infopedia-logoOne of the joys of taking on writing assignments is that I get to research and discover things that are sometimes outside my areas of interest or course of life. I was awarded a project by the National Library Board to write stories of Cultural Medallion Awardees for Infopedia – an electronic encyclopedia on Singapore’s history, culture, people and events.

The Cultural Medallion honours individuals who have achieved excellence in the fields of literary arts, performing arts, visual arts and film, and have contributed to Singapore’s cultural environment. The award is conferred by the President and administered by the National Arts Council. Instituted in 1979 by Ong Teng Cheong in his then capacity as Acting Minister for Culture, the Cultural Medallion is the highest award for the arts in Singapore. Candidates for the Medallion are nominated every year, and the Medallion is awarded if there are suitable candidates. – Infopedia

What amazing Singaporeans!

Lynnette Seah

Lynnette Seah Mei Tsing (b. 1957, Singapore–), better known simply as Lynnette Seah, is an internationally acclaimed violinist. She has been a member of the Singapore Symphony Orchestra (SSO) since its inception in 1979 and is currently its co-leader. An ambassador …

Vivien Goh

Vivien Goh (born 1948, Singapore) is the daughter of the late Goh Soon Tioe, a pioneering violinist, music teacher and impresario who played a key role in the development of classical music in Singapore. Like her father, Goh is an accomplished violinist whose musical …

Choo Hwee Lim

Choo Hwee Lim (b. 28 September 1931, Singapore–d. 12 May 2008, Singapore) was an important figure in the development of choral music and opera in Singapore. An accomplished baritone singer and music teacher, Choo spotted, encouraged and nurtured once-unknown music …

Lee Wen

Lee Wen (b. 1957, Singapore–) is a multidisciplinary artist and one of Singapore’s most internationally recognised contemporary artists. A local pioneer of performance art, Lee promoted the art form during a time when it was difficult to do so. Best known for his …

Ang Chwee Chai

Ang Chwee Chai (b. 1910–d. 1995, Singapore) was one of Singapore’s leading pioneers in photography. He received the Honorary Excellence Distinction from the Swiss-based International Federation of Photographic Art (FIAP) in 1963 and was awarded the Honorary Fellowship …

Eric Khoo

Eric Khoo Kim Hai (b. 27 March 1965, Singapore–), better known simply as Eric Khoo, is a local filmmaker who has been credited with jumpstarting the Singapore film industry in the mid-1990s. Khoo, who helms local movie companies Zhao Wei Films and Gorylah Pictures, …

Lim Yau

Lim Yau (born 1952, Singapore) is a prominent orchestral and choral conductor whose long conducting career has included stints as Resident Conductor of the Singapore Symphony Orchestra (SSO) and Music Director of the Singapore Symphony Chorus (SSC). He is reputed …

David Tay Poey Cher

David Tay Poey Cher (b. 9 July 1945, Singapore–) is one of the most influential figures in the Singapore photography scene. He was the first Asian to be elected to the Directory Board of the International Federation of Photographic Art. From 1990 to 2013, Tay served …

Iskandar Mirza Ismail

Iskandar Mirza Ismail (b. 23 July 1956, Singapore–d. 1 November 2014, Singapore) is a prominent figure in Singapore’s music scene. A multitalented and versatile musician, Iskandar has worked as a composer, arranger, conductor, music director, recording producer, …

Tan Lip Seng

Tan Lip Seng (b. 1942, Singapore–) is a prominent local photographer known worldwide for his slide and travel photography. He has described his photography style as “painting with light and shadow”. Tan was conferred the Cultural Medallion in 1985 in recognition …

Max Le Blond

Max Le Blond (b. 1950, Singapore–) was conferred the Cultural Medallion for Theatre in 1987. At age 37, he was then among the youngest to receive the award. At a time when the stage was predominantly Anglo-centric, Le Blond relentlessly pushed for “a truly Singaporean …

Jennifer Tham Sow Ying

Jennifer Tham Sow Ying (b. 1962, Singapore–) is best known as the conductor of the Singapore Youth Choir (now the SYC Ensemble Singers, or SYC-ES), which she has led since 1986. Trained as a composer, Tham has been actively involved in educating young musicians …

Thirunalan Sasitharan

Thirunalan Sasitharan (b. 1958, Singapore–), also known as Sasi, is an actor, art critic, arts educator, activist, former journalist and former philosophy teacher. Besides being an outstanding actor, Sasitharan is one of the foremost thinkers in the local arts …

Milenko Prvacki

Milenko Prvacki (b. 1951, Yugoslavia–) began his artistic career in his native country, the former Yugoslavia, and had established himself as an artist in Europe before moving to Singapore in 1991. The prolific artist has deeply enriched the local visual arts scene …

Kelly Tang

Kelly Tang Yap Ming (Dr) (b. 1961, Singapore–), better known simply as Kelly Tang, is a prolific and versatile composer whose works cover various genres ranging from classical and jazz to cinematic and popular music. His myriad compositions have been performed …

Amanda Heng

Amanda Heng Liang Ngim (born 1951, Singapore), better known simply as Amanda Heng, is a contemporary artist known for her collaborative and multidisciplinary approach to art. Heng’s works typically explore real-world social issues in the context of Singapore’s …