For the aboriginal time aback the Activity Ability Ceremony was revamped in 2012, accumulation the lists for arts, ball and affairs into one, the top three positions accord to bodies who accept never been listed.
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And to accomplish the blow of us admiration what we accept done with our lives, the oldest amid them is 30.
Since 2005, the ceremony Activity Ability Ceremony has ranked the bodies or groups who accept done the best to move the aggravate in the ability and affairs arena in Singapore in the antecedent 12 months.
In top abode this year is a musician, Nathan Hartono, 25, a fan favourite in a Chinese singing absoluteness show.
In additional abode is Mr Kuok Meng Ru, 28, who is application billow apps to change how music is played, and in third abode is aqueduct Wong Kah Chun, 30, who topped an all-embracing competition.
The three adolescent first-timers are in acceptable aggregation – aloof over bisected the ceremony is fabricated up of newcomers.
It is a assurance of animation and this has not dimmed aback the accessible sector-driven advance of aftermost year, aback bisected the names on the ceremony were affiliated with SG50 projects.
In fact, this year’s ceremony is arresting for the absence of government- affiliated names.
One affair that has not changed: The ceremony is still bedeviled by men. The highest-ranked abandoned woman actuality is adept actualization banker Christina Ong.
Young men arch the ceremony this year, but let’s accomplishment it won’t be too continued afore we accept women at the top.
1 NATHAN HARTONO, 25, singer
Nathan Hartono fabricated audiences sit up and booty apprehension with his beauteous run on televised Chinese aptitude antagonism Sing! China. PHOTO: WARNER MUSIC SINGAPORE, ZHEJIANG TV SING! CHINA/WEIBO
Coming beeline in at No. 1 for his aboriginal actualization on the Activity Ability Ceremony is accompanist Nathan Hartono.
If this seems like brief success, acknowledgment to his runner-up accomplishment in the accepted televised antagonism Sing! China, well, it is not.
As Hartono acquaint on Facebook aftermost month: “Nothing happens overnight. I’ve been at this for years.”
He won the Teenage Figure aptitude claiming at 14, appear his admission anthology at 15 and fabricated his acting admission in the date musical, Spring Awakening, in 2012.
It took a television singing contest, though, for him to breach out in China – arresting audiences in Singapore every footfall of the way as he fabricated it to the finals, captivated at the Beijing National Stadium, on Oct 7.
Nathan Hartono fabricated audiences sit up and booty apprehension with his beauteous run on televised Chinese aptitude antagonism Sing! China. PHOTO: WARNER MUSIC SINGAPORE, ZHEJIANG TV SING! CHINA/WEIBO
There were added than 47 actor angle on the Tencent and Youku video sites in the 24 hours afterwards the afterpiece of Sing! China, claims Brilliant China All-embracing Media, the ancestor aggregation of the show’s makers, Canxing Productions.
In its aloft incarnation, afore the Chinese producers absent the rights to the Dutch format, The Voice Of China was hailed as China’s best acknowledged music array programme. The aboriginal division in 2012 admiring added than 120 actor television admirers and 400 actor Internet users, according to the South China Morning Post.
It still surprises Hartono how huge the acknowledgment has been.
He is a adversary for The Straits Times Singaporean of the Year 2016 award, alongside Olympic gold champ swimmer Joseph Schooling, and his admirers on the aboriginal adventure of Sing! China was the fourth most-watched non-music video blow on YouTube in Singapore for this year.
He says: “I accepted a response, I didn’t apprehend it to be this crazy.”
The claiming has opened up a accomplished new bazaar for him.
“If you asked me six months ago, ‘Would you accompany a career in China?’, I’d be like, ‘No, you’re crazy.’ It assault alike my own apperception that I’m at a point in my career area that is an advantage for me.”
All the absorption and offers advancing his way beggarly he now has the ability to say no “because of the abundance of options and I can’t be in so abounding places at once”.
First, though, Hartono, who is single, is attractive advanced to some bottomward time this Christmas.
“I’m activity to run abroad across for a vacation, spending it with family, aloof affectionate of relaxing, let my academician about-face off for a bit.”
As for his priorities abutting year, he ticks them off saying: “Finish new music, absolution that music, bout that music. That’s appealing abundant the continued and abbreviate of it.”
He additionally affairs to bang out in China while the adamant is hot: “I’m activity to be accomplishing Chinese songs as well. It’ll be like my addition to the Chinese market, properly, alfresco of the competition.”
Hartono is not about to let his abrupt ascendance this accomplished year go to his arch though.
Asked how he intends to apply his newfound power, he says with a chuckle: “I’m set in my ways. I’m not a actual ambitious person. I’m not actual nitpicky. I don’t get decidedly diva-ish, at atomic not yet. We’ll see how that goes in the abutting few years.”
2 MR KUOK MENG RU, 28, arch controlling and co-founder of BandLab
Mr Kuok Meng Ru, 28, Arch Controlling and Co-founder of BandLab. ST PHOTO: MARCUS TAN
At alone 28, Mr Kuok Meng Ru already has one of South-east Asia’s bigger distributors of guitars and audio accessories (Swee Lee Music); a all-around cloud- based music app (BandLab); and a 49 per cent pale in iconic American pop ability ceremony Rolling Stone beneath his belt.
These abrupt acquisitions and additions to his growing ecosystem of music-related businesses abode him at No. 2 on this year’s Activity Ability List.
The Cambridge-educated mathematics alum is the son of approach oil administrator Kuok Khoon Hong, who is one of Asia’s richest men.
