SINGAPORE - The Chingay parade is set to go digital for the first time this year, yet is expected to still play its part in rallying people from diverse backgrounds and lifting the viewers' spirits.
The People's Association announced on Saturday (Feb 6) that the parade's theme will be "light of hope".
It will be aired live on Feb 20 from 7.30pm onwards on platforms such as Mediacorp's channels 5 and 8, the official Chingay website and the official Facebook pages of the PAssion Chingay Club, Mediacorp Suria and Vasantham.
It will also be available on Mediacorp's digital video on demand service meWATCH.
The parade will feature over 2,000 performers and 150 organisations from Singapore and all around the world.
The digital programme will also involve the use of Computer-Generated Imagery (CGI) effects that bind physical and virtual performances from six parade segments.
The segments will include an act that celebrates Singapore's hawker culture and a performance of more than 500 Singapore residents coming together to sing As I Believe by local Mandopop star JJ Lin.
Ms Jeanie Tan, Chingay 2021 Exco chairman and group director at People's Association, said: "Going virtual this year allows us the opportunity to enter not just the homes of every Singaporean but also reach anyone, anywhere in the world. We are excited to present our unique blend of traditional as well as contemporary and cutting-edge arts and performances to the world."
Local musician Benjamin Kheng, who will be performing at this year's Chingay, added: "The world we're in right now is a little fractured, but that's how light gets in. We're here to bring joy to people and I'm very happy to be part of this year's Chingay.
"This pandemic world can feel isolating and lonely; I hope people will feel like they are part of something bigger when they catch us on stage."
Separately, this year's River Hongbao will also be held a little differently. It will take place at Gardens by the Bay from Feb 10 to Feb 16, instead of its usual location at The Float @ Marina Bay.
While live performances are cancelled this year due to safe management measures, festival goers can still look forward to pre-recorded dance and getai performances.
The event is free, but ticketed, as part of crowd control measures.
Up to 2,000 visitors are allowed per time slot, which is either 90 minutes or two hours long. Up to four people can be registered per booking. Visitors will be assigned to one of three entrances to the Gardens to prevent crowding.