SINGAPORE - Over $2 million was raised at Resorts World Theatre on Friday (Nov 18) for the annual children's charity concert ChildAid.
Returning for the 12th year, ChildAid featured 153 young performers aged 19 and below last night, helping to raise funds for less fortunate children and young people.
Organised by The Straits Times and The Business Times, the concert, which also runs tonight, is themed "Living Dreams", and is a celebration of the fearless pursuit of dreams in spite of challenges.
The 90-minute show started with 20 harpists from local ensemble Rave Harpists, who opened the night with the ChildAid theme song A World To Imagine.
Young performers also performed pieces by composers and musicians who inspired them. Evan Joel De Silva, 11, played Funky Tango, an original by his idol ukulele virtuoso Kalei Gamiao, and Chen Jing, seven, played a waltz piece by her favourite composer, Frederic Chopin.
The young performers dazzled in front of about 1,500 people at Resorts World Sentosa, including President Tony Tan Keng Yam, who was the guest of honour, and his wife, Mrs Mary Tan. Also attending the concert was Ms Sim Ann, Senior Minister of State, (Culture, Community and Youth) and (Trade and Industry).
By the end of the concert, $2,049,147 had been raised this year for The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund, which helps needy students pay for transport and meals, and The Business Times Budding Artists Fund, an initiative that supports arts training for financially disadvantaged students. Last year, the concert raised $1.98 million for the two charities.
Since its inception in 2005, the annual ChildAid charity concert has raised over $14 million. This year's top donors are Citi Singapore, HSBC and UOB, which each donated at least $500,000.
Said Mr Amol Gupte, Citi's head of Asean and Country Officer, Singapore: "It has been our honour to be one of the key partners of ChildAid since its inception in 2005.
"With the concert's theme of 'Living Dreams' this year, we hope that the talented performers of the ChildAid concert as well as the beneficiaries of the two Funds will have the courage to pursue their dreams, tenacity to fulfil their aspirations and live their lives to their fullest potential."
Citi Singapore and HSBC are long time supporters of ChildAid.
Group General Manager and CEO of HSBC Singapore Mr Guy Harvey-Samuel said: "HSBC takes a long-term approach in community involvement.
"That is why we are delighted to have supported ChildAid since its inception, having seen first-hand the difference it has made to education in this community."
Suntory Beverage and Food Asia (SBFA) has also pledged $100,000 to ChildAid 2016.
This year's ChildAid is produced by arts and cultural non-profit organisation, The RICE Company.
The second show is at 7.30pm on Saturday.
Correction: An earlier version of the story stated that Citi Singapore, HSBC and UOB, each donated at least $50,000. This is incorrect. They each donated at least $500,000. We are sorry for the error.