Altenburg Arts Pte Ltd was founded by Lionel Choi in Singapore in 2018 as a diversified arts consultancy firm, with a focus on classical music. In the area of concert production, we aspire to be a premier presenter of world-class, high-quality classical music productions and projects. As an independent promoter, we aim to attract talented artists from around the world to perform in Singapore and in the region, particularly, but not exclusively, in non-orchestral settings such as solo recitals and chamber music.
In addition to concerts, we engage in music education projects, as well as artist management on a general, regional and project basis.
To engage, inspire, educate and entertain communities through the arts, particularly classical music
To enliven the artistic and cultural calendar of Singapore
To contribute to high-quality local and international classical music programming in Singapore
MEET THE TEAM
The ambitions of Altenburg Arts are built on the experience of, and the many music-related connections established by, our founder Lionel Choi during his nine-year tenure from 2010 to 2018 as Artistic Director of the Singapore International Piano Festival. Over the years, he had the opportunity to present and to form such meaningful friendships with many internationally celebrated artists, including Martha Argerich, Yuja Wang, Dang Thai Son, Seong Jin Cho, Nelson Freire, Stephen Kovacevich, Arnaldo Cohen, Stephen Hough, Yevgeny Sudbin, Benjamin Grosvenor, Piotr Anderszewski, Cédric Tiberghien, Kun-Woo Paik and Shai Wosner.
From 2011 to 2020, Lionel was on the Board of Directors of the Singapore Symphony Group (SSG), the leading proponent guardian of classical music excellence in Singapore which also manages several performing groups, including the professional Singapore Symphony Orchestra and the Singapore National Youth Orchestra.
Lionel may be a qualified lawyer by training, a wealth and estate planner by profession and Managing Director in a global private bank by day, but his involvement in music – from piano to choral conducting to singing – dates back to when he was a child, starting with piano lessons at age 3 and graduating top of his class at secondary school in music.
For a decade since 1997, Lionel was resident classical music reviewer with the main daily newspaper in Singapore, The Straits Times, for which he also had the opportunity to meet and interview such artists as violinists Anne-Sophie Mutter, Sarah Chang, Gil Shaham and Cho-Liang Lin, cellist Jian Wang, conductor Lan Shui, and pianist Stephen Hough. He also contributed from time to time to a variety of print publications locally and abroad, including The Business Times, The Esplanade’s The Arts Magazine, Singapore Airlines’ Silver Kris, and the International Piano Quarterly, a UK-based specialist piano magazine which was then part of the Gramophone folio of publications. From 1997 to 2003, he was a part-time producer-presenter with the now defunct Passion 99.5FM of the National Arts Council, where, besides hosting regular programming ‘live’, he also produced a 13-part one-hour series called “The Piano” (1999) and a one-hour special feature interview with British pianist Stephen Hough.
Online, Lionel has been described as an “early Internet Prokofiev pioneer”, culminating in him contributing, as a founding staff writer, many writings to the now defunct Prokofiev.org, an online database on all things relating to the Russian composer Serge Prokofiev, supported by the Prokofiev family and the Serge Prokofiev Archive at Goldsmiths College, London.
Lionel was invited by the European Foundation for Support of Culture to be on the judging panel at the 12th Shanghai International Piano Competition for Young Artists in 2019, alongside such eminent pedagogues and pianists as Yafen Zhu, Sergei Edelmann, Ewa Poblocka, Stepan Simonian, Hae-Young Kim and Zhe Tang. He was also on the judging panel at the 5th Steinway Youth Piano Competition in May 2020, possibly the first music competition in the world conducted entirely via livestreaming, and at the Lucien Wang Piano Competition in 2021.
A graduate with honours in Music Education (Voice) of the prestigious Shanghai Conservatory of Music, Jimmy Qi Jian is an experienced and much sought-after vocalist and voice teacher in Shanghai and, more recently, in Singapore. Schooled in the finest traditions of the Conservatory, where Jimmy received and excelled in an all-round music education including Western opera, it was ultimately in the fields of pop, musical theatre and Chinese folk music where he found his niche as a solo performer, after attending a final-year popular music production course at the Conservatory conducted by the eminent veteran singer-songwriter Shinji Tanimura (谷村新司) from Japan.
As both stage performer, recording artist and instructor, Jimmy has worked with a wide range of artists and producers in the Chinese pop scene, including Lee Wei Song, Lee Si Song and Tanimura. With Tanimura, he has performed in various regional and global music events, including the Asia Pop Festival at the World Expo in Nagoya, Japan where he shared the stage with Tanimura, Natsukawa Rimi, Asuca Hayashi, Mao Ning and SUGAR, among other international pop stars.
Besides performing, Jimmy has a wealth of teaching experience, having taught privately and also been a full-time founding senior voice teacher at the Shanghai campus of the acclaimed Lee Wei Song School of Music, before coming to Singapore in 2008 where he continues to perform and teach locally. Since arriving in Singapore, he is also an adviser to the Echo Philharmonic Society and an active member of its Chorus and Chamber Chorus, and, for several years, sang tenor with the Singapore Symphony Chorus.
As part of the founding team at Altenburg Arts, Jimmy has had to take on multiple duties, including business development, artist liaison, stage management, art direction, audio and video production and sound engineering, teaching and arts consulting.