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Singapore Chinese Cultural Contribution Award recognises its first recipients

Singapore, 20 May 2017 – The inaugural Singapore Chinese Cultural Contribution Award (SCCCA) ceremony was held this evening at the Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre. Minister for Culture, Community and Youth, Ms Grace Fu presented the award for the individual category to Mr Han Lao Da, and the organisation category to Siong Leng Musical Association. For their outstanding contributions to the Singapore Chinese cultural landscape, both recipients received a specially commissioned trophy designed by contemporary sculptor, Yeo Chee Kiong, S$10,000 in cash and up to S$10,000 in project funding.

The SCCCA saw a total of 47 nominations, comprising 27 nominations for the individual category and 20 nominations for the organisation category.

Dr Liu Thai Ker, Chairman of the SCCCA Judging Panel commented, “The nominations received for the SCCCA are a positive reflection of the growing interest towards Chinese culture, which can be attributed to the sterling efforts of the local Chinese community and new citizens. Han Lao Da and Siong Leng Musical Association in particular, have showcased outstanding efforts in the promotion and development of the Singapore Chinese culture, weaving in our unique Nanyang style of Chinese culture as well as contemporary perspective in arts and culture.”

Mr Han was recognised for his tireless dedication and innovation in the promotion of crosstalk in Singapore over the past four decades. Having established the Sin Feng Xiang Sheng Society in 1986, he actively brought in Chinese crosstalk practitioners and arts organisations to perform in Singapore, collaborating with them on cultural exchanges to present high quality performances and appreciation among local enthusiasts and crosstalk practitioners.

Mr Han Lao Da shared, “It is truly an honour to receive the first Singapore Chinese Cultural Contribution Award. From the very first crosstalk ‘Song Piao’ in 1973, to ‘Shi Cheng Xuan An’ in 2015, we have worked unwaveringly over the past 40 years to promote crosstalk and make it accessible to the community. We have seen the popular acceptance of this craft especially in the last 20 years and this is definitely more than an individual’s effort. Being conferred this award is the biggest encouragement to me and my partners from the Sin Feng Xiang Sheng Society.”

For the organisation category, Siong Leng Musical Association was recognised for their significant efforts to reinvent and rejuvenate Nanyin and Liyuan Opera in Singapore since 1941. The association has since gone forth to put Nanyin on the world map of music with international performances, and continue to keep the ancient art form alive by educating the younger generation about Nanyin through the publication of two textbooks on Nanyin and Liyuan Hokkien Chinese opera.

Chairman of Siong Leng Musical Association, Mr Teng Hong Hai said, “Following the footsteps of our forefathers, Siong Leng Musical Association upholds the spirit of innovation, while fulfilling the mission of passing on the cultural legacy of Nanyin. Receiving the award from the Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre is thus an affirmation of the association’s efforts all these years. We are excited and thankful for the support from the community over the years, as well as the hard work from the team. With this added motivation, we will continue our efforts to promote Nanyin locally, showcase the value of our Chinese culture, and to better integrate the art into today’s modern society.”

For more information on the Singapore Chinese Cultural Contribution Award, visit https://www.scccaward.org.sg/.

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