Anti-riot police seen at Clarke Quay on 'first Friday of freedom-ish'

PHOTO: AsiaOne/Keith Chua

It's time to let your hair loose and party like it's 2019. Well, almost.

It's been a few days since the relaxation of Singapore's Covid-19 measures, and all eyes have been on the Causeway opening, especially the tearful reunions between Malaysian families separated for the past two years.

But the easing of Covid-19 restrictions which kicked in on Tuesday (March 29) has also fulfilled the dreams of another group — live music fans — who appeared to be out in full force on Friday (April 1) at Clarke Quay.

The moment marks the end of a long two-year ban on live music at F&B establishments due to the pandemic.

However, the night of celebration was not without some drama.

AsiaOne video journalist Keith Chua was at Clarke Quay when he saw policemen and officers from the Special Operations Command arrive on the scene, temporarily breaking up the party atmosphere at around 10.45pm.

Screengrab: Instagram/Yourgirlchia

But it seemed controlling the crowd was their main concern as the law enforcement personnel assisted in dispersing onlookers who were obstructing the main passageway in front of the venue.

Screengrab from video: AsiaOne/Keith Chua

Other videos from social media taken at Clarke Quay also showed a joyous atmosphere as crowds of people — masked and unmasked — thronged the area outside live entertainment venue Warehouse Singapore and jived to the music.

@dronemecrazy First Friday of freedom-ish #clarkequay #aprilfools #fyp ♬ original sound - Drone Me Crazy

In a video of the scene earlier in the night, TikTok user @dronemecrazy wrote, "First Friday of freedom-ish". Another taken by user @blackpearl027 captured the exhilaration of patrons and onlookers who joined in the partying.

@blackpearl027 SG Clark quay 1st Friday open up late at this time atfer announcement! Everyone happy Liao !!!!#sgindians #malaysiaindian #tiktokvirus🔥 #tamiltiktokmalaysia #sgindiantiktok ♬ original sound - Black Pearl

The euphoric scenes on social media were met with enthusiasm as well as some caution from commenters. Remarked one TikTok user: "Thank you for participating today. We will know the results of the cases tomorrow."

Under the relaxed safety measures, wearing of masks is optional when outdoors, and up to 10 vaccinated persons can dine in at F&B outlets. The sale and consumption of alcohol is also allowed after 10.30pm — which means no more having to gulp down your last drink at 10.29pm under the watchful gaze of wait staff. Live performances are also allowed to resume but the nightlife sector has yet to be cleared for reopening.

candicecai@asiaone.com