By: Wu Hsuan Yun, Celeste
On May 30, 2018, two giant egg-shaped capsules (one blue and one silver, both with quirky doodle-designs on the capsule’s shell) rolled into Temasek Polytechnic’s (TP) campus as “audition venues” for SPOP SING, a Chinese singing competition for youths aged 13 to 25. The capsules sat at the entrance of Business School, functioning as a karaoke room for one; an enclosed space with only a camera, one broadcaster and a microphone.
Mediacorp visited eight school campuses to hold auditions for young, passionate singers all over Singapore. However, only 20 budding vocalists will make it to the official broadcast, happening this September.
Contestants were to pick a song out of a list of 200 local compositions and sing inside the capsules as part of their audition. Their performances were recorded and some were selected for broadcast on TV screens set up around the entrance of TP’s Business School.
“We’re going into where the students are – the campuses. Why Temasek Poly (TP)? It’s because from our past experiences, we know that TP has lots of good singers. We thought that we should come so that the students who are interested in singing and want to give it a shot will have a chance at their doorstep,” said vice-president of Chinese Entertainment Productions in Mediacorp, Elaine Lee.
Former Singapore Idol contestant and Sing! China finalist, Joanna Dong and Mediacorp artist Lee Teng were also present at the event, hosting mini lip-sync battles on a stage set up outside the school library to hype the energy level up.
The auditions at TP were well-received by students from other schools as well with many choosing to audition on the campus. Many were nervous but also felt that this was a great opportunity. They revealed that bringing the auditions to school campuses encouraged them to take part in the contest as well.
Ang Si Hui Pearlyn, a student studying Music and Audio Technology in Singapore Polytechnic, expressed: “I feel like it’s a very good way to promote the competition to students. They (Mediacorp) can open auditions and broadcast it on social media, but when they actually go down to the schools itself, more students will know about it.”
Katherine Palacio Benedicto, a freshman in the Business Studies Grouping here in TP, was excited when she found out that Mediacorp was coming down to TP. “I didn’t expect Mediacorp to come to TP personally to host this event. I feel like it’s a good way to encourage us to participate also,” she said.
Joanna Dong hopes that the participants will take home a positive experience. She is also filled with anticipation for what is in store for them.
“I hope that by bringing this music to the schools and to the various campuses, I can get the youthful students excited. Hopefully they will feel like, ‘Wow, if there are so many people who have gone before me to do this, then perhaps my dream isn’t such a crazy one, maybe it’s not such a far-off thing after all!’” Joanna Dong said, all smiles.
The auditions will be conducted throughout the month of June and can be viewed on toggle.sg, while the results of the top 20 will be released in mid-July and the programme will officially begin airing in September.