HCA NEWS HCA2005 celebrations launched in Singapore

On April 2 Singapore launched its official celebration of Hans Christian Andersen in 2005 by appointing four distinguished personalities as Hans Christian Andersen Ambassadors.

By ms - H.C. Andersen 2005 - 03 April 2004

Singapore will feature prominently in the worldwide celebration of the bicentenary of the birth of Hans Christian Andersen in 2005. A whole host of projects are in the pipeline including TV features, exhibitions, concerts, new translations and theatre productions.
On the occasion of the Bicentenary of the Danish storyteller Hans Christian Andersen (HCA) a worldwide celebration takes place in 2005. Singapore is among five focal points in Asia Pacific. On Friday 2 April 2004 the preparatory celebrations was officially launched. The Guest of Honour for the launch was the Acting Minister for Education, H. E. Mr. Tharman Shanmugaratnam.

Four distinguished personalities was nominated as Hans Christian Andersen Ambassadors at the event:

- Prof. Tommy Koh, Ambassador-at-Large and Director of Institute of Policy Studies.

- Prof. Simon Tay, Chairman of Singapore Institute of International Affairs.

- Dr Catherine Lim, Singapore's famous writer.

- Mr Heine Askaer-Jensen, Group Managing Director of Jebsen & Jessen (SEA) Pte Ltd.
"The Danish storyteller Hans Christian Andersen is one of the most creative, imaginative and popular storytellers the world has seen. His style of writing is easy, fluent and direct. He communicates everlasting truths about human beings, their relations and the societies we shape. That explains why he is still read and will continue to be so. Regardless of time, culture, ethnicities and religion he entertains, educates and deepen our understanding. His mind was a truly creative one," says Ambassador Jorgen Orstrom Moller, Royal Danish Embassy in Singapore.
In Singapore preparations are still in their early stages, but several parties have signed up for this unique platform in celebration of storytelling - the pleasure of reading - the art of writing.

To mention a few:
The SRT Little Company will produce The Snow Queen and Escape Theatre is planning an exchange programme between children of Canberra Secondary School, Singapore and the children of The Bishop David Brown School in the UK to produce a play based on one of HCA's stories. DramaPlus Arts are planning to include works of HCA in their outreach programme. There are also talks in progress with the Esplanade, Writer?s Festival and naturally the Ministry of Education, who will try to incorporate the huge educational package that the organisers in Denmark have created.

"It's a wonderful Festival that will celebrate the art of reading, writing and sharing stories, and to see so many different parties in Singapore work together to make the Celebrations unique is remarkable. I think HCA 2005 will have a huge tourist potential too from i.e. Malaysia and Indonesia, given that Singapore is the only HCA destination in the region with this level of activities," says Charlotte Nors, Project Coordinator.

For more information about the global celebrations, please refer to hca2005.com.

Attached picture is from the ceremony in Singapore showing from the left:

HCA Ambassador Simon Tay; HCA Ambassador, Ambassador-at-Large, Professor Tommy Koh; Ambassador, The Royal Danish Embassy, Jørgen Ørstrøm Møller; Acting Minister of Education Tharman Shanmugaratnam; HCA Ambassador, Author Catherine Lim; HCA Ambassador, Managing Director Jebsen&Jessen Heine Askjær-Jensen.

Photographer: John Lim