The Serious Play Improv Lab (SPIL) series is 10 years old! A little history here, SPIL is a project of KLEX Festival. KLEX was first established as a film and video festival in 2010 by a small group of artists across film, video, visual arts, and music disciplines. Since its second edition in 2011, KLEX has featured programmes in film/video and audio-visual performances at the year-end festival. In May 2014, the Serious Play Improv Lab (SPIL) was established to provide a regular platform to nurture musicians and audiences interested in experimental, free jazz and improvised music. A small crowd niche, the SPIL series has witnessed many interesting experimentations and regional and international collaborations in the past 10 years, hosting 87 concerts and over 100 musicians featured. Since 2015, KLEX has a dedicated music programme in the year-end festival, and modified its official festival name to include “music” – “Kuala Lumpur Experimental Film, Video & Music Festival”.

Time passes, things change, and people come and go. The SPIL series is still here, growing strong and welcoming musicians and audiences with open and curious minds to explore different possibilities in the diverse realm of music! Come join us to celebrate our 10th year birthday! See you next Saturday at the Percussion Store!

Featuring musicians and good friends:
Chia Cheng Kok (percussion), John TR Long (saxophone), Kok Siew-Wai (voice), Lee Si Yuan (percussion), Loke XiaoYun (voice), MAB 189 (electronics), Richard Allan Bates (double bass), Sim Teck Sing (pipa), Topman Chong (tuba), Yeow Lai Chee (voice), Yong Yandsen (saxophone).

Date: Saturday, 25th May 2024
Time: Doors open @ 8pm
Venue: @Percussion Store
Add: A-01-03 LG Floor, Dataran Cascades, No. 13A, Jalan PJU 5/1, Kota Damansara, 47810 Petaling Jaya, Selangor.
Admission by donation: RM30
For Reservation, WhatsApp: 012 919 8031
More info and musicians’ profiles:

Design: Sim Hoi Ling
More info:
[email protected]
Instagram: @klexfestival
#klexfest #klexspil #seriousplayimprovlab #percussionstore #improvisedmusic #freeimprov #freejazz

Founded in May 2014, SERIOUS PLAY IMPROV LAB (SPIL) is a monthly music series of KLEX Festival. It is an art laboratory focusing on music experimentation and improvisation. SPIL provides a platform for musicians from various backgrounds to collaborate and present a new collective expression through improvisation. Over the years, many local and international artists have initiated experimentations and collaborated in the SPIL series, enriching the region’s experimental and improvised music scene.


Currently working as a percussionist/ timpanist in the National Symphony Orchestra based in Istana Budaya, Malaysia, Chia Cheng Kok is also music educator of various school and university orchestras. As an active percussionist, Chia has either performed or conducted in the Winter Guard International Competition, Japan International Orchestra Music Festival, Jiayi City International Music Festival (Taiwan) and also played with the Asian China Youth Symphony Orchestra in Cambodia (Angkor Wat), Malaysia Philharmonic Orchestra and many prominent local orchestras and bands. Chia was recently invited as soloist in a double percussion concerto year of dragon with Professional Cultural Chinese Orchestra.

John T.R. Long is a highly experienced performer, composer/arranger, and educator. As a performer he has played in many venues around the world including the Royal Albert Hall, Tokyo Dome and Carnegie Hall. As an educator he has led many youth bands and ensembles with great success: an impressive number of his individual students have gone on to study at the most prestigious colleges of music leading to successful musical careers of their own. John is British born but has been a resident of Malaysia for many years, currently residing in Kuala Lumpur. Some of John’s recent projects include arranging and performing on Zahid Ahmad’s Tuk Tak album and also performing in the horn section for Edd Rahze on his Soul Sisters concert series. John has just completed working with SIEL on their forthcoming album.

Kok Siew-Wai started out as a video artist, now active as a vocal improviser and artist-curator/organizer. She has shown her videos, curatorial video programmes, and performed in Asia, Europe, Australia, Canada and USA, including allEars Improvised Music Festival (Norway), Asian Meeting Festival (Japan), CTM Festival (Germany), Hanoi New Music Festival (Vietnam), Nusasonic, RRRec Fest (Indonesia), Kuala Lumpur Contemporary Music Festival, amongst others. Siew-Wai is interested in improvisation and the exploration of expressions using the human voice.

