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Music flows with nature

The Straits Times Concert in the Gardens attracted thousands of adults and children on Saturday

Music filled the air on Saturday evening at the Singapore Botanic Gardens as more than 10,000 people watched the Singapore Symphony Orchestra play at The Straits Times Concert in the Gardens.

The weather might have been hot and humid, but that did not stop attendees from enjoying the music as they sat on picnic mats or lay on the grass. Some sipped wine while others had their pets in tow.

The orchestra played parts of Brahms' Third Symphony and Grieg's Morning Mood, as well as National Day song Home and tunes from the musical West Side Story.

Singapore Symphony Orchestra associate conductor Jason Lai said: "It's always an interesting challenge to come up with a programme for concerts (here). You need to set the right tone - if the music is too heavy and serious, it might dampen the mood."

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The crowd filled the entire lawn in front of the Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage, leaving latecomers to stand at the fringe of the green.

Those who arrived early enjoyed a stroll in the gardens, as well as snagged early-bird giveaways, such as paper fans, picnic mats and balloons.

Concertgoers were also given sparkling water sponsored by Fraser & Neave. There was also a book charity drive by the National Library Board. Attendees were given a reading sheet and for every 10 people who read for 15 minutes, one book was donated to a group of young beneficiaries. In addition, about 2,000 books sponsored by publisher Scholastic were given out.

More than 10,000 people filled the entire lawn in front of the Singapore Botanic Gardens' Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage for the hour-long Straits Times Concert in the Gardens. The heat and humidity did not deter concertgoers as they laid out their p
More than 10,000 people filled the entire lawn in front of the Singapore Botanic Gardens’ Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage for the hour-long Straits Times Concert in the Gardens. The heat and humidity did not deter concertgoers as they laid out their picnic mats in front of the stage and toted umbrellas. The concert was a way of thanking readers and subscribers of The Straits Times for their support. ST PHOTO: JAMIE KOH

The concert was part of the Singapore Press Holdings' Gift of Music series, now in its 12th year. It was also a way of thanking ST readers for their support.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 24, 2017, with the headline 'Music flows with nature'. Print Edition | Subscribe