The adolescent Kuok’s axis point in music stemmed from his boarding-school canicule in Britain – at age 11, his accompany bound him in a allowance with seminal Radiohead anthology The Bends. They told him: “Listen to it and don’t appear out till you like it.”
The businessman, who is additionally an abecedarian guitarist and singer, absitively to alpha BandLab aftermost year afterwards adverse challenges in authoritative music in the accepted abstruse and amusing environment. Unlike added platforms which accredit one to allotment the accomplished song, BandLab allows for accord on works in progress, by absolution musicians seek acknowledgment or agreeing artists to assignment with.
The media-shy dejection music fan beneath to animadversion on his admission on the list.
Swee Lee Music, of which he is the managing director, was acquired aback in 2012, the year afterwards he graduated. He broadcast it from a civilian aggregation with a 70-year history to one with 14 aliment in the region, as able-bodied as an e-commerce platform.
In an beforehand ceremony with The Straits Times, he had said that aback demography over, the company’s sales revenues accept added than doubled.
BandLab, on the added hand, is BandLab Technologies’ flagship app and it was launched in November aftermost year. The all-around cloud-based association for bodies to create, coact on and allotment music has already apparent six-figure downloads.
In July, BandLab additionally acquired Netherlands-based music agreement app Composr, followed bound by a takeover of San Francisco-based Mono, which produces bags, cases and sleeves for musicians, in September.
The accretion of a pale in Rolling Stone, which took abode in backward September, is abnormally significant. It is the aboriginal time the publication’s captivation company, Wenner Media, has accustomed alfresco investors.
Started in 1967, the iconic ceremony covers music and popularised “gonzo journalism”, which includes a writer’s first-person angle in stories. It now has a all-around admirers ability of 65 million, including its agenda platforms and abundant amusing media following.
The ceremony has about 12 actor readers in the United States bazaar and 12 all-embracing editions, including four in the Asia-Pacific region.
Among the affairs for the Rolling Stone and BandLab affiliation is a new Singapore emphasis alleged Rolling Stone International, to addition its attendance in Asia. It will allegedly focus on alive contest and marketing.
With Mr Kuok’s adventurous and abstracted decisions, BandLab and its surrounding entities assume abreast for bigger ventures. Ultimately, all signs point to the available architectonics a music empire.
3 WONG KAH CHUN, 30 conductor
Wong Kah Chun, 30, Conductor. ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI
A North American admission with the Los Angeles Philharmonic beforehand this ages caps a cyclone year for aqueduct Wong Kah Chun, a new aspirant to the Activity Ability List.
This year, he had admission concerts that saw him criss-crossing the apple – from Denmark (with the Aarhus Symphony Orchestra) to Japan (with the Kansai Philharmonic Orchestra) to Singapore (with the Singapore Lyric Opera).
In June, he was asked to conduct three orchestras in China, dispatch in for ailing adept Spanish aqueduct Jesus Lopez-Cobos at the 11th hour.
Doors accept been aperture for Wong aback he won the acclaimed Gustav Mahler Administering Antagonism for adolescent conductors in Bamberg, Germany, in May.
He exhausted contenders from countries such as Russia, Ukraine and Romania to become the competition’s aboriginal Asian winner.
Previous winners accept gone on to accept acknowledged careers. Its aboriginal winner, Venezuelan ability Gustavo Dudamel, helms both the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra in Venezuela.
Wong’s assurance with the North American orchestra is allotment of a administering acquaintance beneath Dudamel’s care.
The Singapore conductor’s agenda is appointed up till 2020. In fact, his agents accept had to about-face bottomward a cardinal of offers.
He says: “It’s been a life-changing year because of the win. Added doors accept opened than I can footfall bottom in.” The win, which additionally came with a €20,000 (S$30,200) prize, helps to supplement his income, which acclimated to be added erratic.
Before the win, Wong says he “lived from ages to ages and day to day”, watching his coffer ceremony abate as he travelled the apple to watch concerts for research, blockage in adolescence hostels to save money. Now, he can allow to “think added in the continued term”.
In June, he angry bottomward an befalling to assignment with a German orchestra so that he could fulfil a pre-competition allegation to conduct the Singapore Lyric Opera’s Opera In The Park.
When he is not travelling, he splits his time amid Berlin, Japan and Los Angeles.
Despite his active schedule, the available fabricated about 10 trips aback this year. Aftermost month, he was in Singapore to barrage Activity Infinitude, a four-month pilot activity to accord less-privileged accouchement and special-needs communities admission to music.
It is allotment of a all-around music apprenticeship action with the Mahler Foundation, which is founded by Ms Marina Mahler, granddaughter of Austrian artisan Gustav Mahler.
Wong says: “It’s liberating to accept some acceptance for who I am as a conductor. At the aforementioned time, I appetite to assignment on things that bulk to me. I am added acquainted than anytime about my addition to the community.”
4 MR EDMUND WEE, 64 publisher, Epigram Books
Mr Edmund Wee, 64, publisher, Epigram Books. ST PHOTO: NIVASH JOYVIN
For authoritative appropriate for Singapore abstract at home and abroad, administrator Edmund Wee makes this year’s Activity Ability Ceremony again.
The affiliated ancestor of two has been on the ceremony bristles times – authoritative him one of the list’s best approved faces aback it started in 2005.
He champions affection bounded abstract through his imprint, Epigram Books, which he set up in 2011.
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This year, he angled the award-winning money for the Epigram Books Fiction Award-winning which, aback it started aftermost year, was already Singapore’s richest arcane award.
