Remarks By Dr Lee Boon Yang at The Official Opening of IMG Artists' New Singapore Office and Asian HQ in The Lighthouse, Fullerton Hotel

07/10/2005

REMARKS BY DR LEE BOON YANG, MINISTER FOR INFORMATION, COMMUNICATIONS AND THE ARTS AT THE OFFICIAL OPENING OF IMG ARTISTS' NEW SINGAPORE OFFICE AND ASIAN HQ, THURSDAY 6 OCTOBER 2005 AT 6.00 PM IN THE LIGHTHOUSE, FULLERTON HOTEL

Mr Barrett Wissman, Chairman, IMG Artists,

Distinguished guests,

Ladies and gentlemen

Good evening,

I am very happy to welcome IMG Artists' establishment of a new Asia Regional Headquarters and Office in Singapore. I believe that you will find in Singapore an ideal location for your business of staging, promoting and managing classical performances and talent.

2 IMG Artists is no stranger to Singapore. The company had presented many well-received productions in Singapore since the mid '90s. Hence the setting up of a new Asia Regional Headquarters and Singapore Office is a logical and pragmatic progression founded on your past experience of the Singapore business environment with particular emphasis on arts business. My Ministry and the National Arts Council together with our partners, EDB and STB, are indeed very pleased to be able to contribute to your decision to take this momentous step of establishing a regional headquarters here in Singapore. You can rest assured of our continued support as you grow your operations in Asia.

3 I am sure all of you are well aware of IMG Artists' standing as the largest global classical arts event and talent company with offices in New York, Paris, London, Lucca (Italy) and Kuala Lumpur. Some of you may be more familiar with the other IMG which represents sporting icons such as tennis pros the William sisters and golfing legend Tiger Woods. Well IMG Artists represents their equivalent in the classical arts circle such as Itzhak Perlman, James Galway, Lang Lang, St Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra and many more household names and icons in classical performing arts.

4 I would like to specially extend a very warm welcome to Mr Barrett Wissman and his team to Singapore. I first met Mr Wissman in Dec 2004. This was followed by another meeting in Mar 2005. I came away from both meetings deeply impressed by Mr Wissman's commitment and dedication to the arts and his innovative vision of creating events such as the Tuscan Sun Festival to showcase musical talent in a convivial lifestyle and tourism context. I would like to thank Mr Wissman for choosing Singapore as your new Asian hub to spearhead IMG Artists' arts management business in Asia.

5 We are glad to be part of your international development strategy. I am confident that IMG Artists will enjoy synergy with Singapore's vision of becoming a global city for the arts. Your presence in Singapore will add to the buzz and vibrancy of Singapore arts and culture. On our part, we will provide you with an efficient, reliable and well connected platform to tap the rapidly growing Asian arts market. I believe your arts management and presentations will contribute to the growth of the arts business in Singapore.

6 I am also delighted to note that the launch of IMG Artists Asia Regional Headquarters coincides with a rare performance by world-renowned tenor, José Carreras at Victoria Concert Hall. This 3-concert series also commemorates the Victoria Concert Hall's 100th Anniversary. José Carreras' appearance was made possible by collaboration between IMG Artists and the Singapore Symphony Orchestra. We look forward to more such exciting events from IMG Artists - in music, dance, theatre, visual arts and other art forms. I think it is a great start to our partnership.

7 In conclusion, I would like to congratulate IMG Artists on the opening of your Asia Regional Headquarters in Singapore and wish you every success in all your future endeavours.

Thank you.

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