First heritage blueprint for Singapore to preserve culture
Plan aims to preserve heritage buildings and cultural artefacts, as well as traditions, customs, music and even food
For the first time, Singapore is creating an Our SG Heritage Plan, a comprehensive national masterplan for safeguarding and promoting Singapore heritage and culture.
Besides museum artefacts and preserving buildings, the plan also aims to create a list of intangible cultural heritage elements.
This could be anything from traditions, rituals, customs, songs and food.
It was one of the announcements made by the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth (MCCY) yesterday.
Around $66 million has been set aside to implement this plan, which will involve public consultation and feedback from stakeholders and the community on how to keep Singapore heritage alive.
Over the last two years, the National Heritage Board has engaged over 730 heritage experts, non-government organisations, academics, museum goers, volunteers, educators and youth.
A travelling exhibition of the heritage plan was visited by about 34,000 people and more than 7,300 gave feedback.
Culture, Community and Youth Minister Grace Fu said: "Through the arts and heritage, we celebrate our diversity by understanding where we come from, appreciating who we are, and our place in the world."
Singapore recently ratified the Unesco 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage.
This gives a chance for one of Singapore's own intangible cultural heritage items to make its way on the Unesco list.
Said Ms Fu: "In the coming months, we will continue our conversations with the community to uncover the intangibles that resonate with Singaporeans."
In addition, Parliamentary Secretary for Culture, Community and Youth Baey Yam Keng said the Arts Sectoral Plans would be enhanced to promote Singaporean literature and music.
MCCY said that according to The National Music Consumption Survey, Singaporeans are avid music listeners, with six in 10 listening to music daily.
But only one in 10 listen to Singapore music.
To promote local music, the National Arts Council will be working with music company Bandwagon to launch Hear65, an online platform for people to listen to home-grown music.
The music featured will be from a range of genres, time periods, artistes and languages.
Some examples of music that will be available include Aisyah Aziz's Senyum Saja and Liang Wern Fook's Xi Shui Chang Liu.
Contemporary music such as those by Gentle Bones and Taufik Batisah will also be featured.
Mr Baey said: "With access to music from more than 350 local musicians, we hope more Singaporeans will follow our local music, and continue to develop our Singapore's music scene."
MCCY will also give local literature books in Singapore's four official languages to all primary and secondary schools to increase their Singapore Literature collections in their libraries.
Mr Baey added: "We hope that the early exposure to SingLit will allow them to develop a sustained interest in local literary works; these local stories will also serve as a shared experience as they grow up."