It was love at first sight for six-year-old Clare Lim, when she caught Disney's Frozen in the theatres.
"I first watched the movie last year with my brother, Joshua, and my cousin, Xue Qi, at the cinema. But after that, I lost count of the times that I watched it again and again," says Clare, whose favourite character is Queen Elsa, one of the two female protagonists in the latest Disney Princess film.
Her parents, Mr Jay Lim, 36, and Ms Cheryl Ho, 34, noticed the extent of their eldest child's love for the movie when Clare could easily memorise the songs and lyrics as she sang them every day.
"She would take a blanket and clip it around her shoulders, and start to re-enact scenes from the movie with her brothers, while singing," says Ms Ho, a Singapore Airlines flight stewardess.
Says Mr Lim, a music producer and senior vocal instructor at Lee Wei Song School of Music: "Clare would ask me to play the piano as she sings along. I also printed piano scores, so she could learn to play those songs on the piano.
"It is the first time we have seen Clare so absorbed with the music in a film."
She is not alone. Many children share her love for the soundtrack of the movie, a tale about the adventures of feisty Princess Anna, who is determined to find her sister, Queen Elsa, who has trapped the kingdom in eternal winter.
All 167 tickets for the one-day Frozen Sing-A-Long Party were sold out three days after Golden Village released the tickets on Nov 20. Held at Golden Village Grand at Great World City last week, the event involved Frozen-themed fun activities, contests and giveaways.
The cinema chain also hosted the first sing-a-long movie screening in Singapore after the one-hour party. This was a special screening of the 108-minute movie, and children were encouraged to follow the lyrics on the screen and sing along. The songs were replaced with instrumental tracks.
Regular sing-a-long screenings without the party will run at seven Golden Village cinemas from today to Dec 17.
The first Frozen sing-a-long screening opened in the United States on Jan 31, and had helped to boost box-office ratings to the current figure of US$1.27 billion (S$1.67 billion) worldwide.
These screenings have since been making their rounds in the US, Europe and South-east Asia.
Malaysia was the first South-east Asian country before Singapore to hold the sing-a-long screenings, which have already garnered RM27,000 (S$10,200) in box-office sales since its release on Dec 4.
"We are introducing this sing-a-long screening here because Frozen is not only the highest-grossing animated film globally but, in Singapore, it is also the top Disney animation," said a spokesman for Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Singapore.
"The popularity of the music is the key reason."
To date, the movie soundtrack is the top-selling album this year globally and has been certified triple platinum after selling more than 3.6 million units worldwide.
The popularity of the songs is evident here in Singapore as well. Ms Estella Sia Li Yi, 32, academy manager and vocal instructor at Lee Wei Song School of Music, noted that when the movie first came out late last year, all her students were very excited and knew how to sing along to the songs.
She says the most requested song is Let It Go, with the version by Idina Menzel being more popular with the younger ones, while the older students prefer the rendition by pop star Demi Lovato.
Do You Want To Build A Snowman, is the runner-up.
"I have never seen it in class before, where everyone likes and wants to sing the same song. Usually, everyone has his own preference," says Ms Sia, who conducts weekend classes for children aged four to 12, and private lessons for older students.
Says Mr Lim, who teaches older students: "Let It Go is very easy to pick up. Children listen to it and can pick up the structure and the lyrics easily.
"The songs are also very relatable to everyday situations. For example, Let It Go can help those kids who may be facing stress in school, and the song teaches them to literally let it go."
Even young women enjoy the movie and its songs.
Says 20-year-old student Nicole Lim, who has watched Frozen four times since it was released: "It is a heartwarming story about love between siblings with good characters and great music.
"The movie has a universal appeal, regardless of age, gender or race. Everyone can enjoy watching it."
This article was first published on Dec 11, 2014.
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