More than 100 audition for this year's ChildAid show

Methodist Girls’ School student Ashley Jill Yeo, 12, sang the song Part Of Your World from The Little Mermaid to applause from the judges.
Methodist Girls’ School student Ashley Jill Yeo, 12, sang the song Part Of Your World from The Little Mermaid to applause from the judges. ST PHOTO: SEAH KWANG PENG

Auditions for the annual charity concert co-organised by The Straits Times drew young hopefuls who sang, danced and played musical instruments

Over the weekend, more than 100 children auditioned for this year's ChildAid, the annual charity concert jointly organised by The Straits Times and The Business Times which will be held on Nov 18 and 19 at Resorts World Sentosa.

The young hopefuls started auditions from 10am on Saturday through to 6pm on Sunday.

They performed at The Little Arts Academy in PoMo Mall in front of a seven-member panel, including show director Jeremiah Choy, music director Julian Wong, choreo- grapher Zaini Tahir and vocal coach Gregory Chen.

Some sang, some danced, some tried their hand at emceeing. One played the guzheng and three sisters performed as a musical trio.

The Braams sisters - Nicola, 18, on the piano, and twins Danielle and Dominique, both 15, on the trumpet and violin respectively - played a segment from a Mozart horn concerto, to nods and smiles from the judges.

After the performance, Danielle told The Straits Times softly: "I was so nervous."

The student, whose father is Dutch and mother is Singaporean, goes to the Overseas Family School.

She had her braces removed recently and had just gotten used to playing without them.

She says: "We wanted to give ChildAid a try. We love music and hope to share it with others."

Methodist Girls' School student Ashley Jill Yeo, 12, sang the song Part Of Your World, from Disney's 1989 film The Little Mermaid, to loud applause from the judges.

At their request, she also sang the ballad Thinking Out Loud by English singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran, with Mr Wong accompanying her on the piano.

After the performance, Mr Wong told her: "I love your voice. It is very fresh."

Lek Zhe Ee, 12, from Pei Hwa Presbyterian Primary, performed the Taylor Swift song Mean, singing and playing the ukelele enthusiastically. The self-proclaimed Swiftie later told the judges: "Every time I listen to her songs, it makes me feel happy and gets me emotional."

This year's concert marks the 12th edition of ChildAid. The event benefits The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund, which gives pocket money to students from low- income families, and The Business Times Budding Artists Fund, which funds arts education for children and youth from underprivileged families.

The theme of this year's show is Living Dreams. Says Mr Choy: "We want performers who are able to show they are inspired by the music. Talent is a given. Now we need to see the fire, the desire that they want to be on stage."

There is no quota for the number of performers selected, but the final acts are limited by the duration of this year's show, which is 90 minutes.

On the whole, Mr Choy observes that over the years, the standard of performances has gotten better.

This, he says, is due to parents nowadays being more open-minded and willing to support their children's pursuits in the arts.

Auditions continue on Sunday at the National Gallery and registration is closed.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 20, 2016, with the headline 'More than 100 audition for ChildAid'. Print Edition | Subscribe