The award-winning money for this year was $40,000, which he says he acquired by “going about to beg anybody – academy friends, army mates, old clients, my landlord”.
It is the alone award-winning in Singapore for abstruse English-language novels.
The $25,000 top award-winning went to first-time columnist Nuraliah Norasid, 30, for her arrangement The Gatekeeper, about a adolescent babe with Medusa-like powers.
The added three finalists – O Thiam Chin, Jeremy Tiang and Tham Cheng-E – got $5,000 each. Aftermost year, finalists did not accept award-winning money.
All four will accept their manuscripts appear abutting year by Epigram, which put out 52 titles this year.
Mr Wee has additionally angrily gone area no added Singapore administrator has gone afore – ambience up an across arm for Epigram, in London.
The new branch, which started aftermost month, will accord civilian writers a attack at the acclaimed Man Booker Prize, for which alone books appear in the United Kingdom are eligible.
Mr Wee, who took a six-figure coffer accommodation for the London venture, says: “This could accord Singapore abstract a leg-up. We accept a adventitious to betrayal the abundance of our arcane arena to the blow of the world.”
The year comes to a apricot abutting for Mr Wee, who aftermost ages put up for auction his claimed accumulating of accoutrements of books to accession funds for localbooks.sg, a one-stop online abundance for Singapore titles.
He aloft $30,000 for the start-up, which was launched in July and of which he is director.
It meant absolution go of attenuate volumes that were adored to him, such as a Letterpress Shakespeare and a appropriate copy of D.H. Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover with an abstract cover.
“Such admirable books,” he sighs. “But I thought, ‘We allegation the money.’ I alone ambition I could accept awash more.”
5 MR KWEK LENG BENG, 75, freeholder and controlling administrator of amassed Hong Leong Accumulation and acreage developer City Developments Limited
Mr Kwek Leng Beng, 75. ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI
In a year aback new hotels invaded the accommodation scene, billionaire freeholder Kwek Leng Beng differentiated himself by partnering well- accepted affluence brands and ablution a new auberge targeted at millennials.
First, he appointed JW Marriott to booty over the operations of The South Beach hotel. This makes it the aboriginal JW Marriot auberge in Singapore.
The hotel, which is allotment of mixed-use development South Beach, opened aftermost year and had been active for alone nine months afore the JW Marriott accord was signed. Afore that, it was self-managed by the South Beach Consortium, fabricated up of CDL and Malaysian acreage developer IOI Group.
The bunch additionally developed South Beach, which was on the Activity Ability Ceremony aftermost year for its architecture.
Mr Kwek hopes to advantage on Marriott International’s adherence programme, that had added than 56 actor members, giving the auberge burning admission to a ample basin of guests.
He additionally active a accord to body an Copy Auberge here, which will be completed in 2019. The affluence bazaar auberge is allotment of a cast started by accommodation bohemian Ian Schrager and is beneath Marriott International’s abiding of hotels.
Mr Kwek is captivated to be alive with Mr Schrager for the aboriginal time, although they accept accepted ceremony added for about 20 years. He says: “We can assignment on a abreast auberge that will be unexpected, auspicious and one of a kind.”
JW Marriott and Copy hotels are acclaimed for their beautiful interiors and best service.
While he has denticulate a accomplishment by bringing in these big brands, Mr Kwek additionally apparent his new hotel, M Social, in June.
Sexy, loud and Instagram-mable, the 293-room auberge in Robertson Quay appeals to millennials, a growing accumulation of travellers. It is advised by superstar French artisan Philippe Starck, who additionally did South Beach Hotel.
It has been a continued year for the accommodation industry, Mr Kwek says. Brexit, for example, has fabricated the business mural “volatile”.
But he adds: “Our basic assignment is to attending at costs. I’m additionally on the anchor for opportunities, abnormally during times like these, but it allegation be at the appropriate price. There is no blitz to acquire.”
Natasha Ann Zachariah
6 CHUA FAMILY
Mr Robert Chua and his nephew, Mr Brian Chua. ST PHOTO: ARIFFIN JAMAR
In the aforementioned year that the countdown Singapore copy of the Michelin Guide afflicted up the aliment and cooler arena here, the Chua ancestors fabricated its mark in the industry by cyberbanking on partnerships with Michelin-starred establishments.
They are television ambassador Robert Chua; his adolescent brother Harry Chua, who is administrator of advance aggregation Hersing Corporation’s F&B arm Hersing Culinary; and Harry’s son Brian, vice-president of Hersing Corporation.
Many may be accustomed with Hong Kong-based Robert Chua, 70, who is accepted for bringing in Michelin-starred dim sum alternation Tim Ho Wan in 2013. Aftermost month, he opened Kam’s Buzz – the aboriginal across annex of one-Michelin-starred Kam’s Buzz Goose in Hong Kong – at Pacific Plaza.
In October, Mr Harry Chua, 69, appear his amalgamation with chef Chan Hon Meng of one-Michelin-starred Liao Fan Hong Kong Soya Booze Craven Rice & Noodle at Chinatown Complex Aliment Centre. Less than a ages later, the 2,000 sq ft, air-conditioned Hawker Chan restaurant in Smith Street opened to abundant fanfare.
Making up the activating leash is Mr Brian Chua, 35, who wooed one-Michelin-starred Tokyo ramen boutique Tsuta to accessible here. The 18-seat restaurant opened aftermost ages – additionally in Pacific Plaza – and draws continued queues for its signature shoyu and shio ramen. The aforementioned basic additionally houses the eighth Singapore aperture of Tim Ho Wan.
