Fan-tastic response

EXCITED: Hao Hao’s fan club members, all in yellow shirts, waving their handmade posters and LED boards.

It is not uncommon to see fans holding LED banners, whistles, air horns and clappers at a concert, showing their support for their favourite idols.

The same thing occurred at the Shin Min-Wanbao Getai Awards 2013 on Thursday night - except that the fans were not teenyboppers but senior citizens in their 60s and 70s.

Getai organisers in Singapore say that getai audience members are more daring and supportive now, compared to those in previous years.

Getai organiser Aaron Tan, 37, told The New Paper:

"Attending a getai performance now is like going to a K-pop concert. The elderly fans are excited about meeting their favourite singers up close and they are not afraid to show it. They will come bearing gifts and red packets for the singers."

He said: "Even I got a Rolex watch from an anonymous person last year. It's estimated to be worth around $12,000."

Mr Tan, who has been in the business for 11 years and helped organise the Shin Min-Wanbao Getai Awards 2013, said: "Many of them may be senior citizens, but their energy levels match those of teenagers.

They start cheering from the start of the performance till it ends. I am amazed at their stamina and I am happy that getai can make the older generation feel young again."

Getai organiser Peter Loh, 62, agreed, saying:

"The elderly fans are more passionate. Not only will they come with presents, they will also buy dinner and drinks for the organisers and performers.

Kisses

"Some of the crazier acts I have seen include aunties requesting kisses from the performers, to which the singers will happily oblige."

Organisers explain that getai singers are gaining more fans these days as some of them are increasingly involved in television series and movies, which help to increase their level of fame among heartland aunties and uncles.

Getai singers are also very friendly towards their fans, which makes them more approachable and helps them attract even more fans.

According to the organisers, people who attended getai events in the past usually stood around and clapped when the performance was over. But in recent years, some audience members even follow their favourite singer around Singapore.

Mr Loh said: "These fans look at how fans of Taiwanese and Korean idols behave, and follow them. As such behaviour is more common now, fans of getai singers do not feel shy about expressing their affection."

The more popular names in the getai scene now include Taiwanese getai entertainer Hao Hao and veteran getai singer Wang Lei.


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