THE crowd in Starhill Gallery stood in stunned silence when Carly Paoli took the stage and showcased her powerful vocals.
The rising British mezzo-soprano talent belted out a Yuletide tune specially for guests and 30 children from the Dignity for Children Foundation.
Paoli was in town to launch Starhill Gallery’s Christmas Charity Drive, in conjunction with the “A Journey Through Time IX” watch and jewellery showcase week.
She also gifted the children with early Christmas presents donated by the mall and its supporting tenants, namely Bedat & Co, Carrera y Carrera, Cecil Purnell, Cortina, Garrard & Co, Gubelin, Hermes and Mouawad.
During the month-long drive, patrons of the mall can donate gifts to the children by picking up wish tags on the Christmas tree located at the concierge on the Indulge Floor.
The gifts should be handed to the concierge by Dec 18 so that the mall will be able to deliver the presents to the children in time for Christmas.
“I urge each and everyone to join me in helping to make a child’s wish come true.
“And as you celebrate Christmas, know that somewhere, somehow, a child would be opening a gift that they otherwise wouldn’t have without your contribution,” said Paoli, who is a Unicef ambassador.
The charity effort was initiated by Starhill Gallery under the YTL Group to raise awareness on the foundation as well as encourage shoppers to get in the spirit of giving.
The afternoon wrapped up with a special tea session for the children at Newens Tea House, where they enjoyed sweet and savoury treats accompanied by a medley of Christmas songs by carollers.
In its ninth edition this year, “A Journey Through Time” takes a look at opulent pieces from 125 international watch and jewellery brands.
Paoli is set to perform alongside Italian tenor Alessandro Safina for the showcase’s grand finale, the Tourism and Culture Gala Night: Watch and Jewellery of the Year Awards Presentation today.