At 71, Mdm Hen Yin Cheng, a volunteer at our Active Ageing Hub (AAH) at Kampung Admiralty, continues to pursue her passion for Cantonese opera, performing for seniors and bringing joy to them through this beautiful art form.
Since she was a child, Mdm Hen was always interested in singing and in the last 20 years, she has been practising Cantonese opera as a hobby. She is currently part of a troupe based in Eunos Community Club which gathers for weekly practice.
The troupe performs at a variety of places, such as at retirement homes, community centres and even at public venues such as the National Library. Mdm Hen feels fortunate to have the opportunity to perform on stage for others, and feels very fulfilled that her talent is able to bring joy to others. “I want to be able to share my passion for singing and music with others. For some seniors, they may not have seen a live performance of Cantonese opera in a long while, and I am always glad to see them having a good time. Each time we have a performance, we will charter a bus to invite seniors from retirement homes to come.”
Her audiences greatly enjoy her performances, giving her huge applause especially when she has to perform difficult movements like bending her body. “Maybe they were worried I won’t be flexible enough to bend, or that I may fall!” Mdm Hen joked. With movements like these, she has to keep practising at home so that she would not become breathless or have difficulty performing on stage. Besides her vocals, Mdm Hen trains her body and stamina through exercises like walking.