Friday, December 27, 2013

Marina Bay Singapore Countdown 2014

Marina Bay Singapore Countdown 2014 (MBSC) will usher in the New Year with an eight-minute fireworks display, 20,000 wishing spheres set afloat on Marina Bay, and a 40-second LED countdown display on the façade of the Ocean Financial Centre – a first for the countdown.

Jointly presented by Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay and Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) for the ninth year, Singaporeans will be brought together by music, film and fireworks based on the theme Beautiful Life.

Fireworks by the Bay; LED Countdown 
As a new feature for the countdown, the Ocean Financial Centre façade will light up in a specially designed LED countdown display. This will begin 40 seconds before midnight, ending in a 10-second countdown to the New Year. This will be followed by an eight-minute display of fireworks launched in a five-pronged formation representing intertwined lives. The play of colours and water illustrates the beauty of life. 
This year, Esplanade has selected fireworks music first presented at the 2011 countdown. In turns rousing, contemplative, dramatic and delicate, the music reflects the evening‟s theme: Beautiful Life. Its range of musical motifs also reflects the cultural diversity of the country. 

Mr Benson Puah, CEO, The Esplanade Co Ltd, said: “A Beautiful Life is not just about how good we wish our lives to be but also the memories that make us who we are. These little treasures of memories, of things beautifully familiar, put a smile in our hearts. In this age of throwaway lifestyles, it is perhaps meaningful that we remember some of the wonderful music that has so moved us. We have selected a powerfully evocative and memorable piece of music by Iskandar Ismail who probably writes the most beautiful music each year for our countdown fireworks. This piece was first performed at the 2011 countdown. Like life‟s most precious moments, great music like this is meant to be savoured, relived, and celebrated.” 
Performed by young Singapore artists, Rit Xu (dizi), Yang Jiwei (sheng) and Yvonne Tay (guzheng), alongside established musicians such as Adam Lee (guitar), Mike Chiang (erhu) and Lazar Sebastien (Indian violin), the music will be broadcast „live‟ on MediaCorp radio station Symphony 92.4FM. The public can watch the fireworks „live‟ on Channel NewsAsia and MediaCorp Channels 5 and 8 or enjoy them from the 
various vantage points around the Bay.
Mr Ng Lang, CEO, Urban Redevelopment Authority, said: “The Marina Bay Singapore Countdown has now firmly established itself as the event for the community to celebrate the start of the new year. Each year, we have a team who works very hard to line up activities to make the event better than the previous one. 
However, what ultimately makes the event truly successful is the support of the community, and we hope to see more people at the Bay this year to usher in the new year with us.” 

Wishing Spheres: Reflecting Singapore’s Hopes, Wishes and Dreams 
Every year, more than 500,000 Singapore residents and visitors pen their wishes, hopes and dreams on spheres that are set afloat in the Bay. For the first time, these will include wishes from overseas Singaporeans who wrote their wishes during Singapore Day in Sydney, Australia, in October. The first spheres were launched into the Bay in late November and 20,000 of these will be lit from 26 December, transforming the bay into an eye-catching visual arts display. 
Students from Nanyang Polytechnic and Republic Polytechnic have set up wishing stations on their campuses to encourage their peers to pen their wishes. From 29 November, the public can look out for several wishing stations across the island – from malls and libraries to parks. This year, new wishing stations have been added such as at Changi Airport and Gardens by the Bay.

Esplanade staff have also brought wishing spheres to 10 Voluntary Welfare Organisations (VWOs), reaching out to more than 180 people. These include elderly and youths, who might not be able to visit the wishing stations on their own.

Performances and Short Films 
The evening will feature a series of free performances as well as a specially-commissioned short film by Singaporean director Kelvin Sng. The film features a child‟s view of the simple joys of life, such as the beauty of time spent with loved ones and friends. Complementing the film are interviews with individuals who will share their interpretation of what a “beautiful life” means to them. 
Free performances will begin at 6.15pm at the Esplanade Concourse. “The Singing Chef” Irene Jansen and her friends will kick off the evening‟s performances with a heartfelt musical performance that celebrates friendship and gratitude. At the Esplanade Outdoor Theatre, host Vivien Tan will take the audience on a musical journey that calls to mind life‟s beautiful moments. Cat Ong and Sheila De Niro will bring their powerful vocal harmonies to the stage and bubbly personalities from local band Singapore Char Siew Baos will perform lively tunes past midnight. 

There will also be a free outdoor music extravaganza at The Promontory @ Marina Bay from 6pm till 1.30am, featuring local acts such as Juz-B, Chriz Tong and Queen Inc. featuring Sylvester Sim. Other international and regional artists include German DJ Ronski Speed, Malaysian singer-songwriter Namewee and Filipino rock band Rivermaya. 
Early revelers can visit the waterfront promenade and browse the various items on sale at the Marina Waterfront Bazaar or grab some light refreshments from Downtown Bites.

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