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Sing50 concert hits a high note, celebrates 50 years of Singapore music

The star-studded show paid tribute to 50 years of Singapore’s rich and diverse music heritage.

Singapore, 7 August 2015 - Singapore’s jubilee celebrations hit a high note with more than 250 Singaporean performers and a 1,000-strong community choir belting out more than 70 of Singapore’s greatest hits to a 45,000 crowd at the Sing50 concert, held at National Stadium on Friday evening (August 7).

The star-studded, two-and-a-half hour concert covered different genres of music, highlighted key milestones and featured iconic artists who have made an impact in the Singapore’s music scene.

The concert opened with a tribute to pop diva Anita Sarawak in a segment called, Anita Forever, with ChildAid alumni Amni Musfirah, Liwani Izzati, Jermaine Leong and the ITE Show Choir performing Anita’s popular cover hits like I Got The Music In Me and Sophisticated Lady.

Singapore's sweetheart in the 70s, Tracy Huang, wowed fans with her love ballads singing two of her popular hits - Feelings and 哭砂 (Weeping Sands), while JJ Lin performed River South, and Stefanie Sun sang four of her songs specially arranged by Golden Horse award-winning composer, Ricky Ho.

Another Singaporean household name, singer-songwriter-playwright Dick Lee, performed with emerging artist Dru Chen and rapper Shigga Shay, delighting the audience with his popular hit songs including Life Story and Bunga Sayang.

There was indeed something for everyone in the audience as the Sing50 concert showcased music segments like:

* Rock and Rolling Sixties – performed by The Pinholes and Vernon Cornelius;

* Yang Gerek – performed by Jeffrydin, Rahimah Rahim, Ramli Sarip, Art Fazil and Sezairi;

* Indie – performed by X’Ho and The Oddfellows;

* We “Heart” Musicals – performed by Babes Conde, ChildAid Alumni & Friends;

* Xinyao – performed by MICapella;

* Jazz Moments – performed by Jeremy Monteiro, Melissa Tham, Jacintha, Rani Singam and the Jazz Musicians;

* Jack and Rai;

* Raagamatazz – performed by Mohamed Raffee, Maniam and The Vasantham Boys;

* Stars of Tomorrow – performed by Ling Kai, Reuby and WilTay; and

* Rock Stars – performed by Wendi Koh and Douglas Oliveiro.

International Guest Stars

Collaborating with Singapore artists were also two invited international guests, piano maestro Lang Lang, and rapper from the Black Eyed Peas. Lang Lang joined JJ Lin on stage to perform their hit, Clash of Souls. rapped alongside Singapore’s iconic rappers, Najip Ali, Sheikh Haikel, THELIONCITYBOY, ShiggaShay and 14 rappers who successfully auditioned for Sing50.

Specially Commissioned Composition for Sing50

Singapore music history was made with the world premiere of Cultural Medallion recipient Kelly Tang’s Concerto in Three Movements – Celebrating Singapore’s 50th Year: Toccata / Elegy / Fantasy on Geylang Sipaku Geylang. Performed by Lang Lang, 50 pianists from across Singapore and the Metropolitan Festival Orchestra, Kelly Tang’s concerto was a spectacle. Playing in unison on 50 Steinway-designed Lang Lang baby grand pianos, this was the first time such a musical feat has been staged in Singapore.

Sing50 Finale

The finale of this music extravaganza was a special arrangement of five popular songs over the past five decades by Indra Ismail. This was perfomed by:

* Rahimah Rahim who opened the sequence with the Gingerbread’s Roses,

* Rani Singam in Shabir Tabare Alam‘s National Day hit Singai Naadu

* ChildAid alumni Ariadna Padron and Amni Musfirah who took the stage with Eric Moo’s Kopi O and Zubir Said’s Semoga Bahagia respectively

* Dick Lee who closed with his popular and endearing National Day song, Home.

* Joining Dick Lee and the vocalists were Jeremy Monteiro on the piano, the 1,000-strong community choir from 19 schools, community groups and individuals, the ITE Show Choir, the 50 pianists and ChildAid Alumni and Friends.  

Sing50’s guest-of-honour, President Tony Tan, with Mrs Mary Tan, and Minister for Education Heng Swee Keat, also made a special appearance on stage in the finale. The concert wrapped up on a high note with Kelly Tang’s special arrangement of the Majulah Singapura.

Summing up the mega concert, Creative Director of Sing50, Mr Jeremiah Choy, said: "It was such an exhilarating concert to be a part of. The journey was made more memorable working with so many passionate musicians and performers in Singapore. I am now looking forward to Sing100!”