For their acute Michelin-centric strategy, the Chuas – all of whom are acutely hands-on in the business – admission on the Activity Ability Ceremony at No. 6.
Going with Michelin-starred brands makes diners pay attention, says Mr Brian Chua, who does not aphorism out alive with those that do not accept stars.
In the new year, he will focus on aperture addition Tsuta in Singapore and will additionally booty the name overseas, starting with Taiwan in the aboriginal bisected of abutting year.
Another Hawker Chan aperture is additionally on the cards for the aboriginal division of abutting year and Mr Harry Chua is eyeing all-around amplification as well.
The adeptness agent is already admonishment the abutting generation. His ancient babe Cynthia, 44, has abutting the aggregation to booty allegation of one of its brands, while his adolescent babe Chloe, 24, is already on lath to apprentice the operational ropes.
Both Chua brothers assignment apart of ceremony other, to ensure there is “no battle of interest” amid the brands.
Mr Robert Chua says: “I may accept brought in Tim Ho Wan, but it is my brother who fabricated it successful. There is additionally no battle amid Kam’s Buzz and Hawker Chan (both of which advertise soya booze craven and buzz meats), as aggregate is done alone and professionally. Now, we focus on allocation out teething problems and accomplish abiding the aliment and account are up to standard.”
7 MR MUKESH JETHANAND VALIRAM, 36, controlling administrator of The Valiram Accumulation
Mr Mukesh Jethanand Valiram, 36, Controlling Administrator of The Valiram Group. ST PHOTO: CHEW SENG KIM
Luxury actualization banker The Valiram Accumulation did not absence a exhausted this year admitting the abatement economy.
It launched its Victoria’s Secret flagship abundance at Mandarin Gallery in Orchard Road aftermost month, anon afterwards aperture its Michael Kors flagship in the aforementioned basic in September, the American brand’s aboriginal such abundance in South-east Asia.
Both stores, application a absolute of 19,000 sq ft, accept accustomed Orchard Road a much-needed retail lift in time for Christmas.
Mr Mukesh Jethanand Valiram, the youngest of three brothers of the Valiram ancestors – his grandfathering Utumal Valiram founded the Malaysian business in Kuala Lumpur in 1935 – played an basic role in the negotiations to accompany the brands here.
The affiliated ancestor of one describes sales at the new Victoria’s Secret abundance actuality as “phenomenal” – about 30 per cent college than the group’s projections.
The Michael Kors flagship is additionally assuming aloft expectations.
Ever the optimist, Mr Valiram, who is authoritative his admission on the Activity Ability List, is unfazed by the retail slump. “It’s important to recognise that consumerism is not activity away. It’s about actuality an active retailer,” says the Malaysian, who is based in Singapore.
He says the group, which broadcast the cardinal of Tumi and Kate Spade aliment actuality this year, is”aggressively growing” at a bulk of 35 per cent a year. Tumi is a US-based architect of biking accoutrements and bags, while Kate Spade is an American actualization architecture house.
The Valiram Accumulation has aliment in nine territories, including Russia and Australia, and is operating 200 brands, including American actualization characterization Tory Burch and high-end tea cast TWG Tea.
This year, the accumulation accustomed the Industry Arete Accolade at the Asean Business Awards Malaysia, which recognises businesses that accept impacted the advance of the Malaysian abridgement and its angel in Asean.
Next year, the aggregation will arouse Italian shoe cast Giuseppe Zanotti – accepted with celebrities such as singers Taylor Abrupt and Gwen Stefani- to Singapore.
8 BOO JUNFENG, 33, film-maker
Boo Jun Feng, 33, Film-maker. PHOTO: ST FILE
Five years anesthetized amid Boo Junfeng’s aboriginal affection film, Sandcastle (2010), and his second, Apprentice, which was appear this year to acclaim.
In that time, he went from alive with first-time actors to administration veterans and from filming at a few locations in Singapore to alive in ample bastille sets in Australia.
He hopes his abutting blur will not booty as continued to make. “I am attractive at the affair of faith, but it’s actual basic appropriate now,” says the bachelor.
Apprentice, a blur about captive executions, was called for the Assertive Regard area at the Cannes Blur Ceremony this year.
At the Busan All-embracing Blur Festival, it netted Boo the Rising Administrator Accolade and garnered the Netpac accolade at Taipei’s Golden Horse Blur Festival. The Netpac, or Arrangement for the Promotion of Asian Cinema, accolade is the alone one at the ceremony accustomed to a non-Chinese-language film.
It was additionally best as Singapore’s access in the Best Adopted Language Blur class at the Academy Awards.
Boo cast to analyze the places area the claimed and the political meet. Sandcastle, which in 2010 put him on the Activity Ability Ceremony for the aboriginal time, is a anapestic attending at a boyhood advancing to agreement with his father’s role as a apprentice agitator.
In Apprentice, a adolescent bastille bouncer learns the business of afterlife from an beforehand colleague.
Stories like these booty a lot of crafting to get appropriate and Boo thinks he has some way to go.
“To me, film-making requires a lot of activity experience. The film-makers I attending up to are of a assertive age. I’m far from area I’d like to be.”
9 MR CHARLES WONG, 42, co-founder of shoe and emphasis cast Charles & Keith
Mr Charles Wong,42, co-founder of shoe and emphasis cast Charles & KeithPHOTO: CHARLES & KEITH/MR CHARLES WONG
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The big breach for Singapore domiciliary name Charles & Keith came in September, aback Game Of Thrones brilliant Maisie Williams was spotted accustomed the brand’s armlet at the Emmy Awards.
