UGANDANS are building an international reputation as classical music takes root in the country
UGANDANS are building an international reputation as classical music takes root in the country.
Fred Kiggundu Musoke, 25, a teacher at Kampala Music School has been awarded a Licentiate of the Royal Schools of Music (LRSM), in teaching piano performance.
He received the certificate at a Graduation Ceremony/High Scorersâ€™ Concert that took place at Lions Centre, Sheraton Kampala Hotel on September 28.
He becomes the first Ugandan to get the award since Kampala Music School officially started in 2001.
Kiggunduâ€™s remarkable achievement seems to be inborn; itâ€™s a continuation of a family musical legacy.
His father, the late Dr. Apollo Musoke, was a professional pianist. He held a Licentiate of the Associated Board of Music.
Although he was a lecture in engineering at the University of Nairobi, Kironde also played the violin and the organ.
Rachael Musoke, Kiggunduâ€™s mother, was a chorister with Nyonza Nairobi Singers. Currently, she sings with Nairobi Music Society. She also lectures in paediatrics, at Nairobi University.
â€œAt home, we had musical instruments like the upright piano, recorder and flute. Music was all around me and it was inevitable for me to get involved in it,â€ Kiggundu said.
The music sensation was born in 1978 in Kenya, where his family had sought refugee from the Amin dictatorship. He began his music education with the piano at the age of 3, under his fatherâ€™s instruction.
The availability of instruments at home made it possible for Kiggundu to practise any time he wanted. Throughout his primary school education at Hospital Hill, he had picked intense interest in the piano.
When he joined Nairobi Youth Choir, at the age of 9, Kiggunduâ€™s versatility as an instrumentalist began to unfold. When Sue West, the choirâ€™s director, came with the idea of starting an orchestra, Kiggundu was among the young musicians to join the Nairobi Youth Orchestra.
He played the violin and the recorder. Later, he sustained a nerve injury on his left hand, which made it hard for him to continue with the violin. This is the reason why he picked up the flute.
Kiggundu received the initial instructions on the flute and recorder from his father.
In 1986 the family returned from exile and Dr. Musoke joined Makerere Universityâ€™s Faculty of Technology.
Thereafter Kiggundu joined Kingâ€™s College Budo for his secondary school education. For all the years he spent there, he scooped the Musician of the Year award.
In 1998, he performed in Kenya and won the first prize, in the Senior Category of the Kenya Young Classical Musicians competition. Later in the same year, as part of the prize, he played Mozartâ€™s Flute Concerto in D with the Nairobi Orchestra.
He first sat Grade III Examinations of the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music in 1990. He went on upgrading until he did Grade VIII in 1995.
At Kampala Music School, he teaches piano, flute, aural training and music appreciation.
Besides accompanying many of the voice and instrumental students at Kampala Music School, Kiggundu also occasionally conducts the Kampala Singers.
Conqueror of the piano