“Arts complements the government’s effort to promote wellness, especially in addressing the dementia community”

Mr Alex Yeo, Adviser to Aljunied GRC Grassroots Organisations

The Crestar Education Group (CEG) recently opened what is believed to be the first inclusive arts learning space in People’s Association’s Kovan Hub in Hougang Street 21. “Kovarts”, the inclusive and accessible “Arts for all” centre, offers programmes for seniors, adults, children and those differently-abled in the Paya Lebar-Kovan neighbourhood.

Some 150 guests attended the official opening on 7 January 2023. Guest of Honour was the Adviser to Aljunied GRC Grassroots Organisations, Mr Alex Yeo Sheng Chye. Former actor Edmund Chen was a Special Guest, who helped to present prizes to winners of a SPRING Art contest held earlier. (Click here to read story on the art contest)

The programme included performances from Crestar Learning Centre (ballet) and Kovarts’ programme partners – Distinct Creative Arts (hip hop) and Speech & Drama items from Zoo-phonics. We are also honoured to have Yamaha Music School Hougang’s participation in a music guest performance on an Electone. In the 1980s, Yamaha Music School in Hougang began establishing itself in the Kovan community, nurturing talents and impacting lives.

As the guests included many children, there were fun fringes activities such as a colouring activity, as well as cotton candy and popcorn booths. Trial class sessions were also held for those interested in hip hop, ballet for children, and art.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Mr Yeo acknowledged Crestar’s presence in Hougang over the past 30 years. He applauded the determination by Crestar to launch the “Arts for all” concept in spite of delays caused earlier by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Mr Yeo also added that Arts complements the government’s effort to promote wellness, especially in addressing the dementia community which he personally cares about.

“The arts has been increasingly recognised for its therapeutic benefits, such as helping seniors navigate aging and loneliness. Kovarts is doing its part for the long-term social, mental, and physical well-being of our communities,” said Miss Soh Bee Ling, General Manager, CEG Enrichment Division.

The centre will be collaborating with the People’s Association to offer specially-designed weekly workshops on dance and art for residents in the Paya Lebar-Kovan neighbourhood.

CEG operates Crestar Learning Centre (CLC), a pioneer in the arts and enrichment industry established 45 years ago. It also manages four preschool brands, namely ELFA, Kinderland, NurtureStars and Skool4Kidz.

Our guest performer from Yamaha Music School on the Electone creating an upbeat moment for the opening ceremony.

A high-energy dance performance by the Distinct Creative Arts students

A beautiful ballet performance by Crestar’s Little Dancing Fairies

A speech and drama performance put up by students from Zoo-phonics

Trial art session conducted by our teacher, Mr Justin Foo

Little children having so much fun grooving to the music during the trial hip hop session

The Kovarts official opening plaque unveiled
From left – Mr Vincent Teoh (Zoo-phonics, Director), Mr Robert Leong (Crestar Education Group, COO), Mr Alex Yeo (Adviser to Aljunied GRC Grassroots Organisations) & Mr Xue Yong Zhi (Distinct Creative Arts, Managing Director)

A group photo of our ‘Spring’ Art Contest winners with our guests
(kneeling from left), Mr Edmund Chen, Mr Robert Leong & Mr Alex Yeo