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ChildAid 2006: The hunt for Singapore´s Top Youth Talents Kicks Off

Singapore, 4 August 2006 - ChildAid, the charity concert organised by The Straits Times and The Business Times, is back!

Held for the first time last year, this year´s show promises to be an equally exciting showcase of Singapore’s top young performing talents, all under 19 years old.

To be held on Nov 29 and 30 at the University Cultural Centre, National University of Singapore, ChildAid raises money for The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund and The Business Times Budding Artists Fund (more details in the attachment).

Mr Han Fook Kwang, Editor, The Straits Times, said, “Last year´s ChildAid was a great success – tickets for the public were sold out and many concert goers asked us to make ChildAid a regular affair. ChildAid is a great way for The Straits Times to raise money for the ST Pocket Money Fund and to showcase the many talented youths in Singapore.”

Mr Alvin Tay, Editor, The Business Times said, "Besides raising funds for charity, the musicians performing in ChildAid also serve as good role models for young talents supported by The Business Times Budding Artists Fund. This fund was set up in May 2005 to help in the artistic aspirations of children with talent but without the means to take this talent further.’’

Providing the artistic vision for this year´s ChildAid is Singapore´s leading music arranger Iskandar Ismail. Well-known for his musical compositions and arrangements for Singapore´s National Day Parades, Mr Iskandar has also worked with many local and foreign stars, including Dick Lee, Jacintha Abishegenaden, Andy Lau and Chang Hui Mei. He is also a Board Member of The Old Parliament House Ltd, and a trustee of the BT Budding Artists Fund, which is managed by The Arts House.

Mr Iskandar says he looks forward to being the Artistic Director of ChildAid and working with the youth talents. He added, “I´m more than willing to use my area of expertise to lend a hand for a good cause. I hope the concert also shines a spotlight on the needy children in our society.”

Ms Christine Khor, Director, NUS Centre For the Arts said that CFA is delighted once again to partner The Straits Times and The Business Times. "This year, CFA’s partnership with SPH is via joint programming. One new feature is bringing Iskandar Ismail, who is also the Music Director of the NUS Jazz Band, on board. As Artistic Director of ChildAid, he helps identify outstanding talents for the show. A cause such as ChildAid lies within CFA´s vision to develop local creative talent and give the young a regular platform to perform. CFA is also keen to give technical and front-of-house help, and market the concert on campus."

As for the programme line-up, returning this year are three young musicians who were hits at last year´s ChildAid – classical pianist Abigail Sin, jazz crooner Nathan Hartono and opera singer Janani Sridhar.

“I like the concept of ChildAid and the diversity of its performers, from classical musicians to jazz and rock groups. This ensures that ChildAid can appeal to a wide range of people and every audience member will be entertained,” said 14-year-old Abigail, who will be joining the Yong Siew Toh conservatory of music at the National University of Singapore later this year.

15-year-old Nathan, who has just released his debut album,agrees that ChildAid is a great cause to be involved in. He said, “Not only does ChildAid showcase the next generation of musicians in Singapore, it also helps people understand what less fortunate kids these days go through. I just think it´s great that through buying concert tickets, they can help these children. So for me, performing for this concert is a must!”

The search for more outstanding performing talents has also started. The concert organisers are now looking for top performing talents in Singapore. Talents must be Singapore residents less than 19 years old and should be outstanding talents in the fields of music, dance or emceeing. Youths who have won national or international competitions or awards in their respective fields should also highlight these.

The preferred format for audition material is VHS, DVD, VCD, CD or cassette tape format. Interested youths should include a photograph and a one-page write-up telling us about yourself and why you want to be part of ChildAid.

Audition materials can be mailed to:

“ChildAid 2006 Auditions”
NUS Centre For The Arts
University Cultural Centre
50 Kent Ridge Crescent
Singapore 119279

The closing date for submissions is 18 August 2006. Shortlisted youths will be invited to the auditions, held over the weekend of September 2 and 3.

For more details on the auditions, contact Adeline Tan at 65166787 or email cfatet@nus.edu.sg.

Interested ChildAid sponsors can contact Shahrena Hassan at 6319-5097 or email shahrena@sph.com.sg

Issued by Singapore Press Holdings Limited
Co. Regn. No: 198402868E

For more information, please contact:

Shahrena Hassan
Asst Manager
Editorial Promotions
Tel: 6319 5097
E-mail: shahrena@sph.com.sg

About Singapore Press Holdings Limited
Main board listed Singapore Press Holdings Limited is the leading media company in Singapore, in the print, Internet and broadcasting platforms. It publishes 14 newspapers in the four official languages, including Singapore’s first free Chinese newspaper, My Paper, and over 80 magazine titles. Everyday, 2.8 million individuals, or 88 per cent of the people above 15 years old, read one of the SPH publications. Its Internet Business Unit manages the online editions of SPH’s major newspapers, which enjoy over 100 million pageviews from 6 million unique visitors every month. More recent online additions are the classified website, ST701, and STOMP (Straits Times Online Mobile Print), a portal that connects, engages and interacts with readers on the Internet and via mobile messaging.

SPH also owns a 20% stake in MediaCorp TV Holdings Pte Ltd, which operates free-to-air channels 5, 8, U and TV Mobile, and a 40% stake in MediaCorp Press Pte Ltd, which publishes free sheet Today. SPH has a 70% stake in SPH UnionWorks, which operates two entertainment radio channels, Radio 100.3 in Chinese and Radio 91.3 in English. In addition, SPH holds an 80% stake in SPH MediaBoxOffice Pte Ltd, Singapore´s largest LED network media company, and a 35% stake in TOM Outdoor Media Group, a leading outdoor advertising company in China.