Born and raised in Subang Jaya, Lee Si Yuan began his journey as a contemporary drummer at the age of 8 before transitioning to classical percussion during his high school years. Since then, he is deeply ingrained as a ‘contemporary classical’.

Loke Xiaoyun sings, and plays the piano, the flute, and the Sape. She also has deep interest in different aspects of music and was involved in different academic research projects in music education, music sociology and ethnomusicology. Trained as a classical musician, Xiaoyun first dipped her toes in atonal vocal improvisation when she was a member of Merle Noir. She also draws inspiration from nuances in different ethnic singing styles. Xiaoyun enjoys working with different artists from disciplines, such as dance and visual works. One of her collaborative works was a multi disciplinary project with Seni Tiga #8: Foundry. She also contributed to KLEX Nusasonic Radio Episode #1: So Far So Good in 2020. Apart from performing, Xiaoyun is a music educator with students from different age groups and currently in training to be a Dalcroze Eurhythmics certified instructor.

MAB 189 is an individual who often wanders around the city of Melaka accompanied by a camera, digital recorder, touch microphone and hydrophone to achieve his aspirations of sonic adventure & eavesdropping experience.

Richard Allan Bates is a Malaysia-based double bass player. British, he was born in Hong Kong has also lived in the UK, Cambodia and the Philippines. Richard has played in a number of musical projects and collaborations. Rooted in free jazz and improv, his playing is focused on structured and unstructured free improvisation. Richard is a co-founder of Khatulistiwa, a recording and event space in Kuala Lumpur’s art district with a label focused on releasing music by and with Malaysian artists.

Sim Teck Sing is a pipa musician from Muar, Johor, Malaysia. Teck Sing started learning pipa at the age of 13. He received his Bachelor of Music in Pipa performance at Central Conservatoire Beijing under the guidance of renowned pipa soloist, Professor Zhang Qiang. Teck Sing is actively involved in pipa education by giving lessons and masterclasses to younger pipa players. In 2018, he held a series of solo concerts entitled “The Pipa Journey” in different states of Malaysia. He has been invited to perform in Korea, Singapore, Cambodia, Brunei, Japan, China, Taiwan and Australia. Teck Sing is currently a member of the Muar Vivo Society, instructor of Confucian Private Secondary School, and pipa instructor of SJK (C) Yok Bin.

Topman Chong is a musician and music technician in Malaysia, with over a decade of experience in the music industry. He started playing the tuba since secondary school. Topman is one of the founding members of the Axon Brass. He is also a member of Klpac Band and Klpac Orchestra, two highly respected music groups in Malaysia. In addition to his work as a musician, Topman is also the owner of Chong B&o Services, a highly respected wind instruments repair and maintenance business. With over 10 years of experience in the field, he has developed a reputation as one of the most skilled and knowledgeable music technicians in the industry.

Yeow Lai Chee started performing since 2004 as a vocalist and dancer for Malaysia musical production (Musical on Stage). Learned Butoh notation, Hijikata lineage from master Yukio Waguri and became Butoh dancer since 2009. Participated and performed a series of Butoh performances in her mother land Malaysia, and overseas. She set up her Butoh company Soubi Sha in 2012 and produced Butoh programmes and performances. She is currently a full time lecturer in TAR UMT, and obtained MA Cultural Management in Northumbria University, UK in 2015. Currently resume her performance as a vocalist.

Yong Yandsen is a free jazz and improvised saxophonist from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Yandsen has released albums through XingWu and Herbal Records in Malaysia, Utech Records (USA), Dream Sheep (Italy), and his solo debut on vinyl through Doubtful Sound (France). He has played at allEars Improvised Music Festival (Norway), Asian Meeting Festival (Japan), Mosaic Music Festival (Singapore), amongst others. Yandsen, together with Darren Moore and Brian O’Reily, form the improvised trio called Game of Patience. They have toured Japan, Singapore, Sri Lanka, and Thailand. Hungry Ghosts is his trio with European musicians Christian Meaas Svendsen and Paal Nilssen-Love and have done several tours in Asia and Europe. In 2022, the Big Foot quartet was formed with Akira Sakata, Seo Takashi and Darren Moore. Yandsen has also done several solo tours to Japan and Taiwan. He is the co-founder of a Malaysian record label, LaoBan Records, focusing on releasing contemporary improvised music.

More info:
[email protected]
Instagram: @klexfestival