The Israeli Embassy in Singapore held a number of events marking Israel’s 75th Independence over several consecutive days, chief among them an impressive reception for dignitaries from across the Singaporean spectrum and the Jewish and Israeli community. Highlighting the events were the performances of “Eve’s Women,” an Israeli band that plays Jewish and World music. Following are details of the events:
Reception at Hilton Orchard Hotel
Six hundred guests attended the event, which was the first official reception held by the Israeli Embassy in Singapore since the pandemic. The guest of honor was Mr. Tan Kiat How
Senior Minister of State for National Development and Senior Minister of State for Communications and Information. Also attending were two MPs, Ms. Cheng Li Hui and Mr. Patrick Tay, Attorney General and Solicitor General Lucien Wang, Aaron Beng Yao Cheng, Chief of the Defense Forces, Ian Mak, ambassador-designate to Israel, Dilhan Pillay Sandrasegara, Chairman of Temasek, David Koh, Commissioner of Cybersecurity and Chief Executive of the Cyber Security Agency (CSA) of Singapore, ambassadors, senior business officials from Singapore, members of the Singapore-Israel Industrial R&D Foundation (SIIRD) Binational Fund, and senior figures from the world of academia and culture and the State of Israel.
The event consisted of two parts – speeches, anthems and toasts to the presidents of both countries, and a musical performance. In his remarks, Israeli Ambassador to Singapore Sagi Karni referred to the long-standing friendship between the countries and peoples. He noted the cooperation and contribution of Israel to Singapore since the country’s beginnings, which has been recognized and appreciated by the Singaporean people and government. He detailed the trade data between the countries ($3.2 billion in 2022), as well as various Israeli-made technological developments existing in Singapore and their contribution to local government objectives such as cybersecurity and food.
The guest of honor, Tan Kiat How, praised the relations between the two countries and again thanked Israel, which provided military assistance to Singapore in its early days as a young country without a military. He pointed out that David Marshall, the first Chief Minister of Singapore from 1955 to 1956, was Jewish. He also detailed the numerous collaborations between the countries, including the recent agreement signed between the countries in the field of AL, and expressed hope for expanding cooperation to other areas. At the conclusion of his remarks, the minister said, “As small countries, both Israel and Singapore are committed to building a better future for all people.”
On the artistic side, the Israeli klezmer band, “Eve’s Women,” which traveled from Israel especially for the event, played with great talent and energy. The band, composed of five talented women musicians, plays Jewish ethnic music arranged in a fresh, new style.
Attendees felt like they were in Israel, photographed against the backdrop of a massive picture of the underwater observatory and the beach in Eilat, enjoying Israeli wine and authentic Israeli food such as arais, knafeh, falafel and tahini, and more, created by the head chef of the Hilton Hotel.
In addition to performing at the Independence Day reception, Eve’s Women held a joint klezmer performance with a local band and a guest workshop at SOTA, the School of the Arts Singapore. In conducting these activities, the Embassy showcased the band and klezmer music to a local audience, as well as creating new connections that may lead to future collaboration.