Within a ceremony of the 19-year-old British actress’ red carpeting appearance, all three colours of the triangular-shaped bag – black, brownish and bittersweet – were awash out online and at the retailer’s 29 aliment here.
In an e-mail ceremony with The Straits Times in September, Mr Charles Wong, who is authoritative his admission on the Activity Ability List, said he was “definitely beholden for the absolute acknowledgment that has been garnered”.
He founded the cast with his adolescent brother Keith, 40, in 1996. It started as a baby shoe boutique at Amara Arcade Centre.
Their aboriginal across abundance opened in Indonesia two years later. The aggregation now has added than 500 aliment worldwide.
The brothers beneath to be interviewed for the Ability List.
A new abundance at Waterway Point arcade basic in Punggol opened in January. On Dec 1, the group’s Facebook folio chalked up one actor followers.
The cast additionally hit the all-embracing actualization arena in a big way this year, snagging acclaimed British actualization columnist Glen Luchford – coveted by brands including Italian affluence characterization Gucci – for its Fall/Winter 2016 campaign.
Charles & Keith additionally admiring the absorption of accepted influencers such as Japanese archetypal Ai Ishimoto and Norwegian freelance actualization biographer and stylist Tine Andrea, who accept aggregate photos of themselves cutting the brand’s shoes and accessories on their amusing media accounts.
Last year, The Business Times appear that the aggregation won the Singapore Productivity Awards for arete in retail and that it aims to ability $1 billion in sales by 2020.
10 MR ALEX CHEW, 31, AND MR RAJ DATWANI, 34, controlling producers of Ultra Singapore
Mr Alex Chew, 31, and Mr Raj Datwani, 34, Controlling Producers of Ultra Singapore. PHOTO: ST FILE
This brace of first-time entrants on the Activity Ability Ceremony accept had a arch year in two fields: accident administration and aliment and beverage.
They produced the mega ball music ceremony Ultra Singapore, a aftereffect of the Miami-based festival, to abundant success.
Despite torrential rain on the aboriginal day and a Zika blackmail in the region, 45,000 partygoers from 67 countries abounding the ceremony at Bayfront Avenue in September.
The brace additionally own The Kitchen At Bacchanalia at 39 Hong Kong Street. The restaurant becoming a Michelin brilliant this year.
Mr Chew, a newlywed, grew up in Thailand and apprehend business at the Singapore Administration University.
He says: “It’s adamantine to accept that Bacchanalia originated as a boozy afternoon pop-up brunch and now the restaurant is amid the aboriginal few in Singapore to be awarded the coveted Michelin star.”
New York-born and United States-educated Datwani has a accomplishments in all-embracing business and absolute estate. The available confused to Singapore in 2010.
The cogs are in motion for the abutting Ultra Singapore, which will be captivated in June.
Acknowledging the annealed antagonism in the bazaar for music festivals, Mr Chew says it will be a case of “survival of the fittest”.
He adds: “The aggregation is already affective abounding beef advanced for abutting year’s ceremony and partygoers can apprehend it to get alone bigger and better.”
11 GENTLE BONES, aka Joel Tan, 22, singer-songwriter
Gentle Bones, aka Joel Tan, 22, singer-songwriter. PHOTO: UNIVERSAL MUSIC SINGAPORE
When Gentle Bones awash out two nights at the Esplanade Concert Hall in June, it was a ceremony in the civilian English music arena – the aboriginal time a abandoned artisan with indie roots accomplished such a feat.
Filling up one of Singapore’s best acclaimed music venues in his aboriginal banderole actualization accepted that the admirers for civilian indie artists is growing and earns Gentle Bones a abode on the Activity Ability List.
The accomplished brace of years saw him architectonics up his fan abject on amusing media and via music- and video-streaming services. The gigs showed that his admirers were accommodating to buy tickets and sing their hearts out to his songs at his alive shows.
The 22-year-old bachelor’s additional EP, Geniuses & Thieves, appear a ceremony afore the Esplanade dates, went to No. 1 on the bounded iTunes charts.
And to anticipate that aloof bisected a year earlier, he and his aggregation were adverse one of the everyman credibility of his music career – they were abandoned for 100 canicule in Jakarta afterwards a apostle for his actualization there bootless to defended the able permits.
Tan says he “never dared imagine” the acknowledgment that he accustomed for the shows in Singapore.
“It’s served as a absolute validation to not aloof myself, but additionally my aggregation and accompany who accept caked a abundant bulk of affliction and assignment into architectonics Gentle Bones with me,” he says.
He additionally best up awards for Top Bounded English Pop Song (for Until We Die) and Adolescent Songwriter of the Year at the Composers and Authors Association of Singapore Awards in September.
“I am beholden to the bounded music arena for actuality of abundant access to me and the bodies who abutment the music for befitting our aggregate dream going.”
Next year will be a active one for him. He is currently alive on accepting alive shows about the arena and is planning to arch aback to the flat anon to adapt new releases.
“I absolutely appetite to booty time abutting year to attack to actualize article unique.”
Eddino Abdul Hadi
12 MR FAZAL BAHARDEEN, 53, architect and arch controlling of CrescentRating, a appraisement and accreditation account for Muslim-friendly travel
Mr Fazal Bahardeen, 53, Architect And Arch Controlling Of CrescentRating. ST PHOTO: ALPHONSUS CHERN
Recognising a gap in the accommodation industry and to advice Muslim travellers analyze which hotels and restaurants baby to their needs, Mr Fazal Bahardeen started CrescentRating – a website that ante hotels and restaurants – in 2008.
This was followed, in 2010, by an ceremony baronial of Muslim-friendly destinations about the world.
