Music has emerged as a very diverse industry, providing tremendous scope for skilled musicians in terms of music production, mixing, direction, performance, and orchestration. Many music enthusiasts and musicians want to enhance their knowledge and skills in this arena, while building a bright career path. Accordingly, their goal is to pursue their education from the leading music schools, which can hone their skills while providing dedicated academic, infrastructural, and career-development facilities.
One such prominent institute providing excellent training and education is Selangor Institute Of Music (SIM). Situated at Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia, it was founded during the 1930s. The institute aims to become the leading music institute and studio recommended in Malaysia, associated with quality and trustworthy music education that nurtures a strong foundation for students to excel.
It emphasizes on nurturing students to become sanguine, dedicated, and jubilant people, while creating a team that serves with integrity, chooses quality, and values diversity. SIM consistently works on self-improvement to ensure students excel and explore their highest potential.
A Multitude of Infrastructural Facilities
SIM provides students with an ambiance, which allows them to explore, communicate, connect, and get educated. Some of its notable infrastructural facilities include an event hall in the main school, with a seating capacity of 60 as well as six multi-functional rooms with 30 music studios and tutorial rooms.
The institute also has spacious waiting rooms for parents and families. SIM has been an ABRSM (Associated Board of Royal School of Music) appointed examination center for instrumental examinations since 2015, hosting the examinations in June, July, and August, annually.
An Eminent Personality
SIM prepares students to become leading musicians under the ardent leadership of Dr. Tan Tat Chin, the Principal. At the age of 85, she has been running SIM for 42 years, growing it to an outstanding institute with over 1000 students and around 60 teachers and team members. Dr. Tan has been a role model to the entire academic and management team in aiming for the highest standard in all performances.
She has generously raised the standard of the music industry in Malaysia in various innovative ways. For example, SIM was the first to bring in many quality renowned international concerts, performances, and educationists from around the globe such as Gary Karr from USA; JU Percussion Group from Taiwan; Dr Malou from Switzerland; Dr Randall Faber from USA; Mr Dennis Lee from UK; Professor Helen Stowassar; Judith Johnson; Professor David Tunley, Dr James Cuskelly from Australia; and many others.
Dr Tan was also the first to bring in and stage the mega performances of a philharmonic orchestra, the China Philharmonic Orchestra in 1992. In 1995, she led SIM to become the first to host a 5-day music camp with 200 students in Malaysia.
Moreover, Dr Tan holds a strong belief that music is important in nurturing children’s total development from a young age. In 1994, her daughter Ms Yeoh Sheau In, who graduated with a master’s degree from Eastman School of Music, USA, pioneered Kindermusik at SIM, an early childhood music program from the USA. It was the first of its kind to be introduced in Malaysia, and Kindermusik at SIM has since built a strong foundation, nurtured more than 10,000 students, and positively impacted the future generations of Malaysia.
Brilliant Offerings in Abundance
SIM provides exceptional educational facilities to the students, with the objective of transforming them into seasoned musicians. It offers instrumental courses in piano, violin, flute, recorder, guitar, ukulele, drums, and vocal courses. In addition to its three main campuses, the institute’s specialists also teach at both private and government schools, kindergartens, primary, and secondary schools.
The institution carries out a rigorous screening and selection process when recruiting teachers as a part of its academic team. Team SIM strongly believes in a harmonious matching of character between teachers and students in order to achieve effective teaching. Accordingly, it runs class observations to understand and assess how the teachers work with each student.
Moreover, SIM also runs multiple student assessments throughout the year. With these arrangements come insightful information, which helps it to provide feedback and discuss strategies with teachers. This ensures the progress of the students and development of the teachers towards achieving the institution’s vision.
Development Beyond the Curriculum
The institute, in addition to providing excellent educational facilities, also undertakes different initiatives to ensure overall development of the students. It organizes annual professional development workshops with vast topics relating to musicianship, Kodaly, Dalcroze methods, teaching methods for children with special needs, and many others for teachers and students to attend.
It arranges for eight to twelve in-house recitals and concerts for students to showcase what they have learned throughout the year and major concerts at the end of every year. To enhance the knowledge of music and performance skills of the students, SIM frequently conducts master classes and workshops by senior and experienced musicians. Some of the renowned musicians who have conducted master sessions include Professor Gilbert De Greeve from Belgium, Dr Randall Faber, and Dr Yap Jin Hin.
Splashing the Colors of Success
SIM has always focused on providing the best for their students. Its dedicated endeavors have been recognized time and again. The institute is ranked the number 1 Kindermusik Top Program among the 5000 Kindermusik programs worldwide in 77 countries for reaching the greatest number of students.
It has also been consistently awarded Top Program since 2004 by Kindermusik International. Furthermore, it has achieved remarkable yearly results in the Associate Board of Royal School of Music (ABRSM) exams.
For example, in 2019, SIM scored a 100% passing rate with 82% merit and distinction. Many of its students have also been awarded Top Scorer Awards by ABRSM over the years. Many alumni of the institute have evolved not only into outstanding musicians, but also thrive in their respective fields around the world.
Career Development Opportunities
Team SIM believes that music students have many career options after completion of their courses, especially as performers, teachers, composers, music producers, or in any music-related business/ field. Furthermore, their confidence, adaptability, and strong attention span developed both on and off stage during music classes and training will greatly enhance their ability to excel in any field of their choosing. Many alumni of the institute are currently working in corporate, commerce, healthcare, and the legal sectors.
Taking the Next Step
Marching forward, SIM plans to continue to strengthen the quality of its music education and teaching. The institute’s goal is to grow stronger than ever with thousands of students and staff. It plans to reach out, expand, and provide its instrumental and Kindermusik service to more locations in Malaysia, while focusing on students who are serious and keen to embark on an unforgettable journey of music education.