Posted on 9 July, 2012
“When I get shy singing in front of people I imagine them as potatoes. Giant potatoes when they are close but normal potatoes when they are far away,” says Aina Betts, age 11. Already having tread the stageboards for three years with the Singapore Lyric Opera Children’s Choir, she is getting better at managing her stage fright. Sometimes.
“I used to sing nursery rhymes in the shower, and my parents thought I should join the SLO,” adds Aina. Her choir buddy Samuel Yuen chimes in: “And we can play in the changing room too! I like singing ‘cos you use the least muscles.”
Little Aina will be flexing her stage muscles this Friday at the SLO Children’s Choir in Concert, along with 100 other choir kids (50 are from the children’s choir, and 50 from ACS Barker Choir). They will be singing a range of songs by local composers Dr Kelly Tang and Dr Goh Toh Chai, folksongs from Asia and Europe, jazz remixes of nursery rhyme classics, and classics from musicals such as Les Miserables.
Lauren Tse, 10, who has been singing for two years, says that her favourite musical is the American TV show, Glee. “My parents says there’s too much kissing on the show so I can’t watch it, but I tell them I have to watch it to study for the concert! Hee Hee!”
Some of the choir kids have pretty much grown up with the SLO. Take Kendrick Koh, 11, for instance, who’s been singing with the SLO for three years. “My favourite piece in the concert is Bunga Saya. Oh, and also the one from Les Miserables. I haven’t seen the musical before on stage but I hope to, someday.”
They may tease and jostle each other in the mad rush to the changing room and in between rehearsals, but it was quite a marvel to see the kids snap to attention when the first piano note was struck. And when they sing – the sounds were clear, beautiful, and pure.
There’s nothing as hopeful as seeing young ‘uns carry on the arts baton. The children’s choir concert, aptly titled Don’t Stop Believing is testament to that.
Don’t Stop Believing – Singapore Lyric Opera Children’s Choir in Concert
When: July 13 at 7.30pm
Where: Esplanade Concert Hall
Tickets: $25 from Sistic