Youth Festival goes outdoors at Gardens by the Bay

Hundreds of students will perform against a backdrop of lush greenery and the towering Supertrees at Gardens by the Bay this weekend. Arts performances kicked off yesterday as part of the Singapore Youth Festival (SYF) celebrations being held in the gardens' Supertree Grove, Flower Dome and The Colonnade.

The annual festival, organised by the Ministry of Education (MOE), develops and showcases students' artistic talents.

"Gardens by the Bay, with its natural charm and architectural splendour, complements the showcase of the arts. It is a beautiful venue to engage families and the general public," said an MOE spokesman.

Given the outdoors venue, he added that some student musicians had to familiarise themselves with outdoor acoustics or switch from performing acoustic instruments to electric ones. Others had to pick up the stage presentation skills required to engage crowds.

Zhenghua Secondary's Vesley Koh, 16, was nervous about performing his beat-box act outdoors in the Supertree Grove yesterday.

The Secondary 4 student said: "I was worried that I would not be able to project the sounds. But the atmosphere of the place was good. It was a thrill to perform here."

Primary 6 pupil Anne Thong, 12, from CHIJ Kellock (Primary), played the violin during a strings performance in the Flower Dome yesterday.

She said: "The scenery was very nice. The song we played was about birds and being around nature - it related to the place."

If it rains, outdoor performances and activities will be cancelled but those in sheltered areas will continue. About 5,000 people are expected to attend the three-day event.

One of this year's highlights is a performance by a 400-member choir to start after 7pm today at the Supertree Grove. The group is made up of students from 10 schools.

There will also be band, orchestral and drum performances, as well as booths with arts and crafts activities. All are free except those inside the Flower Dome, which requires visitors to pay admission fees.

Over the next three weeks, about 3,500 students from primary school to junior college level will take part in SYF activities, including art exhibitions and dance, drama and music performances in public libraries.

This article was first published on July 05, 2014.
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