An extract on #vsco
== History ==
Victoria School Chinese Orchestra (VSCO) was founded in 1974. The orchestra had a tiny beginning, starting out with only 20 members and limited instructors.
In the 1980s, VSCO saw much more participation, and its population grew quite a bit. It started to take part in community events such as Mid-Autumn Festival concerts and Chinese New Year celebrations.
The 1990s witnessed greater change in the orchestra. This was due to the Singapore governments efforts to promote participation in CCAs in schools. The school had allocated more funds to the orchestra, to cater to needs such as the purchase of better instruments and the hiring of renowned instructors from the Singapore Chinese Orchestra. The orchestra took part in school events like Chinese New Year celebrations, Teachers Day, National Day and Speech Day performances. VSCO even reached out to the community, participating in paid concerts for Old Folks' Homes.
Through the experience VSCO gained from the various events, along with the orchestras history of performance excellence, it managed to clinch the Gold award in the biennial Singapore Youth Festival (SYF) Central Judging in 1997.
In 1999, VSCO received the Silver award at that same competition. In 2001, VSCO achieved the Certificate of Participation. Since then, VSCO has attained the Gold award five consecutive times - in 2003, 2005, 2007, 2009 and 2011.
In the SYF competition in April 2013, VSCO managed to clinch the highest-tier award, Distinction. In July 2013, the orchestra was invited to perform at the Singapore Youth Festival Celebrations 2013, held at the Esplanade Outdoor Theatre, among a select group of Chinese Orchestras that were invited to this prestigious event. This distinguished VSCO as one of the top secondary school-based Chinese Orchestras in Singapore.
VSCO clinched another distinction in the SYF competition in April 2015
In the most recent SYF competition in April 2017, VSCO managed to clinch the highest-tier award, Distinction.
Todays VSCO is a different unit compared to its pioneering batch. It has about 60 active members and alumni, with various musicians from the Singapore Chinese Orchestra serving as instructors.
Practices are typically held twice a week for new members on Mondays and Tuesdays.
As members' musical skills progress, their practice sessions gradually increase in number, capped at three times a week - Monday, Tuesday and Friday.
Monday - All sections are guided by the respective instructors.
Tuesday - Combined practice (), where the orchestra plays together under the conductor or student conductor. New members of the orchestra are not required to turn up for practice on this day
Friday - All sections have self-practice without the instructors/Bonding day for all members. This is on a seasonal basis, and self practice will start closer to SYF/concert dates.
Saturday(Not always applied) - Combined practice/Sectional practice. This practice session is only activated closer to SYF/concert dates, and only when the orchestra requires extra practice.