50 Years Of NDP

Parade goes high-tech

The night sky was transformed into a kaleidoscope of colours as radio-controlled illuminated kites – piloted by 42 people from toy kite maker GoFlyKite and the Army – whizzed around in the wind, captured in a long exposure shot during the 2007 NDP preview
The night sky was transformed into a kaleidoscope of colours as radio-controlled illuminated kites – piloted by 42 people from toy kite maker GoFlyKite and the Army – whizzed around in the wind, captured in a long exposure shot during the 2007 NDP preview show.PHOTO: STEPHANIE YEOW
About 8,700 union members and their families unfurled their umbrellas to form the largest human Singapore flag – measuring 120m by 80m – as part of the 2007 National Day festivities at the Padang.
About 8,700 union members and their families unfurled their umbrellas to form the largest human Singapore flag – measuring 120m by 80m – as part of the 2007 National Day festivities at the Padang.ST PHOTO: LAU FOOK KONG
An elderly couple watching Lindy Hop dancers at the Padang during the NDP preview show in 2000.
An elderly couple watching Lindy Hop dancers at the Padang during the NDP preview show in 2000.PHOTO: ALAN LIM
Spectators viewing the fly-past of the state flag at the Tanjong Rhu lookout tower in 2001. They were treated to a spectacular fireworks finale.
Spectators viewing the fly-past of the state flag at the Tanjong Rhu lookout tower in 2001. They were treated to a spectacular fireworks finale.PHOTO: LUIS ENRIQUE ASCUI
An SAF Red Lion jumps from a Super Puma helicopter during the National Education show in 2007. He parachutes down to the floating platform on Marina Bay – a first at a National Day Parade.
An SAF Red Lion jumps from a Super Puma helicopter during the National Education show in 2007. He parachutes down to the floating platform on Marina Bay – a first at a National Day Parade.ST PHOTO: MUGILAN RAJASEGERAN
Members of the Singapore Soka Association lighting up the night sky at the 2012 parade.
Members of the Singapore Soka Association lighting up the night sky at the 2012 parade.ST PHOTO: ALPHONSUS CHERN
Sparks from the fireworks showering down on spectators at NDP 2006. Free umbrellas had been handed out so they could shield themselves from the debris.
Sparks from the fireworks showering down on spectators at NDP 2006. Free umbrellas had been handed out so they could shield themselves from the debris.PHOTO: BRYAN VAN DER BEEK
A motocross daredevil from the Dunwell Motorcycle Show in Australia in the pre-parade segment in 2007.
A motocross daredevil from the Dunwell Motorcycle Show in Australia in the pre-parade segment in 2007.PHOTO: BRYAN VAN DER BEEK
The Singapore Armed Forces’ Red Lions making their descent with the moon in the background during the 2014 preview show at the Floating Platform. At the time of its publication, some readers wondered if the photo had been digitally modified, but it
The Singapore Armed Forces’ Red Lions making their descent with the moon in the background during the 2014 preview show at the Floating Platform. At the time of its publication, some readers wondered if the photo had been digitally modified, but it is the real deal.ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

Despite numerous challenges in the early years of the new millennium - an economic slump in 2001 and the rise of terrorism, and Sars in 2003 - the National Day Parades became more ambitious and creative, with carnivals, high-tech props and simultaneous parades.

Fun-sized skater

A lot of people might think, "Hey, you were only five, what do you even remember?" I was in the People's Association group. I was the youngest participant in the parade. All I needed to do was to skate (on a scooter) from one gate to another. Although it seemed very simple to everyone, I had trouble, as I was "fun-sized". I was always the first one in the line to start skating and the last to get to the end point. Embarrassing, yet memorable.

MS NUR HARYANI KAMSANI, who was the youngest participant in the 2001 parade.

  • MS NUR HARYANI KAMSANI, 20

  • ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN

    • Student

    • NDP 2001: Was only five years old when she was involved in one of the parade segments under the People's Association together with her two elder brothers.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 09, 2016, with the headline 'Parade goes high-tech'. Print Edition | Subscribe