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Music speaks out for mental health awareness at Mind the Music!

A unique collaboration between CAL and The TENG Ensemble Ltd, the CAL-TENG Charity Concert 2019 - Mind the Music! was held at Victoria Theatre on 22 March 2019. It was the first joint fundraising event by Caregivers Alliance Limited (CAL) and The TENG Ensemble Ltd, and aimed to further the work of both charities in a fun and new way. Through an evening of music by The TENG Ensemble and other guest performances at the Victoria Theatre on 22 March 2019, the concert tied awareness of mental health together with appreciation for Chinese culture and heritage. Four original works by The TENG Ensemble, dubbed “酸甜苦辣”, or The Four Flavours of Life Suite were featured. The suite described the ebbs and flows of life and reflected the many challenges faced by those suffering from mental health issues. Each work was characterised by one of the four traditional flavours of taste (sour, sweet, bitter and spicy) and inspired by a different mental health issue: dementia, bipolar disorder, depression and schizophrenia respectively. Besides performances by The TENG Ensemble, there were also collaborative works with celebrities and partners, including the APSN drummers, Nicholas Chan, the Coronation Singers under the direction of Darius Lim, Ivor Lim, Siti Khalijah Zainal, Kiki Noble and Gavin Tan. The evening was hosted by Hossan Leong, whose charismatic personality brought the show together in a lively and entertaining way. It was an evening to remember with President Halimah Yacob as the concert's Guest of Honour, and the evening’s formal dinner attended by Senior Minister of State for Health Edwin Tong. More than 500 guests were present. In total, over $1.2 million was raised through the proceeds of the ticket sales, the charity auction and other donations. The proceeds from the fundraiser will go towards developing a Singaporean musical identity and meeting the needs of caregivers of persons with mental health issues. The concert’s theme was especially timely with mental health the focus of President's Challenge 2019, and with the announcement of more government support for caregivers by Senior Minister of State for Health Edwin Tong on 13 February 2019 in Parliament. Through the powerful conduit of music, the concert spreads the word of the need to support caregivers and advocate against mental health stigma.

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