Singapore National Day is celebrated August 9. That is the day in 1965 when Singapore split from Malaysia to became an independent country.
Each year the citizens hold a grand celebration,held at Marina Bay, the water surrounded by the symbols of Singapore: the 3-towered Marina Bay Sands complex, the historic Fullerton Hotel, the Esplanade Concert Hall, the sky-scraping bank buildings and the iconic Merlion Fountain. (that funny-shaped metal roof under the water stream is the Esplanade)
There is a floating platform that faces a grandstand (not far from the Formula One Grandstand) where local groups will perform well-rehearsed song and dance numbers that celebrate the heritage of Singapore.
Similar to Macys Thanksgiving Day parade, groups rehearse for months before National Day. On Saturdays through the summer months, dress rehearsals are held at the venue.
Sitting in our high-rise apartment on Saturday afternoons, the sound of helicopters alerts us to look out the windows. Here is what we see:
They take the flag down the path of the river, fly over the bay and out to sea:
Last Saturday after the flag reminded us of the rehearsal, we hopped in the car and went down to the Bay to see if we could catch some of the fun. After parking we followed the stream of like-minded residents and found a spot on the crowded Esplanade sea wall. Groups were rehearsing at the floating platform but it was barricaded so we could only hear/see from afar. Until the fireworks started. We had front row spots!
Behind us at the outdoor Esplanade stage, a jazz group was performing. (I know there are rules about videotaping music, but I don't even know the group's name...sorry) Here is a sample of the great music we got to hear!
Another fun night in Singapore!