NDP 2018: 'We Are Singapore' back as theme song, but with a twist

NDP 2018: 'We Are Singapore' back as theme song, but with a twist

This year's National Day Parade (NDP) theme song is a revamped version of the old classic "We Are Singapore".

SINGAPORE: This year's National Day Parade (NDP) theme song is a revamped version of the old classic "We Are Singapore".

A new prelude breathes fresh air into the song, originally written in 1987, and fashioned after a speech made by founding Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew in 1966.

Launching the theme, theme song, logo and concept of this year's NDP on Tuesday (May 22), chairman of the NDP 2018 Executive Committee Brigadier-General Alfred Fox said everyone loves the song.

“It is an all-time favourite. You know the lyrics, I do. We sing it all the time. The school kids know it as well,” he said. 

He was speaking at the launch event at the Marina Bay Floating Platform, which is where this year's NDP will be held.

Lyricist, singer and composer Charlie Lim came up with the new prelude for the song after researching past National Day songs for a week and coming up with a demo.

It was “scary” because the song is so iconic, Mr Lim said.

When asked if people would like the song, he said: “I’m proud of it, I like it, it comes from an honest place. Hopefully, it resonates with other people." 

His vocals in the original demo, recorded in his home,  were used in the video, as his performance was deemed more “heartfelt” than the one he tried to record in the studio. 

The song was chosen in line with this year's theme bearing the same name. 


Of the theme, BG Fox said: “It says who we are, where we have come from, what we have overcome and what we aspire to be together.”

we are singapore ndp 2018 logo
NDP 2018 logo. 

There were many ideas and variations in trying to represent “We are Singapore” as a logo, BG Fox said. A durian, an island and hearts were floated as options. After several iterations, a typographic logo was chosen for the first time, he said. The words are within a speech bubble embedded with a crescent and five stars. 

BG Fox described the logo as “enduring” and said it follows the clear message of the theme. 

“It is the voice of Singaporeans proudly proclaiming who we are as a people, as a country and that this is our home,” he said.  


Along with their counterparts from the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) Parachute Team, also known as the Red Lions, naval combat divers will be making a water jump, BG Fox said. The water jump is something they do as part of their job, he added. 

A crowd favourite, this year’s aerial display and flypast promise to be spectacular, in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF).

BG Fox also said that this year's military tattoo will be the biggest yet at the floating platform. The Combined Schools Choir will also return after five years. 

As in previous years, the parade will be split into three segments: the pre-parade, the parade and ceremony, and the show. 

Organised by 3rd Singapore Division, along with public and private sector agencies, the NDP this year will involve almost 14,000 participants, volunteers and personnel behind the scenes and on stage. 

Singapore citizens and permanent residents can apply for tickets to the parade from Wednesday to Jun 3.

NDP 2018 application graphic

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Source: CNA/ja(hm)