SMRT spreads festive cheer with live music for commuters

Above: Busking duo Ang Cheng Wei (left) and Er Young Yee performing at Bugis MRT station yesterday. Left: SMRT HR manager Adrian Gan, 35, giving out Christmas-themed stickers at the station, while busker Robert Tan performed Christmas songs.
Above: Busking duo Ang Cheng Wei (left) and Er Young Yee performing at Bugis MRT station yesterday. ST PHOTOS: ALPHONSUS CHERN
Above: Busking duo Ang Cheng Wei (left) and Er Young Yee performing at Bugis MRT station yesterday. Left: SMRT HR manager Adrian Gan, 35, giving out Christmas-themed stickers at the station, while busker Robert Tan performed Christmas songs.
Above: SMRT HR manager Adrian Gan, 35, giving out Christmas-themed stickers at the station, while busker Robert Tan performed Christmas songs.ST PHOTOS: ALPHONSUS CHERN

There will be live music and other performances at selected MRT stations and bus interchanges from now to Christmas Eve.

Rail operator SMRT has scheduled performances at major bus interchanges and stations across the East-West, North-South and Circle Lines to spread the festive cheer.

The performances started on Monday at Orchard and Jurong East MRT stations.

Buskers entertained a lunchtime crowd outside Bugis MRT station's East-West Line exit yesterday, performing festive songs such as Silver Bells, Let It Snow and some Mandopop and Malay tunes.

It is the first time that SMRT has scheduled performances at MRT stations and bus interchanges in the lead-up to Christmas.

"It's much more lively with the music and performances. It's quiet on most days," said Miss Fateha Yunos, 27, an assistant station manager at Bugis MRT station.

Besides the performances, Christmas-themed stickers will be given out by 4,500 frontline SMRT staff and over 200 staff volunteers.

Ms Nelly Liw, 35, a senior human resource manager at SMRT who volunteered to hand out stickers, said: "I'm proud of this company, so I like to take part in whatever volunteer opportunities there are."

To add to the festive mood, all SMRT passenger service centres have been decorated with special Christmas decals as well.

Ms Dawn Low, project chair of the SMRT festive cheer committee and managing director (commercial), said: "This festive cheer initiative is a joint effort across all our staff from trains, buses, taxis to come out and greet commuters at various MRT stations and bus interchanges."

At Bugis MRT yesterday, people stopped to enjoy the music or take videos of the buskers. Ms Cheri Wu, 37, a banker, said: "It's a good initiative, it really brightens up the station. They should do this more."

She stopped to watch busking duo Ang Cheng Wei and Er Young Yee, both 25, who call themselves The Unemployed. The duo, who have been friends since junior college, performed English, Mandarin and Malay tunes.

Mr Ang, who works in a bank, sang while Mr Er, a management associate, played acoustic guitar. "We don't have snow or Christmas trees growing in Singapore, so it's nice that we get to sing these festive tunes and, hopefully, touch people's hearts," said Mr Ang.

Other acts include the OnWheels Dance Group, made up of wheelchair users, and seasoned busker Robert Tan from Very Special Arts, which conducts art programmes for those with disabilities.

The performances are between noon and 2pm, and 6pm and 7pm.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 20, 2017, with the headline 'SMRT spreads festive cheer with live music for commuters'. Print Edition | Subscribe