Singapore, 5 December 2014 - The All-Stars Edition of annual charity concert ChildAid raised $2.327 million, a record sum since it first started in 2005. Proceeds from the concert, co-organised by The Straits Times and The Business Times, both of which are owned by Singapore Press Holdings (SPH), go towards The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund and The Business Times Budding Artists Fund. This year’s contribution brings the total sum raised for both funds to more than $10 million.
At the opening night of the concert held on Friday (Dec 5), SPH chairman Dr Lee Boon Yang and Editor-in-Chief of SPH’s English and Malay Newspapers Division Mr Patrick Daniel presented a cheque to two of the performers, 11-year-olds Muhamad Zhafir Salem and Dineaish Rajendran, also Budding Artists Fund beneficiaries, who received it on behalf of both funds' beneficiaries.
Guest of honour President Tony Tan Keng Yam, along with Mrs Mary Tan, witnessed the cheque presentation.
Also in attendance was Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Lawrence Wong, who was a guest performer in a group act. He strummed the chords to Ed Sheeran’s Thinking Out Loud, along with guitarists and vocalists Bernard Dinata, 19, and Nicholas Tan, 21, as well as vocalists Rahul Advani, 24, Dominic Chin, 19, and Divesh Subaskaran, 15.
The event was held at the Sands Theatre of Marina Bay Sands, the official venue partner.
Mr Alvin Tay, co-organising chairman of ChildAid and also editor of The Business Times, said: “This year's All-Stars Edition promises to be a rare treat as we welcome back on stage several young talents who had performed in previous ChildAid concerts. They have done well for themselves on the international stage. But it's heartening to note that for some of them, their journey started with ChildAid.
The audience at the event were treated to a star-studded line-up, including:
- piano prodigy Abigail Sin, 22, and violinist Gabriel Ng, 20, along with the Orchestra of Music Makers, playing Tristan & Isolde Fantasia for violin, piano and orchestra by Franz Waxman;
- soprano Janani Sridhar, 24, hitting the high notes on O Mio Babbino Caro (Oh My Beloved Father) from the 1918 opera Gianni Schicchi; and
- pop singer and winner of last year’s The Final 1 competition, Farisha Ishak, 20, belting out Aligned, the title track of her debut album.
The concert took on an emotional note in the acts honouring its long-time artistic director, the late Iskandar Ismail, who had a hand in shaping ChildAid since 2006 and was involved in this year’s concert up to his death.
Images of the Cultural Medallion recipient – put together by multimedia artist Brian Gothong Tan – played on screen as classical guitarist Kevin Loh, 16, performed the song Cavatina, also used in the 1978 film The Deer Hunter. ChildAid vocalists also sang Abba’s Thank You for the Music – a hat tip to Mr Iskandar who was fondly nicknamed the “Music Man”.
At the finale, the entire ChildAid cast performed the ChildAid theme song A World To Imagine, composed by Mr Iskandar with lyrics by poet Paul Tan – based on his original music arrangement from 2006. The piece was conducted by ChildAid music director Julian Wong. Wong himself was a performer in the 2006 edition and had then played the song on the piano.
ChildAid co-organising chairman Serene Goh, who is also The Straits Times Schools editor, said: "This year's show is as much about heart as it is about talent. I'm privileged to have seen the vision of so many talented individuals come true. I believe our artistic director Iskandar would have been extremely proud of all the performers, as are all of us. We raised a lot of money for both The Straits Times Pocket Money Fund and The Business Times Budding Artists Fund, and we are overjoyed that all this work will benefit so many young Singaporeans. That's ultimately what this is all about."
Said Mr Lawrence Wong: "I would like to congratulate ChildAid for 10 wonderful years of bringing love and joy to the less privileged through memorable performances by Singapore's brightest young talents. ChildAid has grown to become an iconic and inspiring fundraising show that we all look forward to. I'm heartened to also see our corporate partners coming forward to give generously and helping to make a difference. This ChildAid is a particularly poignant edition too, as we remember the late Iskandar Ismail through his songs and compositions. He will forever be our Music Man whose legacy will continue to shape our Singapore Story."
Two more shows of ChildAid will be held on Dec 6, at 2.30pm and 7.30pm.
For more information, please contact
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Incorporated in 1984, main board-listed Singapore Press Holdings Ltd (SPH) is Asia’s leading media organisation, engaging minds and enriching lives across multiple languages and platforms.
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SPH has 19 titles licensed under the Newspaper Printing and Presses Act, of which nine are daily newspapers across four languages. On an average day, 2.81 million individuals or 68 per cent of people above 15 years old, read one of SPH's news publications, either on print or digital platform. SPH also publishes and produces more than 100 magazine titles in Singapore and the region, covering a broad range of interests from lifestyle to information technology. SPH's subsidiaries, Straits Times Press and Focus Publishing, produce quality books and periodicals in English and Chinese.
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· Paragon, a premier upscale retail mall and medical suite/office property, well known for its upscale mall housing many luxury brands, located in the heart of Orchard Road; and
· The Clementi Mall, a mid-market suburban mall located in the centre of Clementi town, an established residential estate in the west of Singapore.
The Seletar Mall, located in Sengkang, is SPH's latest retail development which opened in November 2014. This property is a potential asset to be injected into SPH REIT. SPH’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Times Development Pte Ltd, also developed a 43-storey upmarket residential condominium, Sky@eleven, at Thomson Road.
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About The Straits Times
The Straits Times, the English flagship daily of SPH, has been serving readers for more than a century. Launched on July 15, 1845, its comprehensive coverage of world news, East Asian news, Southeast Asian news, home news, sports news, financial news and lifestyle updates makes The Straits Times the most-read newspaper in Singapore. Quality news, in-depth analyses, impactful commentaries and breaking stories are packaged to give readers riveting accounts of events in Singapore, the region, and beyond.
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The Straits Times has won many accolades and awards, including being named Singapore Newspaper of the Year 2013 by Marketing magazine and voted Singapore’s favourite newspaper 2013 by Superbrands. The Straits Times’ website straitstimes.com also won gold in “Best In Online Media” at the 2012 Wan-Ifra Asian Digital Media Awards.
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