We Are Singapore: Thanks To Them, Our Little Red Dot Is On The World Map!
ICYMI: COVID-19 is no longer just a pandemic, but an endemic disease aka it's here to stay.
But hey, we are Singapore. And we won't let this get in the way of our lives. Despite the ups and downs of living in the new normal, we Singaporeans continue to be driven by a can-do spirit, and some of us are even thriving despite these challenging circumstances.
In honour of National Day, a celebration of strength, confidence, resilience and pride in being Singaporean, we want to spotlight fellow Singaporeans who are putting our Little Red Dot on the world map:
Three individuals were recently given community awards in Auckland, New Zealand at a an annual ceremony held by Indian Newslink, an Auckland-based English-language publication: veteran media personalities Hayma Malini Radakrishna (left) and Yugendran Vasudevan (right), as well as Thamizhvanan Veshnu Narayanasamy (centre), an esteemed Indian classical dancer and recipient of the National Arts Council’s Young Artist Award in 1998.
Thamizhvanan Veshnu Narayanasamy
Who dat: This illustrious Indian classical dancer highly skilled in the traditional genres of Bharathanatyam and Odissi, has produced, choreographed and presented classical dance performances both in Singapore and abroad.
In 1998, Veshnu was one of the recipients of the National Arts Council's Young Artist Award, Singapore's highest award for young art practitioners (aged 35 years and below in the year of the award), whose artistic achievements and commitment have distinguished them among their peers.
He was also appointed Artist in Residence at the Stamford Arts Centre from late 2019 to early 2020.
He currently resides in: Auckland, New Zealand. Veshnu, who holds a Postgraduate Diploma and a Masters in Dance degree, headed to New Zealand to pursue a doctorate with the department of Anthropology at the University of Auckland and actively contributes his talent to the Auckland Tamil Association.
Waseh ups: On 2 Aug, he received the Indian Newslink Culture Award for Excellence in Indian Classical Dances at the Seventh Annual Indian Newslink Sports, Community, Arts and Culture Awards in Auckland, New Zealand.
A fitting recognition for Veshnu, who established the Sri Vidya Laya Foundation in Auckland, New Zealand (a non-profit performing arts organisation) that provides training in Odissi, Bharathanatyam and creative dance movements.
He's also been a cultural ambassador for the Singapore Tourist Promotion Board, showcasing Singapore's multicultural identity to various countries.
Yugendran Vasudevan (left) and Hayma Malini Radakrishna
Who dem: Talk about a power couple - Hayma and Yugendran are veterans in the media and entertainment industry in Singapore.
Hayma is a veteran anchor who's hosted several shows on Vasantham, and has won numerous Pradhana Vizha awards. Husband Yugendran is a singer and musician, and, most famously, the son of the legendary Tamil singer, "Malaysia" Vasudevan.
The couple started out in New Zealand by organising and participating in Tamil community events (such as confidence pageants and dance showcases) and working with recognised organisations like the Auckland Tamil Association.
They currently reside in: Auckland, New Zealand. Hayma is a PhD candidate at the Auckland University of Technology. Yugendran and their three sons moved to New Zealand with her after she received a scholarship to attain a doctorate.
Waseh ups: Alongside eminent dancer Veshnu, the duo were also award winners at the Seventh Annual Indian Newslink Sports, Community, Arts and Culture Awards in Auckland, New Zealand held on 2 Aug.
Hayma and Yugendran also own and run Rambutan Media Works, a production company that has produced media and entertainment works for Vasantham in Singapore as well as community events in New Zealand.
They too have put Singapore on the world map recently
Tap the image above, or click here to find out more about the global achievements of entrepreneur Keith Tan, chef Kenneth Foong, and freelance writer and photographer Prashant Ashoka. Think robot baristas, leading a world-renowned restaurant, and building a home atop an extinct volcano.
And the list goes on: Chef Mathew Leong, equestrienne Caroline Chew and Kollywood star Shabir have flown the Singapore flag high with their impressive successes overseas. Who else can secure a spot to compete in the biennial Bocuse d'Or in France, make Singapore's equestrian debut at the Olympics, and take over the airwaves in India?
Tap the image above or click here to find out more about designer Alexandra Beggs, entrepreneurs Mohamed Afiq, Ng Jun Kai, and Nathaniel Yim, and football star Yasmin Namira.
Sibei tokong! Can helm a design studio with a global clientele, co-found a local startup that ships to the whole of South-east Asia, and win a 4-year football scholarship scheme to Iowa's Graceland University.