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Published: Monday January 28, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Monday April 22, 2013 MYT 3:09:19 PM

Padang Merdeka to be venue of CNY eve concert

KUCHING: Padang Merdeka here will be the venue of a Chinese New Year eve countdown concert, which will be broadcasted live across Malaysia on Astro Hua Hee Dai and TVB Hong Kong.

The historic field is one of four concert locations selected across Malaysia, with others in Penang, Johor Baru, Kuala Lumpur and Hong Kong. The live telecast of the concert from Kuching to Hong Kong could be a first for the state.

Although the Sarawak Tourism Ministry has not yet been publicly announced as one of the event’s supporters, The Star has learnt that the concert has received the full support of its minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg.

“We’ve asked the minister to put up some funds for fireworks. This will be a significant moment for us in Sarawak. It is Chinese New Year and we are anticipating thousands at the padang. Just imagine how great Kuching will look on television screens and surprise viewers as far as Hong Kong,” said Plaza Merdeka Holdings managing director Steve Ng.

The mall is putting up RM150,000 for the event – mostly for staging and lighting – jointly with Astro. Hua Hee Dai, which is on channel 333, is one of the most watched stations in Malaysia.

“According to the schedule, the Kuching’s concert should have about 40 minutes of airtime on the overall programme,” Ng said.

The concert, which is being cross promoted by MyFM, is slated to begin at 9pm, with an opening song by all the artistes involved. Following a three-minute introduction, the programme will kick off with a children’s medley from Kuching. The Kuala Lumpur’s segment begins some 30 minutes after that.

Performances from Sarawak will return to the live telecast towards the tail-end of the programme, including a joint performance of Chinese songs, which will be incorporated with the sape. Another segment from here will be street dance.

The countdown and midnight segments will be a multi-cast, featuring all the cities in rotation and via picture-in-picture. Performances from Kuala Lumpur will close the countdown show at about 10 minutes past midnight.

“We are so excited about this,” enthused Ng.

“This is a great commercial opportunity for not just the mall but Sarawak’s tourism in general, particularly the promotion of Kuching. It’s going to be a great youthful multicultural event. We’ve been told that some of the Iban instrumentalists will be learning Mandarin as part of the show.”

The concert will also be featured inside Plaza Merdeka on its giant screen. The mall will stay open until 1am that day as part of the event.

Tags / Keywords: Community, News, Family Community, Plaza Merdeka, Tourism Ministry, Kuching, Hong Kong

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