This year’s Sing Jazz Festival kicked off with an impressive Gala Night at Marina Bay Sand’s Mastercard Theatre on the 5th of March 2015. The event was graced by Minister Lawrence Wong who presented the award to Melissa Tham, for Sing Jazz Emerging Jazz Vocalist of the Year.
Melissa performed one song, Detour, awing the crowd to a hushed silence. The hall roared with applause when she took her bow.
The emcee, Anita Kapoor, gleefully shared with the audience that there are no rules for the show; they are invited to kick off their shoes, dance around and just have fun.
The melting pot that is Richard Bona and his band, played an hour long show bringing the crowd to its feet. Bona was born in Jamaica and it is clear that his roots is a major influence in his writing and music. His music is a unique jazz fusion; one that will get anyone dancing and bopping along as it is truly infectious.
Ramsey Lewis, a Grammy-winning American jazz singer-songwriter with an astounding 80+ albums under his belt, is absolutely deserving of the SingJazz Legend of Jazz award. He was presented with this award by U.S. Ambassador, H.E. Kirk Wagar. Lewis exudes confidence in his calm presence and wise words.
Shortly after the award presentation, you can feel the room’s palpable excitement waiting for the final performance of the night. Walking onto the stage, Chaka Khan was all smiles. The songstress belted out popular hits such as Ain’t Nobody, Until You Come Back To Me and of course, Through The Fire. I find myself sitting down a total of one time during her entire performance and that was because I needed a sip of water after all that belting. One may be overwhelmed by her stage presence and powerhouse vocals, but once you get used to the idea that that is Chaka’s package, along with her backup singers, Chaka got the crowd dancing and singing all night long.
After Chaka, you know that this year’s Sing Jazz is going to be an amazing one. Stay tuned for our reviews on the rest of the nights of the festival!