SINGAPORE - Hoping to land a spot in this year's ChildAid concert, Valerie Ching, six, auditioned not once but twice - first in playing the violin, and later in belly dancing with her friends.
She was one of the younger contestants at the auditions yesterday for the annual charity concert co-organised by The Straits Times and The Business Times.
"It's a good opportunity to showcase our talents, and at the same time to help other kids," she said.
More than 150 young singers, dancers and other performers aged five to 19 took part in the auditions held at the Singapore Press Holdings News Centre. Those who make it past the auditions will get a spot in the Nov 25 and 26 concerts held at Resorts World Sentosa, ChildAid's official venue partner.
Singapore Chinese Girls' School pupil Heema Izzati Zainudin, 12, was among the hopefuls. Her older sisters had performed in past editions.
The Primary 6 pupil, who hit the high notes in the song Part Of Your World from The Little Mermaid soundtrack effortlessly in her audition, said: "This would be a good experience to learn and perform with other children."
Audition results will be released by Friday. Rehearsals for the 90-minute concert will be held from next month to November. They will include workshops during the September school holidays, where performers will learn how to execute show-stopping choreography and belt out tunes like the pros.
Cultural Medallion recipient Dick Lee, who is creative director, will take audiences back in time in the concert titled Jumpin' Jukebox Jive. It will showcase how pop music has evolved over the past 60 years.
ChildAid raises funds for both The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund - which provides pocket money to students from low-income families - and The Business Times Budding Artists Fund - which supports arts training for financially disadvantaged students.
Last year's edition raised more than $2.1 million.
Mr Marc Lim, ST news editor and co-chairman of ChildAid 2018, said it was "heartening to see not just kids familiar to us but also new kids, raw talent that has not quite been unearthed".
"We hope that ChildAid can be a platform for them to shine," he added. "With pop as the main theme for this year's concert, I have no doubt the show will be something everyone can relate to, from the kids to the grandparents."