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Who is Cellobear?

Cellobear - Hendry Goh

Name: Chin Hong
Nickname: Cellobear

Musically Inspired Cellist - Authentic Digital Marketer - Futurist Oriented Educator


If there is ONE thing that has stayed constant in my life, regardless of the different things which I have done so far, it is simply this... that I have never stopped teaching or playing the cello. But what I strive to do is to be more than just sharing stuff on how to play the cello. Over my varied and storied stints as a educator, technologist, marketer, I have always used cello teaching or education as a means to integrate all of my life experiences into a unique take on the learning of the cello.

Therefore, it is my sincere wish that whoever has connected with me as a student past, present and future, will be able to gain from what I know to be not just a better cellist, but a better person who understands themselves and the world around them. This is the unique gift which I know I can share with my students.

If I have to choose one profession in which you give the most for the least it is probably teaching – if you take it seriously. You have to have the temperament for it to coax, to stimulate, to cajole, to discipline a young mind into good habits. You must have an aptitude.

- Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore Founding Father


It feels strange to have to introduce or 'talk about' myself online because I am by nature and nurture relatively private. If you want to box me in a time-period, let's just say my values are aligned to what many called a Generation-X. But there is a caveat - because I spent many years interacting with those who are younger than me, I cross generation-gaps relatively easily.

But because I believe it will help you connect with what I share in the articles, I am happy to indulge in some self-serving introduction of myself.

  • Started learning the piano (yes not the cello) when I was 8 years old. By local standards in the 1970s, its still considered relatively young.
  • Started on the cello when I was 13 - by a strange twist of fate.
  • Started playing with a chinese orchestra at 14.
  • Started playing for commercial events and gigs at 17.
  • Started teaching cello at 18

Along the way, I had the blessings of:

  • Participating at performance tours with orchestras to China, Malaysia etc
  • Playing with a Cantonese Opera Troupe at Germany
  • Participating in a few masterclasses - one of which is conducted by Yo-Yo Ma
  • Serving in 2 churches within the worship ministry - leading one for about 10 years
  • Auditioned and taken part in Asean Music Workshop (Thailand)
  • Setting up a string ensemble (and serving as cello coach) for Republic Polytechnic
  • Serving as the cello sectional coach at NTU String Orchestra and still going on.
  • Started one of the earliest string quartet groups in Singapore - performed in countless profit and non-profit events (www.gracenotes.sg)
  • Taken part in a few opera and musical performances such as Chang & Eng, West Side Story etc
  • Usually served as principal cellist at a few orchestras and string ensembles.

There are probably a few things that I may have missed out but this would probably for all intents and purposes, give you a good idea of my extensive musical backgrounds. I am not a prodigy of the cello and I am HAPPY to be so because of one simple reason, it allows me to draw a deep empathy to the struggles of anyone who wants to make really good sound out of the cello. I am confident to say that I thrive in solving the varied difficulties that my students face - some of which are not just technical in nature.

At this stage of my life (with family commitments and all), I am content to take a step back and just focus on more selective engagements and keeping a manageable teaching studio.

But in case you are wondering, I am much more than just a cellist and have a rich and varied professional life in other capacities - in education and technology. It is BECAUSE of the sum of all parts of MYSELF... that I am able to offer something beyond the conventional music education or teaching.

I believe that educating and training the musician of tomorrow is no longer just about spending 8 hours a days on solitary practice. The modern musician has to embrace the deep awareness of sound, mind and body in life, coupled with with multiple interest and passions that serve as a feedback loop into their music making expression.

That is how one can really play better with age, just like a fine string instrument or fine wine which has aged well.

My Teaching Philosophy

There are some fundamental cello teaching and learning principles which I embrace whenever I share my experience with students and fellow music lovers. These have grown out of:-

  • A rich experience in the education industry, grounded firmly in a problem-based, student-centered approach
  • My ever patient teachers and mentors of the past who have generously imparted their skills, strategies with me
  • Books, videos and not forgetting, my personal love story with the cello over the many years with fellow students, cellists and musicians


If you were someone like me without any music training background yet fascinated with the unique beauty of cello music and wish to pick up the instrument, Chin Hong is a good teacher to start with your cello journey. He is very patient and encouraging...


The first time I met Chin Hong, he came a across as a no-nonsense person. I was right. When I eventually took lessons under him, he was really serious about teaching Cello and doing a good job at it. Yet I was wrong, he is a warm and passionate about his work, and that made Cello lessons fruitful and enjoyable...


I simply love the way how Chin Hong explains the physics of cello playing. Music playing is about expressing emotion. But in order to achieve the skills to express the sound accurately, one has to understand how the instrument work and master the craft of music playing...