By the time I heard about this concert over FM97.2, the tickets had already been selling for a few months. A quick check among my friends got a full attendance and all agreed for the lowest price tickets. I remember a 重逢 concert where we were seated three to four storey high and was resigned for the same this time. Fortunately The Star Theatre was a wonderful venue with none of the restricted view that Esplanade subject cheap ticket holders to. The seats were wide apart with plenty of leg rooms, and even though we were high up, we did not feel detached from the performance. If there was a complaint, it was the harsh lighting that prevented a clear close-up of the performance on the screen.
As we were warned by SISTIC about the limited parking at the venue, many of my friends chose to take MRT, forgetting that the concert may end late. In the end, the four-hour concert left many of them without a ride home and had to rely on taxis and lifts from kind-hearted friends like me. Still, that did not dampen the night, for even before I got home, I received two text messages about booking for next year’s concert.
The concert started just before 8pm with a video introduction by DJ Zi Hui on how the 新谣 movement began, effectively from her when she gave airway time to the students to perform their compositions.
TCR Music, the producer of the concert had painstakingly contacted many and probably had a hard time persuading them to take the stage. It was heartwarming seeing middle-aged people crooning one after another, with photos of their younger performing days flashing behind 0n screen. The dates of the photos, ranging in the mid-to late 80s reminded me of my own youth. I was busy studying at NUS while they were pursuing their passions.
There were some unfamiliar faces but they were still accorded enthusiastic applause when we heard the familiar tunes. We (nine of us there) each had our favourite and technically mine was not from the 新谣 era. 苏心荃 brushed me twice outside the theatre and I did not even spot him, and all I had of him that night was a far-away glimpse of one beautiful rendition of 夢湖 (Thanks Susanna for correction below!) Sigh….
Some of the highlights of the performance for me were by 姜鄠 (恋之憩) and 颜黎明. 黎沸挥 provided much laughs as he bantered with a video recording of Eric Moo, who sent his apologies as he was holding a concert in KL. Still, Eric Moo’s presence was deeply missed as he led the audience to a mass singing of 邂逅. 苏智诚 (from Mediacorp), ex-member of 梦飞船 also provided much comic act.
There were a few wishes fulfilled that night. Mavis Koh (许美静) for Mike, singing 城里的月光. She appeared in drab as usual. She should seriously consider changing her stylist.
Special overseas guest start齐豫 brought much joy to my group. My friend Pearly literally jumped up with joy when her vocal plea of 船歌 was answered.
The rest of the performers were 潘盈, 洪劭轩, 邓淑娴, 蔡荣祖, 蔡礼莲, 王邦吉 , 黄秀玲, 刘瑞政 控制塔小组, 林倛玉, 刘晋旭, 清泉小组, 钟添飞 鱼尾狮小组. We learned some of them are siblings and there was even a husband and wife pair.
The finale was helmed by 梁文福, who obliged by singing a few of his own compositions.
We were impressed by many of the singers, whose voices were unique and still great. Many also developed into song writers highly sought by overseas popular artists like A-mei and Jacky Cheung (林倛玉 being one).
It was a memorable evening and made even more enjoyable when experienced with a group of close friends.
(PS: read the comments from the performers below!)