Aug 8, 2018

Why this year's National Day Parade (NDP) 2018 might just make you shed a tear (I did!)

We caught the National Day Parade (NDP) 2018 Preview I two weekends ago and my oh my, what a refreshing change from the usual NDP that we have grown accustomed to.

In fact, I have to say that this year's NDP probably ranks as one of my all-time favourites for a number of reasons.

I could talk about the part where the audience get to participate in the Placard Challenge.

Each member of the audience has a placard with a red and white side in the Funpack, with the white side allowing them to write what they stand for along the 'We Are Singapore' theme. Then, depending on where they are seated, they will display either the red or white side during the challenge which will form the words “We ❤ SG”.

As you can tell from the 'I AM GAINING WEIGHT' message scribbled on to one of the placards above, some are pretty witty in their responses. LOL.

Or I could talk about Naval Combat Divers who will for the first time conduct a freefall water jump into the Marina Bay to demonstrate their operational prowess.

Or I could talk about the Red Lions who will debut their new, customised wingsuits at this year's NDP.

Or I could talk about the spectacular RSAF aerial flypast which is done in celebration of its 50 years anniversary.

Or I could talk about the water procession of floats which have been modelled after old-school playgrounds like the Dragon, Dove and Pelican playgrounds.

Or I could talk about the glowing light balls which are in the Funpack and together, the blinking lights combined to form a sea of rainbow-coloured lights.

Or I could talk about the same old Fireworks that lit up the Marina Bay area in the finale.


Because for me, this year's NDP show segment was clearly the standout performance of the lot.

After all, there can only be so many times that one can retell the Singapore Story, or incorporate Sang Nila Utama or Sir Stamford Raffles into an NDP show. And cleverly enough, it steers clear from the usual over-the-top and stretchy sing and dance numbers.

Instead, it deftly uses a show film which is woven seamlessly into the mass display performances across the different Acts of the Show.

If you are watching the NDP from home, you can miss the the pre-parade segment, the parade & ceremony segment and even the aerial flypast but whatever you do, DO NOT miss the film which tells the real-life stories of five individuals:

- Mary Klass, a pioneering Olympian who represented Singapore in 1956
- Mashruddin Saharuddin, a visually-impaired busker who regularly performs with his son
- Cai Yinzhou, the founder of Geylang Adventures and Back Alley Barbers
- Yum Sum, a samsui woman who helped built up Singapore till the 1980s
- Veera Sekaran, the founder of Greenology

This year's show's Creative Director is Boo Junfeng who is an accomplished Singaporean filmmaker in his own right and his strength in story-telling clearly shows in the film. I will not give anything more away but let's just say it is extremely heartfelt and there were more than a few dry eyes in the audience during the show segment.

Some of the performances in the Show Acts are pretty eye-catching too. I think I speak for the monkies when I say these gravity-defying 12 helium-filled balloon garlands which sway hynotisingly with the music ranked as one of our faves!

But above all, I love how this year's show had cut out all the political rah-rah and propaganda and chose to show through the stories of the 5 Singaporeans that how the perseverance and determination of our people can triumph the challenges and adversities faced.

Embodied with the Singapore spirit, every Singaporean can achieve the extraordinary. Each of us have our own success story to tell, and it is not measured by how wealthy or how high our SES is.

We can be the change we want to see, in their lives and the lives of the people around us.


And I am proud to call Singapore my HOME.

Be sure to catch the LIVE telecast of NDP 2018 on TV or Toggle on National Day, 9 August! :)

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