In a timely synergy, The Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra (MPO) celebrates its 20th anniversary with the appointment of 20-year-old Tengku Ahmad Irfan Tengku Ahmad Shahrizal as its first Youth Brand Ambassador.

The appointment of the New York-based Malaysian pianist, composer and conductor is in hopes to elevate the classical music scene in the country and cultivate the appreciation for classical music among the young masses.

The collaboration additionally aims to foster bonds between MPO and musicians, organisations and orchestras, not only locally but abroad.

“We hope that this will bring MPO international recognition in years to come.

“Irfan will bring the brand with him wherever he may perform and make known the presence of a world class orchestra here in KL,” expressed MPO’s artistic administrator Khor Chin Yang.

Irfan made his debut with MPO in 2009 at the early age of 11 when he performed his brilliant improvisation of cadenzas on Beethoven’s Piano Concerto at Dewan Filharmonik Petronas.

“It’s a great honour for me to take up this position.

“I hope to gain new experiences through this journey and inspire the audiences, not only those who are fans of classical music but youths of different ages, backgrounds and are probably into different genres of music,” said Irfan who was first introduced to the piano at the age of seven.

“One of the ways to interest the youth is to just have them listen and experience classical music and let their imagination do the rest.

“There is always a misconception with regards to classical music in that it is very restricted and proper, when in reality, there is a lot of power to it.

“We want to bring it to the youngsters in informal settings such as schools and not just through the concert hall experience, that’s what we hope to achieve,” Irfan added.