Melvyn Tan (Piano)
Born: 13th October 1956, Singapore
Artist's website: https://www.melvyntan.com/
Melvyn Tan Ban Eng is a Singapore-born British classical pianist, noted for his study of historical performance practice.
From a young age, he went to England to study, first at the Yehudi Menuhin School when he was twelve years old, later enrolling at the Royal College of Music where he studied with Angus Morrison. At the Royal College, he was told by the then director Sir David Willcocks that he would have to study a second instrument; so he chose the harpsichord, which began his interest in early keyboards.
Upon returning to Singapore in 2005, he was fined for not having done National Service in Singapore, although he was studying in London during the time he was required to serve, he had already started a busy concert career, and he had already acquired British citizenship.
During his development as a pianist, Tan developed a passion for the fortepiano, which he has promoted throughout his career, and thereby changed other musicians' perceptions of this instrument. He has now returned mainly to the pianoforte and performs a wide-ranging repertoire from Bach to Messiaen. Of Messiaen, Tan has announced that mastering the composer's Vingt regards sur l'enfant-Jésus has been his proudest accomplishment: "It took me nearly two years to learn it, but it was the most life-enriching, the most life-changing experience because it was so spiritual and it changed the way I performed."
He has lived in London since 1978, and continues to give concerts worldwide.
Further Reading: Melvyn Tan
The Singapore-born British pianist discusses his new album of Ravel, Scarlatti, Weber and Liszt, released at the end of last month on Onyx.