Added Sing50 Music Director, Mr Kenn C: “The real payoff in directing this excellent team of orchestrators, arrangers, musicians and artists - many of who are friends and close collaborators - is seeing all of them come together to perform songs that are part of Singapore’s heritage, past and present. Our collective aim was to touch, remind and impact the audience with these songs. Seeing and hearing up close all the musicians come together and pour themselves out soulfully into the music that have been and are still a part of our lives has certainly evoked in me rich emotions, humility and the feeling of having marked an important milestone in our history.”

Organisers, Sponsors and Partners

The Sing50 concert is a showcase of 50 years of Singapore songs and music to celebrate the nation's Golden Jubilee. It was organised by The Straits Times and The Business Times of the Singapore Press Holdings Group, and produced by arts and culture organisation, The RICE Company Limited (RICE).

Mr Alan John, Deputy Editor of The Straits Times and Co-chairman of the Sing50 concert, said: "For me, the best part of being involved in Sing50 has been seeing so many wonderfully talented people come together to celebrate Singapore songs and music from the past five decades. The Straits Times, which marks its 170th anniversary this year, is happy to join Singaporeans in celebrating our nation's golden jubilee with this concert. I hope everyone had an enjoyable, memorable evening."

Editor of The Business Times and Co-chairman of the Sing50 concert Mr Alvin Tay, said: “The Sing50 concert is one of the most ambitious events which The Business Times has co-organised. The concert would not have been possible without the overwhelming support and enthusiasm that we have received from the artistes, performers, sponsors, Ministries, and especially the community. Tonight, we witnessed how the community came together to celebrate Singapore music and to embrace our nation’s diversity and our national identity.”

Chief Executive Officer of The RICE Company Limited, Mr Colin Goh, added: "When The RICE Company Limited was asked to produce this show, we accepted it without any hesitation as it would mean giving our Singapore musicians their rightful place in the history of Singapore’s music scene. At the same time, we wanted to include more levels of involvements like our young artists from ChildAid concerts, members of the community, thus making it a people’s concert in celebration of our jubilee year.

Also involved throughout the Sing50 journey were the concert’s three major sponsors:

* Presenting Sponsor, Mapletree Investments Pte Ltd (Mapletree);

* Supporting Presenter, Resorts World Sentosa;

* Sponsor, Zurich;

* concert partners Metropolitan Festival Orchestra (MFO) and Steinway Gallery Singapore.

Mr Wan Kwong Weng, Head, Group Corporate Services and Group General Counsel at Mapletree Investments Pte Ltd (温广荣先生,丰树集团企业事务主管与集团总法律顾问) shared, “When we first embarked on discussions with the Sing50 concert organisers more than a year ago, we shared the common goal to celebrate Singapore through a showcase of local music. We knew that this would be a challenging project because of its sheer scale of involving over 1,000 performers from all walks of life. However, it was befitting of the occasion – to celebrate 50 years of Singapore’s growth and progress.

Mr Wan added that as a relatively young company, Mapletree Investments wanted to be a part of this mega concert because it would truly be a performance for Singapore by Singapore, and a special gift to fellow citizens. "Sing50 also provided the opportunity to invite Mapletree’s staff and their families to celebrate SG50. It is indeed heartening to see all of them enjoying tonight’s performance. Like the concert’s organisers, we do not want this to be a one-off event and Mapletree has, in the last few months leading up to this big event, helped to raise additional funds for related causes such as The Business Times Budding Artists Fund and The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund. In addition, we hope to continue supporting the local music scene and hosting annual programmes spun off from Sing50, at our properties.”

Mrs Seah-Khoo Ee Boon, Senior Vice President, Human Resources and Communications, Resorts World Sentosa (佘邱依文, 圣淘沙名胜世界人力资源与企业传播部高级副总裁) , said: “It has been a fantastic journey for us joining the organising committee and sponsors in realising the Sing50 concert today, our gift to the nation’s Golden Jubilee.  As Singapore’s first integrated resort, Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) is a champion of local entertainment and Sing50 is an excellent platform for us to pay tribute to Singapore’s rich and diverse pop music scene.  We also thank our 80 RWS volunteers who lend support to today’s successful event as Sing50 volunteers. At RWS, we stay committed to give back to the community.  The strong support of our RWS volunteers embodies the true spirit of RWS Cares’ corporate social responsibility commitment.”