The aboriginal of its kind, it admiring the absorption of MasterCard and calm they launched the MasterCard-CrescentRating All-around Muslim Biking Index in 2014, an ceremony assay and arbitrary of the booming Muslim biking market, which is projected to be account US$220 billion (S$319 billion) by 2020.
From actuality a one-man actualization in 2008, CrescentRating is now the go-to antecedent of advice on Muslim biking for governments, biking agencies and tourism boards about the world.
Mr Fazal, who is affiliated and has three children, additionally oversees HalalTrip, a association belvedere area Muslim travellers get inspired, book trips and column aboriginal content; and Muslim Biking Warehouse, a belvedere abutting biking agents with Muslim-friendly operators.
This year has been addition outstanding one for the company. It hosted the countdown Halal In Biking – Asia Summit 2016 at ITB Asia, the arch barter actualization for the Asian biking market, to altercate developments in halal travel.
According to Mr Fazal, it still has a continued way to go as countries brainwash themselves on Muslim needs.
Next year, his ambition is to abound the cardinal of HalalTrip visitors from 500,000 to one actor visitors a ages by the boilerplate of abutting year and body its association platform.
“I appetite to accomplish it alike easier for Muslim travellers to analyze any allotment of the apple and I accomplishment added and added destinations will accomplish this happen,” says Mr Fazal, who is authoritative his admission on the Activity Ability List.
13 DARRELL ANG, 37, aqueduct and aesthetic administrator of the Sichuan Symphony Orchestra
Darrell Ang, 37, aqueduct andartistic administrator of the Sichuan Symphony Orchestra. PHOTO: CAROLE LEUNG
Grammy appointee Darrell Ang is a assertive in the apple of classical music. He is authoritative his admission on the Activity Ability Ceremony for his arch achievements this year.
The aloft music administrator of France’s Orchestre Symphonique de Bretagne counts engagements at the Mariinsky Theatre in Russia and Canada’s Vancouver Symphony Orchestra as contempo highlights.
His aboriginal CD recording – Humen 1839, in which he led the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra – was nominated for a Grammy Accolade for Best Orchestral Performance aftermost year.
Ang, who absent to Latvian aqueduct Andris Nelsons, is said to be the additional Singaporean to get a Grammy nomination.
It was this recording that aggressive the administration of the Sichuan Symphony Orchestra in China to name him the orchestra’s aesthetic administrator aboriginal aftermost week.
The Paris-based aqueduct is additionally recognised for his administration of the Singapore All-embracing Ceremony of Music.
The ceremony comprised classical music and articulate concerts by both acclaimed all-embracing musicians, such as the Alcove Orchestra of Europe, and Singapore talents, such as Chinese alcove music ensemble Ding Yi Music Company. The additional copy took abode in October.
Ang, who helms the ceremony with Singaporean violinist Loh Jun Hong, had to fly aback actuality assorted times this year for meetings. At times, the available backward for alone two canicule afore aerial aback out.
He says: “The ceremony is important to me. It’s about putting our bounded aptitude out there and accept adopted musicians accommodating with them. It’s important for an barter to booty abode so that they can again be accustomed the apple stage.”
14 MRS CHRISTINA ONG, in her 60s, architect of Club 21
Mrs Christina Ong, architect of Club 21.
The bounded actualization doyenne, best accepted as the architect and managing administrator of affluence multi-label cast Club 21, makes it assimilate the Activity Ability Ceremony this year for the aperture of Como Dempsey.
The affairs enclave, amid at Tanglin Village, fabricated account this year aback it was appear that it would not alone abode a restaurant by acclaimed French restaurateur Jean-Georges Vongerichten, but would additionally be the armpit of allegorical actualization abstraction abundance Dover Street Market.
The exceptional actualization retailer, founded by Comme des Garcons’ Rei Kawakubo, is accepted to accessible its doors some time abutting year.
One-Michelin-starred Peranakan restaurant Candlenut and Japanese restaurant Ippoh Tempura Bar by Ginza Ippoh accept already opened their doors at Como Dempsey.
This is not the aboriginal time Mrs Ong has fabricated it to the ceremony for her contributions to the retail and actualization industry.
She was No. 2 in 2007 aback Club 21 acclaimed its 35th anniversary. That aforementioned year, she was additionally appointed administrator of the National Parks Lath – a position she still holds.
In 2014, the billionaire baron was aback on the ability ceremony at No. 4 for putting Como Hotels and Resorts on the all-around map with new hotels in Miami, the Maldives and Phuket.
Mrs Ong is affiliated to acreage magnate Ong Beng Seng, 70. They accept two children.
According to Forbes, they accept an estimated net account of US$2 billion (S$2.9 billion).
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The awfully media shy Mrs Ong beneath to animadversion on her admittance in this year’s list.
15 MR DENNIS TAY AND MS AMANDA ENG, both 31. He is the architect of Naiise and she is its business director
Mr Dennis Tay and Ms Amanda Eng, both 31. He is the architect of Naiise and she is its business director. PHOTO: DON WONG FOR THE SUNDAY TIMES
Singapore-designed products, such as ang ku kueh-shaped cushions and shirts, and notebooks emblazoned with Singlish phrases, accept been massively accepted in the aftermost few years.
This abnormality owes abundant to Naiise, a three-year-old multi-label abundance that stocks appurtenances by bounded designers.
Consumers are lapping up the Singapore-themed goods. That is why Naiise, which started online, broadcast this year admitting a apathetic retail scene. It is additionally why its founders are authoritative their admission on the Activity Ability List.
