This, made me feel very special.
10 bloggers were chosen as part of the NDP (National Day Parade) Engagement Team this year. After attending a cosy dinner with the ex-co and media events, finally came the day for us to go backstage! I had the backstage pass so I gave the pair of tickets to my parents who have never watched the NDP live. They were so happy! And that made me really happy! 😀
We could choose to watch the actual preview show which happened on 4 August, but I chose to go for the 28 July slot instead as backstage access was only for 28 July. It’s been my dream since young to see how the backstage of the parade looks like. I’d imagined it to be very messy yet not disorganized, very noisy yet not rowdy, very exciting yet not nerve wrecking, small yet cosy.
But no. The backstage arena was actually large and spacious, taking up multiple storeys of a building, performers were practising, some getting their makeup done, others getting last minute instructions, many resting and getting food and drinks. It was all very… tranquil. LOL. Very unlike my preconceived and unreliable notion about how the NDP backstage would appear to be.
And here's me at one of the backstage halls.
Participants rehearsing, getting their makeup done, chillin'~
Some had professional MUAs do their makeup...
... while others had to leave their fate in the hands of friends. 😀
Below, another makeup section where more detailed makeup was required. This was for a butterfly look and we were wondering why they chose guys instead of girls to be butterflies when Rachell told us it was coz the weight of the costume ensemble required a lot of strength.
If I could afford the time and was less distracted by the BIG GREEN THING in my peripheral view, I would have loved to sit among these butterflies and learn the tricks of stage makeup.
Reminds me of my geisha makeup look I did for Halloween in 2011. Maybe I should be a rotten butterfly for Halloween this year. Oh I don't know, I don't want to have trouble getting into a cab. My brother had to accompany me downstairs to flag for a cab and warn the driver beforehand not to be alarmed by his next passenger. LOL!
We were done with checking out the costume and makeup sections and were super excited to approach the BIG GREEN THING - Milo truck!! SO HAPPY!!! 😀 Every Singaporean kid has a special place in his/her heart for a Milo truck. It was the highlight of every sports day, every MacRitchie Reservoir run, every annual school carnival, basically, every school event. When a Milo truck came to NUS (National University of Singapore), my friends and I were ECSTATIC. Everyone queuing for a small cup of Milo was ECSTATIC. Suddenly, for that moment, we were all brought back to our childhood. ^_^*
I don't know if it's something only every Singaporean kid experiences. Do you have Milo trucks in your country?
Time to go from backstage to the spectators stand! Met up with Noel at the entrance.
It felt pretty awesome to avoid queuing and had a special lane moving up towards the stands just because I had a pass. Not that there was any queue at all, people were moving well, the ushers were great, and everything was orderly. That's Singapore for you. 🙂
This lion-predator-esque character made me LOL. He looked at me and then decided to do a back comb of his mane with his fingers (paws?). Super funny!!! 😆
And then it was time to join dad and mum! <3
The usher was holding a Smurfette balloon and I asked to take a picture with it. So cute right!
OMG I love my fringe. So glad I had a good fringe day. You can have a general good hair day but if your fringe wouldn't obey, the whole look would still look wonky.
Did you notice my dress has black and white stripes? And who else is perpetually dressed in a black and white dress? YES! BUN BUN!!! Lol! I really have plenty of black/white striped tops and dresses. Deeply attracted to them. Hoho.
And........the highlight of this NDP preview (for me, at least)!
I MET DR JIAJIA! 😀
If you don't already know, Dr JiaJia is a 7-year-old Singaporean who has attained superstardom with his YouTube videos that cover topics ranging from Singlish lessons to events happening in Singapore. He has touched the hearts and brightened the days of many with his antics, hilarious facial expressions, and infectious laughter.
JiaJia has dyslexia, but that doesn't stop him from trying his best in everything he does, from learning spelling to reciting his lines in the videos, all of which are lovingly put together by his father, whom we know as BigDad. It's his spirit that makes the videos even more endearing. He also has a very patient and encouraging brother, BigBro, who usually plays the more serious role in the videos. His younger sisters Hello Kitty and Pall Pall are slowing getting into the limelight too.
You should go check out their videos. I laugh like mad whenever I watch them, the NGs are especially entertaining, and the dynamics between brothers is brilliant.
This was the first video that I watched, and have been hooked since. I must have watched this at least 10 times, and laughed every single time.
Some of my favorites:
Singlish 26A: Char Kway Teow Uncle Meets Foreign Talent (The NGs are a killer! I laughed until I teared. Very rare for me)
This picture was taken by BigDad and uploaded onto Jiajia Bigbrother facebook page! I'm a fangirl =D
Alright, back to the show! And...... WE START!