Mr Jonathan Rake, Country CEO and CEO of Zurich’s General Insurance business in Singapore, shared: “Being a charity sponsor for Sing50 is a great way for Zurich to give back to the community and it provides us with an opportunity to show our local commitment and dedication to Singapore in a meaningful way. I'm incredibly heartened to celebrate the nation's birthday in such a spectacular way at the concert. My sincere appreciation to The Straits Times and The Business Times for organising this event, as well as the various sponsors and partners who pulled this magnificent experience together. We wish Singapore a happy 50th birthday and continued success in years to come.”

Mr Low Jia Hua, General Manager of the Metropolitan Festival Orchestra (刘嘉桦, 总经理,大都会馆弦乐团), said: “Sing50 has been a very exciting and fulfilling project for the Metropolitan Festival Orchestra (MFO) to be part of. MFO’s vision is to enrich lives through orchestral performances that connect, inspire and entertain, and our involvement in the Sing50 concert has allowed us to do just that on a very large scale. We hope that more audiences can come to appreciate the beauty and excitement of a full-symphony orchestra performing live and we are thankful for the opportunity to be part of Sing50.”

Ms Celine Goh, General Manager of Steinway Gallery Singapore (吴诗宁总经理施坦威琴廊新加坡), said: “I am deeply honoured to be part of the Sing50 concert and it has been truly an amazing experience. Being a part of Sing50 makes me understand that no matter how good an instrument can be, it can only get better when you know that it is played by musicians who have the music in their blood and their heart for their soul. I personally feel that the process of putting the piano experience together only marks the beginning of a success story for Singapore when our young musical talents will hopefully contribute greater self-identity for local music on an international stage one day.”

The music does not end with Sing50. Efforts to preserve and promote Singapore’s music heritage continues even after the concert is over. Said Mr Colin Goh of RICE:  “The celebration of our music heritage must be promoted and supported long after this concert is over.  In January this year, we launched the Sing50 Fund, an industry led initiative to continue this effort. We are certain that by the time we celebrate Singapore’s Diamond Jubilee in 2040, people will look back and say that this generation had the vision in preserving Singapore’s music heritage”.

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Attachment: Minister Lawrence Wong's quote

Issued by Singapore Press Holdings Ltd
Co. Registration. No. 198402868E

For more information, please contact:

Yasminbee Sheikh (Ms) 
Integrated Communications, 
The RICE Company Limited 

Deror Wong (Mr) 
Assistant Manager, 
Corporate Communications & CSR 
Singapore Press Holdings Limited 
DID: 6319 1226

About Sing50 concert 
Sing50 is a celebration concert of 50 years of Singapore Music co-organised by The Straits Times and The Business Times of Singapore Press Holdings Limited. The two-hour long concert will be staged at the new National Stadium, Singapore Sports Hub on 7th August 2015, two days ahead of Singapore's 50th National Day. The mega concert will feature iconic popular songs, composers, performers and stories that mark the milestones of music in Singapore for the past 50 years. The concert will also showcase both established and new talents from an almost all-Singapore cast in the local and international music scene. This inter-generational music concert is a birthday gift to the nation's golden jubilee SG50 celebrations. 

About The Straits Times
The Straits Times is the English-language flagship daily of Singapore Press Holdings and the most-read newspaper in Singapore. It was launched on July 15, 1845, and provides comprehensive coverage of local, regional and international news. It has 20 bureaus in major cities worldwide, with its correspondents providing a Singapore perspective on what is happening around the world. Complementing the main title are weekly lifestyle supplements Digital Life, Urban and Mind Your Body, as well as IN and Little Red Dot for students. The Straits Times is also on digital platforms with its website at It also has ioS and Android apps, and a menu of e-books housed in a separate Straits Times Star app. 

The Straits Times has won multiple international awards, including from the Society of Publishers in Asia, the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers, the Pacific Area Newspaper Publishers' Association (Panpa) and Society of News Design. It was named Singapore Newspaper of the Year 2014 and 2013 by Marketing magazine and voted Singapore’s favourite newspaper 2013 by Superbrands. Its website won gold in “Best In Online Media” at the 2012 Wan-Ifra Asian Digital Media Awards. Its Communities microsites platform was named 2014 Digital nnovation of the Year award by Panpa, and got Gold in the Best in Social Media category at the 2013 Wan-Ifra Asian Digital Media Awards. 

About The Business Times 
The Business Times, a member of the Singapore Press Holdings group, is South-east Asia's leading financial daily. BT brings to its readers daily corporate, financial, economic and political news, analysis and commentary on print and digital platforms. It provides readers with in-depth coverage of Singapore and Asian business and economic developments, as well as global trends that impact Singapore business. BT's lifestyle journalists bring busy executives the latest in recreation, entertainment, the arts, design, food and shopping. 

For more information, please visit
Twitter: @BTbreakingnews