In May, it opened its flagship store, an 8,500 sq ft amplitude in the basement of The Cathay in Handy Road, and a 5,500 sq ft Wonderland-themed pop-up abundance in Suntec City mall. It currently has bristles abiding aliment and two pop-ups.
It additionally launched Accompany of Naiise, a associates programme that comes with absolute perks; and I Eat Design, Naiise’s aboriginal food- meets-design festival.
Not bad for a business that started in its founder’s bedroom.
In 2013, Mr Tay put in $3,000 of his own money to get Naiise going. He afterwards roped in Ms Eng to be its business director. The pair, who got affiliated aftermost year, accustomed their aboriginal adolescent this year.
Mr Tay says Naiise has ashore to its aboriginal actualization of acknowledging bounded architecture alike as it grows. Every week, the abundance puts out 20 to 30 new designs, and represents 632 Singapore labels to date.
And abutting year looks to be promising. Mr Eng affairs to booty Naiise overseas, ambience up a boutique in Kuala Lumpur and starting a website committed to London. The British basic ability be a abruptness best to aggrandize into, but he says Naiise gets a abundant cardinal of orders from there.
The new claiming is to banal Singapore-designed articles that accept an all-embracing appeal.
Mr Tay says: “A lot of Singapore designers started bearing articles with a homesickness factor. These assignment in Singapore, but to accomplish it overseas, the articles allegation to evolve.”
Natasha Ann Zachariah
16 MICHELLE CHONG, 39, film-maker and actress
Michelle Chong produced, wrote, directed and starred in Lulu The Movie. PHOTOS: LEFT PROFILE, HUAT FILMS
With the advice of a acreage Chinese accent, an atomic wig and blatant bobcat prints, Michelle Chong struts assimilate the Activity Ability Ceremony at No. 16 with Lulu The Cine – which she produced, wrote, directed and starred in.
In its aperture weekend aftermost month, it was up adjoin blockbuster fantasy blur Fantastic Beasts And Area To Find Them and the Disney activated flick Moana.
While it came in at No. 3, its per-screen boilerplate was college than Moana’s. The cine has fabricated $1.96 actor aback its absolution on Nov 24.
Michelle Chong produced, wrote, directed and starred in Lulu The MoviePHOTOS: LEFT PROFILE, HUAT FILMS
While “extremely happy” with the numbers, Chong adds: “Every cine is a accident and there’s no appropriate formula, so annihilation is anytime for certain. I don’t anticipate we can anytime apprehend any affectionate of box appointment because there are so abounding things that are not aural our control.”
The actualization of Lulu, a arrant karaoke hostess from arctic China, was created by Chong for Mediacorp’s account banter television show, The Noose.
She credits the bivouac for some of the success as it absorbed admirers by assuming that the cine was actual altered from the actualization and architectonics of The Noose.
The film-maker, who is single, was ahead on the Activity Ability Ceremony in 2012, advancing in at No. 19 for the success of her admission film, the ball Already Famous. It fabricated $1.4 actor at the box office, while her additional film, 3 Peas In A Pod (2013), becoming $500,000.
She affairs to alpha a YouTube approach abutting year, a belvedere to advertise agitative aboriginal characters as able-bodied as artists from her Left Profile agency, Pornsak Prajakwit and Lee Teng.
17 MR KOK HENG LEUN, 50, Arts NMP
Mr Kok Heng Leun, 50, Arts NMP .ST PHOTO: LAU FOOK KONG
Nominated Member of Parliament Kok Heng Leun has fabricated arts and ability a allotment of Parliamentary discussion. He makes it to the Activity Ability Ceremony for his capability as a agent for the arts and civilian society.
The affiliated ancestor of two was aftermost on the Arts Ability Ceremony in 2005. That year, the aesthetic administrator of Drama Box led the theatre affiliation out of the red and into full-time operations afterwards a two-year hiatus.
Mr Kok has announced in Parliament on issues alignment from burghal planning to the built-in changes to the adopted Presidency.
Last month, during agitation over works affecting the battleground Ellison Architectonics at the alliance of Bukit Timah and Selegie roads, erected in 1924, he asked the authorities to accede authoritative cultural appulse assessments binding for development projects.
In October, he backed a motion to conserve key areas of Dakota Crescent. Built in 1958, the apartment acreage is up for redevelopment, but some association advance that the barrio be acclimated by arts groups and amusing enterprises, or as rental flats.
He is additionally allotment of Ubin Fun, a arrangement of agencies and stakeholders belief how to accomplish Pulau Ubin a acceptable community.
He holds affairs for arts groups to altercate affairs that affect them, such as proposed changes to the Singapore Copyright Act. Via the Arts NMP Facebook page, he and his aggregation alarm for acknowledgment on new Bills, which he brings up in Parliament.
He says he is blessed to accept started some conversations amid the authorities and civilian society.
“This assurance is not about actual change. It takes time. Consultation creates doors for you to disagree acerb and your altercation is a bulk of record.”
18 MR LOH LIK PENG, 44, architect of Unlisted Collection, a restaurant and auberge group
Mr Loh Lik Peng, 44, architect of Unlisted Collection. ST PHOTO: NIVASH JOYVIN
Hotelier-restaurateur Loh Lik Peng was aftermost on the Activity Ability Ceremony in 2013 at No. 3.
This year, he is best for the success of his newest hotel, The Old Clare Auberge in Sydney, Australia, as able-bodied as several of his award-winning restaurants.
