Sunday, 28 December 2014

3D projection show at SG50 countdown 2015

Display of Singapore icons and fireworks set to music at party by the Bay
By Lester Hio, The Straits Times, 27 Dec 2014

COUNT down to Singapore's Golden Jubilee year by enjoying a 3D display of iconic images from the Republic's past.

The 2015 New Year countdown at Marina Bay will feature, for the first time, a 3D projection mapping display on the facade of The Fullerton Hotel, as well as the usual crowd-pleasing fireworks.

Jointly organised by the Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay and the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA), the 3D display will feature a montage of sketches and graphics of Singapore's growth.

It begins with iconic images of Singapore's past, like kampungs and samsui women, before moving on to images of modernity like the city skyline and a Singapore Airlines plane.

The public can catch a two-minute preview of the 3D display every half hour from 8.15pm to 11.15pm from tonight to Tuesday night, at The Fullerton Hotel.

On New Year's Eve, a three-minute extended version of the display, along with a two-minute show of five key historical milestones of Singapore will be shown as a prelude to the countdown.

Singapore celebrates its 50th anniversary as an independent nation next year.

The display will not be the only light show that night.

Five buildings that are part of the city skyline around Marina Bay - Ocean Financial Centre, OCBC Centre, Maybank Tower, One Raffles Place and Millenia Tower - will also display synchronised themed lighting. These buildings will be lit in red and white and feature the number 50.

Mr Jason Chen, URA's director for place management, said: "This countdown is special because we expect more than 300,000 people to take part in the first official celebration of SG50.

"It will be a great opportunity for everyone to gather around the bay on New Year's Eve to reflect on how much we have progressed as a nation."

To further celebrate SG50, the perennial crowd favourite - the fireworks display - will include a new musical twist.

The eight-minute fireworks show will be choreographed to a score by Singapore musicians Julian Wong and Riduan Zalani.

To add to the fanfare, a group of about 400 drummers will perform live at the same time as the fireworks, timing their drumbeats to the fiery displays in the sky.

The drummers will also perform earlier in the evening at DrumGaia at the lower boardwalk in front of the Marina Bay Sands Event Plaza.

This year's countdown will also include the largest number of wishing spheres in Marina Bay.

A total of 25,000 red and white wishing spheres, which will be lit today, will form the number 50 on the waters of the bay.

Other events for revellers include a carnival at the promontory and a bazaar at the Marina waterfront, as well as ticketed concerts and performances such as Celebrate With The World 2015 and Celebrate SG50.

Party at Bishan-Ang Mo Kio linked to Marina
Thousands gather at different spots to ring in SG50
By Nur Asyiqin Mohamad Salleh and Lester Hio, The Straits Times, 2 Jan 2015

OVER 12,000 constituents from Ang Mo Kio GRC and neighbouring Sengkang West had Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong for company as they ushered in the year of Singapore's 50th anniversary.

The PM and his fellow MPs were at Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park, one of three satellite locations that were linked up to the main countdown party at Marina Bay.

Festivities at the park began at 8pm, with a mini-amusement park, booths for activities like belly dancing and gardening, and live performances.

Mr Lee arrived at Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park shortly after 10pm. He then penned his wishes for SG50, Singapore's 50th year of independence - "happiness, prosperity, and progress" - on a small clay tablet that was later displayed on stage alongside other tablets bearing residents' wishes.

The tablets will become part of an art installation, Mr Lee later said in a Facebook post.

Close to midnight, Mr Lee said on stage that he hoped 2015 would be a better year. It would be time to rejoice, and "commit ourselves to continue to build Singapore to make it better to tackle challenges". He said: "We have come a long way in the last 50 years. We have a lot of roads to go still."

Mr Lee added that even as the nation celebrates, "we also remember sad things which have happened in the year, particularly the recent AirAsia accident and the victims and their families".

"But we look forward and we aim to make Singapore better. Let's work together. Let's overcome the challenges and make sure in 50 years' time, we have a really special SG100," he said.

He then joined revellers around the island in a rendition of Kit Chan's song, Home.

Over at Marina Bay, more than 300,000 revellers, one of the biggest crowds to date, gathered to usher in Singapore's golden jubilee. Groups of friends and families settled in as early as 5pm to secure the best spots to catch the fireworks, bringing with them mats, food and entertainment to last them through the night.

Mathematics tutor Richard Oh, 42, was among those who welcomed the new year with his family.

"We're just here to enjoy the countdown, the fireworks, and because of SG50," he said. "Hopefully, 2015 will be a better and bountiful year for Singapore."

Indonesian tourist Erwin Subroto, 38, was also with his family at the countdown.

"The crowd, the festivities, the energy is so exciting," he said. "We can't find a seat and the kids are tired, but it's okay. Only once a year."

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