SINGAPORE, 13 MAY 2022 – Pioneer prominent figure of Singapore’s Chinese orchestral music, Dr Tay Teow Kiat, and established Mandarin children’s theatre performing arts group, Young People’s Performing Arts Ensemble, are the recipients of this year’s Singapore Chinese Cultural Contribution Award (SCCCA). Minister of Culture, Community and Youth, Mr Edwin Tong presented the prestigious award at the opening ceremony of Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre (SCCC)’s annual fiesta, Cultural Extravaganza, on 13 May 2022.
Marking its fifth edition this year, SCCCA aims to recognise individuals and groups who have made exemplary contributions to the promotion, enrichment, and development of our Chinese Singaporean culture.
SCCCA 2022 received 60 public nominations, the highest number of submissions since its establishment. There was also an increase in the number of non-Chinese nominations, as well as submissions from sectors beyond the performing arts, such as martial arts and design industry.
Recipients of SCCCA will receive a trophy and S$10,000 cash prize, along with additional funding for their projects. Individual recipients will receive up to S$10,000 in project funding, while organisation recipients will get up to S$20,000 in project funding.
Past recipients of this award include Dr Liang Wern Fook, Mr Kua Bak Lim, Mr Lee Yuk Chuan, and Mr Han Lao Da for the Individual category; and The Theatre Practice, Ding Yi Music Company, Singapore Association of Writers, and Siong Leng Musical Association under the Organisation category.
Each round of the Award begins with a nomination process about a year ahead. The nominees will go through an evaluation and shortlisting process by a panel of judges, and recommended to the SCCC board of directors for final approval. The SCCCA Judging Committee is headed by Professor Eddie Kuo and comprises distinguished individuals from the local cultural scene — Mr Paul Tan, Mr Lim Jim Koon, Professor Quah Sy Ren, Ms Quek Yeng Yeng, Ms Woo Mun Ngan, and Mr Teo Han Wue.
“This year’s recipients feature a music veteran who has made significant contributions to the development of our local Chinese culture, and a theatre company for children that has been nurturing young trailblazers making waves in the local theatre scene. We are inspired by their passion and strong devotion to their craft that has enriched the lives of many generations. They are well-deserved recipients of the SCCCA this year,” said Mr Low Sze Wee, CEO of SCCC.
“It is heartening to see the quantity and quality of nominations received continue to improve over the years. This is a clear indication the SCCCA is being recognised and accepted by the cultural and art community. We have amended the guidelines to widen the eligibility criteria to allow both non-profit and for-profit organisations to be nominated. We hope this will give recognition to deserving contributors in their area of work,” said Professor Eddie Kuo, Chairman of the SCCCA Judging Committee.
On receiving the SCCCA individual award, Dr Tay shared, “I am but one among the many who have made contributions to Chinese culture in Singapore, and am honoured to be awarded the Singapore Chinese Cultural Contribution Award by the SCCCA judging committee. I thank the SCCC for its affirmation of my contributions.”
SCCCA Organisation recipient, YPPAE’s artistic director Ms Ma Gyap Sen said “When our friends found out that we received the award, they were very happy for us. We would like to thank the SCCC for bringing more colours to our Chinese Singaporean culture and for supporting us. Our steps ahead will be lighter because of you.
This award is a recognition and support for our local Chinese cultural organisations, receiving this recognition is therefore deeply meaningful and uplifting to us. We believe that the development of Young People’s Performing Arts Ensemble today will nourish and enrich our culture in the future.”
Nominations for the 6th SCCCA will commence on 13 May 2022 with a wider eligibility criteria, where the public can submit names from nonprofit and for-profit organisations. This is an effort to encourage more organisations to take part in the promotion of our local Chinese culture. For more information, please visit https://singaporeccc.org.sg/sccca/.
About Dr Tay Teow Kiat, Pioneer Of The Singapore Chinese Orchestra Scene
Dr Tay Teow Kiat is a long-standing figure in Singapore’s music scene and has established and nurtured several leading Chinese orchestras in Singapore. He was awarded the Cultural Medallion in 1993 and became Singapore’s first Chinese music practitioner who has been conferred this prestigious award. As the leading figure in Chinese orchestral music in Singapore, he was invited to conduct several Chinese orchestras in China and Taiwan.
To improve on his craft, Dr Tay decided to expand his musical knowledge and horizons by studying at Shanghai Conservatory Music in 1999 at the age of 62 and enrolled for the PhD in Chinese music conducting at China’s Beijing Normal University.
Today, he remains an active member of the Chinese orchestral scene, and he is currently the President of the Singapore Chinese Music Federation, and Music Director of the City Chinese Orchestra, Dunman High Performing Arts Centre and Reverberance and Emeritus Music Director of Ding Yi Music Company.
About Young People’s Performing Arts Ensemble, Mandarin Theatre For The Young, By The Young
Devoted to the research, development, and practice of the Mandarin theatre performing arts, the Young People’s Performing Arts Ensemble produces a range of productions including plays, cross-talk shows, choral concerts and musicals. They believe that theatre is the platform for children to develop their sense of identity through instilling confidence. Their highly localised cross-talkworks pave the way for more cross-talk creations that have distinctively Singaporean characteristics – some of these pieces are also performed and written by the young YPPAE members.
Led by Artistic Director Ms Ma Gyap Sen, Young People’s Performing Arts Ensemble nurtures the next generation of creative artistes by integrating Confucian philosophy and Western theories in creative drama in their training framework.
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