The Old Clare Hotel, which opened in Sydney’s Chippendale neighbourhood in September aftermost year, won the 2016 Australian Auberge Guide Awards’ Bazaar Auberge of the Year; was nominated for Australia’s arch Bazaar auberge and Australia’s Arch New Auberge at the Apple Biking Awards this year; and won awards for best Auberge Interior Design, Auberge Bar and Auberge Restaurant at the Auberge Administration Awards 2016 in Sydney this year, area Mr Loh was additionally awarded Asia-Pacific Freeholder of the Year.
The 62-room auberge – a face-lifting of two abandoned ancestry buildings, The Clare Auberge pub and Carlton & United Breweries Administration Architectonics – is his aboriginal attack in the accommodation arena Bottomward Under.
Its bar, rooftop pond basin and award-winning restaurants Kensington Street Amusing by Michelin-starred chef Jason Atherton and Automata by Clayton Wells, one of Australia’s hottest chefs, accept become the amusing affection and highlight of the neighbourhood.
Back home, Mr Loh’s avant-garde Australian barbecue restaurant Burnt Ends in Teck Lim Road debuted on Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016 at No. 30 and his two new restaurants, Cheek by Jowl and Salted and Hung, accept accustomed babble reviews.
But it is the success of The Old Clare which stands out as his proudest accomplishment this year, says Mr Loh. “Being able to accomplish in a abode like Sydney, one of the affairs capitals of the world, is actual gratifying.”
19 MS LAURETTA ALABONS, 46, AND MR ROSS KNUDSON, 52, owners of LAMC Productions
Ms Lauretta Alabons, 46, and Mr Ross Knudson,52, Owners Of LAMC Productions. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM
It has been a solid year for alive ball in Singapore. And for consistently abacus to the affluent assortment of gigs here, actualization apostle LAMC, run by affiliated brace Lauretta Alabons and Ross Knudson, makes it to the Activity Ability List.
While they are not abaft the better shows in town, the gigs they accept brought in this year accomplished out to a advanced spectrum of audiences.
Rockers bent German veterans Scorpions at the Suntec Singapore Convention & Exhibition Centre, indie music admirers saw British figure Morrissey at the Marina Barrage and admirers of anxious ball were amused by American comedienne Margaret Cho at the Kallang Theatre. The ball shows are handled by LAMC’s sister company, LA Ball Live.
This is the additional time the aggregation is on the Activity Ability Ceremony – it was additionally ranked in 2009.
Ms Alabons says: “We’re all about actuality across-the-board aback it comes to putting on shows. We adulation to attending out into the admirers and see a assorted army that crosses all boundaries.”
Mr Knudson adds: “We don’t aloof sit and delay for the bigger acts. We baby to the alcove markets too, that’s our aliment and butter. We’re dejected collar, we’re bottomward in the trenches too.”
Next year is abstraction up to be an alike bigger year for the 17-year-old company.
Among the shows lined up are British indie-folk accompanist Passenger at The Brilliant Theatre on Jan 13; British metalcore upstarts Accompany Me The Horizon at D’Marquee, Downtown East, on Feb 2; and a awful advancing actualization by American adamantine bedrock bandage Guns N’ Roses at the Changi Exhibition Centre on Feb 25.
On the ball front, LAMC is dipping its toes in political humour by putting on the Goodbye Obama, Hello Trump Ball Bout at Kallang Theatre on Jan 18. It actualization American comedians Reggie Brown as approachable United States admiral Barack Obama and Anthony Atamanuik as US President-elect Donald Trump.
Knudson says: “When we aboriginal started, activity to a concert or a actualization wasn’t absolutely a allotment of people’s lifestyle. Now I anticipate it is allotment of the culture.”
Eddino Abdul Hadi
20 MS CAROLYN KAN, 44, jewellery designer
Ms Carolyn Kan, 44, Jewellery Designer. ST PHOTO: LAU FOOK KONG
Making her aboriginal actualization on the Activity Ability Ceremony is Singaporean artisan Carolyn Kan, architect of jewellery characterization Carrie K and the one amenable for the conception of bounded architecture aggregate Keepers.
Carrie K has, in its eighth year, gone from backbone to strength. Besides ablution collections in New York, Ms Kan additionally collaborated with ball amassed Disney for a accumulating aggressive by the film, Alice Through The Attractive Glass (2016).
The characterization additionally bagged awards for Artisan of the Year at the Singapore Actualization Awards and Best Emphasis Artisan at the styleXstyle Trailblazers Awards.
Ms Kan accustomed a appropriate acceptance accolade at the contempo Singapore Tourism Awards by the Singapore Tourism Board.
Ms Kan, a aloft managing administrator of an announcement agency, launched Carrie K in 2009. She is affiliated to Mr Chiew Huan Chong, 49, who is arch of assembly at Carrie K. They accept no children.
Home-grown architecture aggregate Keepers, which Ms Kan started in 2011, additionally begin a abiding home this year at the National Architecture Centre. It ahead active a pop-up amplitude in Orchard Green, at the alliance of Cairnhill and Orchard roads, for 16 months until January this year. The boutique carries bounded labels such as chocolatier Demochoco, jotter cast The Paper Bunny and bandage characterization Binary Style.
The affable designer, who is additionally accepted to admonish and coach adolescent Singapore designers and creatives attractive to alpha their own business, has not accustomed abundant anticipation to her accomplishments this year.
“I’ve so abounding projects activity on, you don’t consistently stop to anticipate about what we accept done as a team.”
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On authoritative it to the Activity Ability Ceremony this year, she says: “I was like, ‘What? Really?’ It is such an honour to be on the ceremony with such amazing luminaries.”
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