Minister for Culture, Community and Youth and Second Minister for Law, Mr Edwin Tong,
Board of directors and board committee members,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
A very warm welcome to the 5th edition of Cultural Extravaganza!
This signature event was first held in conjunction with the opening of our building in 2017. As we celebrate the 5th anniversary of our opening this year, we have lined up a series of exciting cross-cultural, cross-disciplinary and cross-generational programmes.
To kickstart the festival tonight, we will present a newly commissioned musical titled ‘Shadow Moon’, which gives a new spin to xinyao and the story of Chang’e.
Another highlight is our partnership with Singapore Federation of Chinese Clan Associations, where we bring together for the first time, over 80 paintings and calligraphy works from various clan associations. This Treasures of the Clans exhibition will showcase artworks from well-known artists such as Lim Tze Peng and Xu Beihong.
I am also happy to announce a ‘full house’ for our Arts Housing Scheme. With the Intangible Cultural Heritage Association and Jazz Association (Singapore) joining us this year, we now have 5 arts tenants, including TENG Company, Nam Hwa Opera and Drum Feng. I look forward to a more vibrant community and synergy among us and our arts tenants.
Now, please allow me to continue in Mandarin.
[Below is a translated version from Chinese speech]
Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre was mooted by the Singapore Federation of Chinese Clan Associations and incorporated in 2013. This building was officially opened in 2017. In a blink of an eye, we are now celebrating our 5th anniversary. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the support from everyone over the past five years, which has enabled us to present many projects in this space.
First, we have deepened our partnerships with arts groups. To highlight the distinctiveness of our local Chinese culture, we have been organising cross-cultural and cross-disciplinary works that incorporate elements from different ethnicities. Through original commissions, we showcase new works for the public to immerse in the blending of tradition and innovation, as well as fusion of Chinese, Malay and Indian cultures. We recently renewed our Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) with eight visual arts partners to provide space for their annual exhibition at our centre. In addition, we have signed new partnership agreements with Paper Monkey Theatre and Ding Yi Music Company. I hope that these new collaborations will spark further cultural exchanges and promote a harmonious multi-cultural society in Singapore.
Second, we have leveraged the use of social media to expand our reach, especially to attract youths and young families to our programmes. Over the past two years, the pandemic has strengthened our resilience and accelerated our digitalisation plans to bring our programmes online. Besides producing new video series to introduce our local dishes, traditional festivals and Chinese values, we also started livestreaming our evergreen TGIF Music Station. It has been well-received by netizens as they can continue to participate in SCCC’s programmes in the comfort of their homes. It also provided a platform for our local music talents to perform amidst the pandemic. Our online programmes have achieved over 6.7 million views, and our YouTube channel has over 300 original videos to date. We have also travelled our exhibitions to external locations. These include public libraries, shopping malls, office buildings and campuses. We have also provided online guided tours for less privileged groups, allowing more members of the public to get to know Chinese Singaporean culture. To date, more than 1.2 million visitors have visited these travelling exhibitions.
Third, we have improved our infrastructure. Our building has obtained several professional certifications. Our visitors can enjoy a safe environment equipped with high-quality audio-visual facilities. We warmly welcome more of you back to enjoy our physical programmes.
In order to sustain our operations, the Board embarked on a fundraising campaign this year. On behalf of SCCC, I would like to extend our appreciation to all our donors for your generous support. Your contributions have enabled us to continue providing our arts and cultural, and educational programmes free of charge or at low cost for the public. I am delighted to share that we have achieved our target of raising $5 million.
Going forward, SCCC will continue to deepen our collaborations with partners to expand our reach and influence. We will create a more inclusive environment and use a multi-faceted approach to roll out programmes to benefit audiences of different ages and needs.
Five years ago when we opened this building, we launched the first edition of both the Cultural Extravaganza and Singapore Chinese Cultural Contribution Award (SCCCA). I am glad to witness the 5th SCCCA recipients being recognised tonight. I would like to congratulate the pioneer of the local Chinese orchestral scene Dr Tay Teow Kiat, and local Mandarin performing group Young People’s Performing Arts Ensemble. Congratulations, and thank you for your contributions in nurturing younger generations in the local Chinese orchestral music and Mandarin performing arts scene. It is through your efforts that we have nurtured youths who love Chinese Singaporean arts and culture.
SCCC will push forward in our vision to promote Chinese Singaporean culture. We hope more young Singaporeans will feel proud of our culture and develop a strong sense of belonging. I look forward to your unwavering support in our work.
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