Gone are the days where handheld flags were made of flimsy, easily crumpled plastic. The one included in the funpack is made of cloth, very good quality!
Everyone looking up into the sky, awaiting....
... the parachutes!
Remember in the previous NDP post I mentioned there'd by soldiers marching from the spectators stand? Like this:
Check out all those excited kids standing up to have a better view. =)
All military and uniformed groups congregating onto the platform Here comes the most interesting part of the show. I've never attended an NDP preview, only the live shows, so it was such an eye opener for me.
There were people holding boards to simulate the entrance of Minister of State (MOS),
Deputy Prime Minister (DPM), Chief Minister (CM), even Minister Mentor (MM).
The guy who acted as Mr Lee Kwan Yew did his part really well, walking slowly down the steps and holding onto the railing.
And this guy acted as our Prime Minister, Mr Lee Hsien Loong. The crowd burst out laughing (from surprise, not mockery) the moment he stepped out of the car smiling and waving.
I think they were told to expect laughter so they performed professionally despite the roars of laughter.
You acted very well, mister! *thumbs up 🙂
This year, my brother got to participate in the NDP too! I knew he was participating in NDP, but whenever I asked him which day would he be performing, he could not give an answer as he wasn't given instructions as well.
So it was such a coincidence that on the day I went backstage, he was there, but a great pity that we didn't know we'd both be there! So we missed the chance to meet backstage! Booooo!!
In fact, our entire family of 6 managed to, in different ways, participate in this NDP 2012. My youngest brother and sister got tickets from balloting for a different day, Jason performed, I got the pass and gave my parents the tickets.
And here comes the portion of the NDP show that my sister and I would come back to the TV again. We used to go take a bath, take a nap, or have dinner when the military drills came on. BAHAHA! We were very little and the whole uniformed group thing was such a bore to us.
The skies turned dark in a matter of minutes...
Dr JiaJia and BigBro had a clip but I can't remember what was their message. 😛 Too busy being happy to see their faces.
The NDP 2012 theme song, 'Love At First Light' is sung by Olivia Ong and Natanya Tan. I think the little girl is the actual singer while the lady is a stand-in for Olivia Ong.
Felt so touched to see the stage dotted with performers who have trained so hard, under Singapore's merciless sun, for countless afternoons to put together this show for the audience.
Not forgetting the crew of costumes and makeup artists, lighting crew, stage setup crew, sound crew, etc who made the whole experience so entertaining and engaging.
Then it was time for the singing of Majulah Singapura, our National Anthem. This year, Singapore's first ever virtual choir was created with videos of individuals singing the National Anthem.
HAHAHA! Yup, that's me!
This was recorded on the first NDP media event, at the recording booth. I don't know if it's because this was a preview, but it seems like there's not enough videos to go round therefore many of them appeared repeatedly. Mine appeared many, many times. Not that I'm complaining though. Hoho.
I hope it's just a preview of the grand compilation we would see on the actual day, 9 August 2012. I sent in all my family and friends videos but encountered problems with the uploading. On many occasions, the website did not indicate whether the video was successfully uploaded or not. I do hope they do it again next year, and make the uploading process more robust.
Min and I put together a short video of all my friends and family who answered to my call of making my own little version of the virtual choir. Min's comp has very little ram left, so the quality's not too good. Don't judge. HAHA!
(The YouTube play button is right smack on my face. HAHAHA!)
BIG THANK YOU to daddy, mummy, Jason, Edison, Min, Siew Ping, Andrew, Victor, Peizhi, Chern Hui, Shaun, Derick, Kelvin, Francine, Katie, Changyao, Yuwen, Weiguang, Altron, Qinyao, Adelyne, Serena, Weishen for being so ONZ for my video! ^_^*
After the NDP show, I had to immediately rush down for our flashmob rehearsal which happened the very next day at Orchard Road! Gonna do a post on that for sure! I'm still suffering from post-flashmob withdrawal. LOL.
In the meantime, here's a picture of my eye makeup look for that day.
Tutorial coming up okie? 😀
Life of a Bun: Instagram @bunbunmakeuptips
The mug's a present from Min for my 28th birthday. She likes to call me Juli Bun coz 'Bun' sounds a lot like my surname 'Phang' (pronounced without the 'h'). Check out the eye makeup tutorial for hooded eyelids I did on Min.
Thanks for reading! 😀
National Day falls on a Thursday this year. Have you applied for leave for Friday for a looong weekend ahead? And do you have Milo trucks in your country?
Just wanna immortalize this moment