After two years of virtual Christmas celebrations over Zoom, 80 Alumni Sing-Along (ASA) members and guests were delighted to meet in person to feast on traditional Christmas roast, turkey and log cakes; and sing, dance and perform live at Coriander, Shaw Foundation Alumni House (SFAH) on 12 December 2022.
Almost all active ASA members enthusiastically stepped forward to bring festive cheer to fellow members and guests with their renditions of familiar Christmas songs. Besides singing carols, ASA members dressed in the traditional Christmas red, green and white with matching scarfs, and performed a lively line dance to the tune of White Christmas. Choreographed and ably led by ASA member Lim Chee Kiang (Engineering ‘83), the ASA dancers confidently pirouetted in front of the many distinguished guests.
ASA Christmas Celebrations are usually magical – the Christmas songs of peace and goodwill, congenial fellowship and a subsidised, generous Christmas buffet spread. Yet the real magical touch that afternoon was in the hands of ASA member Roger Lim (Arts and Social Sciences ’75) who thrilled the audience by turning ketchup (not water) into wine!
Joanna Loo (Science ’71), chairperson ASA, kicked off the celebrations with her very encouraging and warm welcoming address, which revealed some enticing glimpses of the performances. But most of all, she was delighted to welcome two special guests, Johnny Tan (Science ’82), Co-Chairperson of the Alumni Advisory Board, and Bernard Toh (Architecture ’84), NUS Director of the Office of Alumni Relations.
Bernard Toh, in his opening address, announced that the various Alumni groups were now welcome to use the SFAH rooms and facilities gratis 12 times a year starting 2023. In addition, ASA members would be able to sing and play music to their hearts’ content in Sage, a soundproof room on the ground level. He shared that NUS and by extension, OAR, should not only be a house but a home for the NUS community. The remark was enthusiastically received by ASA members with cheers.
Following his speech, Joanna, Wee Bin (Arts and Social Science ’85) and Su Allin (Engineering ’73) on keyboard, filled Coriander with the joyful spirit of Christmas with the opening Christmas song, “Joy to The World”.
There were altogether a whopping 22 items put up by ASA members and guest musicians from Music Theatre Limited (MTL), led by Dezz Moey (Engineering ’84) who sang his recent jazz composition, “Let Me Say Goodbye”.
Guitarists Clarence (Arts and Social Sciences ’78), Robin (Science ’91) and Thim wrapped up the ASA Christmas Celebrations with the rousing “Feliz Navidad” and “We Wish You a Merry Christmas”. The two final Christmas songs had everyone on the floor dancing and exchanging good wishes for Christmas and the new year.
Submitted by Clarence Lim Soo Hwee (Arts and Social Sciences ’78)