjo. The neck of a shamisen is customarily built in such a approach that it can be divided into 3 or 4 pieces that fit and close together, customarily for palliate of storage. The pegs that are used to breeze a strings were traditionally done from ivory, yet recently these pegs have been constructed regulating other materials such as several kinds of timber and plastic. The 3 strings are done of nylon and are stretched opposite a physique and lifted from it by regulating a bridge.

Mugenjuku Troupe Tour : Traditional Sounds of Shamisen

The shamisen can be played solo or with other shamisen, in an garb with other Japanese instruments or with singing and even as an accompaniment to drama. For those who suffer a enterprising and enterprising sounds of shamisen, there will be a opening by a Mugenjuku Troupe. They have been specifically invited by The Japan Foundation, Kuala Lumpur and will be behaving a array of performances in Penang, Kuala Lumpur and Kuala Terengganu from 31st Oct to 2nd Nov 2011. Performance schedules are as below:

Date Time : 31 Oct 2011, 8.30 pm
Venue : Dewan Budaya, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM)

Kuala Lumpur
Date Time : 1 Nov 2011, 8.30 pm
Venue : Orchestra Hall, Akademi Seni Budaya Dan Warisan Kebangsaan (ASWARA)

Kuala Terengganu
Date Time : 2 Nov 2011, 8.30 pm
Venue : Dewan Sultan Mizan, Universiti Malaysia Terengganu (UMT)

Admission is giveaway for both performances. For some-more information, greatfully revisit a Japan Foundation, Kuala Lumpur’s website here.

Photo (c) The Japan Foundation

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