Covid-19 Antigen Rapid Test

What used to be pre-event cocktails may now become pre-cocktail Covid testing with the advent of several antigen rapid test (ART) kits for consumers on the Singapore market.  

We testdrove the Panbio Covid-19 Antigen Self-Test made by Abbott to see how suitable it would be for use before events.  The kit, sold at selected pharmacies (we got ours from Guardian) has 10 swab tests in it.  

The pharmacist ran through the process briefly with us pre-purchase and reminded us to put aside about half an hour for the process, as well as not to carry it out in strong sunlight.

The process was fairly basic:

  • Prepare a swab and fill a test tube with a buffer liquid
  • The swab must be inserted about 2cm into each nostril (until resistance is felt) and swirled 5 times on each side
  • Then the swab is swirled in the buffer liquid in the test tube and the tip of the swab is broken off and left in the tube
  • At this point, one can open the test kit.  Ensuring no bubbles in the test tube, one can open the bottom cap of the test tube and drip 5 drops of the liquid into the test kit well.
  • The dye will proceed to spread across the test window but 15 minutes (and not more than 20 minutes) must elapse before the test can be read.
  • The control line (C) shows that the test is working.  If there is a pink test line (T) the result must be considered positive, even if the line is faint.  The tester should proceed to seek medical attention immediately.

Our tester reported that the test was fairly convenient and quick.  Owing to his sensitive nose he sneezed a couple of times after withdrawing the swab, but apart from that, found the process painless.  

At the relatively more reasonable cost of $10 – $13 a test, such ARTs may be the way to go for quick pre-event testing in the future!

Event Service Professional

First Dance Studio

“Dance is such a good addition to events because the attention is most caught when one is entertained.  

These days, if you look at company events or small events like weddings, product launches or even seminars, most of them are accompanied by some sort of entertainment that is customised to the company’s value, vision or message.

One of the best ways to do so is by having a dynamic, energetic team on stage to warm up the audience and deliver the message to them before the event starts.  

One of our most memorable experiences was taking part in AIA’s corporate client’s appreciation event as it was our first commercial show in early 2019 when the company was expanding.  We performed the martini cup dance, which is inspired by Dita Von Teese.  We were extremely blessed as it caught the attention of Zouk Singapore who then also became one of our working clients. 

Because of Covid, we are not able to open for business as our main clientele in events and shows cannot open either. However, we are now able to brand and market our company and have the time to explore, experiment and structure digital content and services.

With 5G technology almost available to consumers, we also foresee a huge overhaul for events in the near future. Covid-19 has forced many in the creative, fitness and entertainment industry to adapt to creative ways to engage their audience. While live events are still best experienced “live”, future technology will definitely bring forth new ways!

Moving forward, we will continue to pivot and roll out new services in the digital world with our core vision and mission in mind. That is, to help people with little to no background in performing have a memorable experience for their special event or day.”

Sherman Foo and Desirie Zhao
First Dance Studio

Event Service Professional


“When Covid hit our shores, there were several opportunities to pivot to online events. My last event with a physical crowd was in mid March. By the end March, I was already doing online hosting which has carried on through the circuit breaker and even today. 

I’m very blessed. My radio training days back then taught me well – to have endless creativity and the ability to create a theatre of imagination. These skills engage listeners with little more than words and sounds. So, online “LIVE” visual events are even easier for me – I can elicit the desired response from my audience with visual cues and body language!

My interest in hosting came about when I was with FM 100.3 radio training during my university days. I became a banker for five years after graduation but out of passion, I was hosting friends and relatives wedding celebrations on weekends. When more and more hosting jobs referrals came flooding in, my business mind knew that this was a sunrise industry. I decided to take a leap of faith and stepped into full-time hosting.  

The events and entertainment industry is very fast-paced. We have to be in tune with the latest trends, news and even fashion sense. 

There are 3 important factors that I work on to improve and practise my craft.  Firstly, sustainability – a skill or idea that worked several years back might not work now. We need to be always thinking, then producing and turning new, imaginative ideas into reality on stage.

Next, wellness. As hosts, we dictate the mood of the event and have to look good and healthy on stage. A professional host is about the whole package.

Finally, branding.  Keep working on creating your own brand. Maintaining your uniqueness is important!” 

Emcee Sylvia

Event Service Professional

Kelly Loh

“My favourite part of my job is seeing how my voice and body language can interact with, move, entertain and bring joy and comfort to the audience while contributing to the success of an event. It pushes me to learn new things across various topics and industries so that I can best present the information given to me; I’m always learning something new!

In my first job as a community engagement executive in the Restroom Association (Singapore), I had to conduct assembly talks about 3 times a week to schools all around Singapore, encouraging them to practise good toilet etiquette. 

I must have done hundreds of such talks in my two years there! I started to seek out hosting opportunities and would do so as a volunteer for other non-profit organisations, in small scale community events and for friends’ weddings.

Covid-19 has made it challenging for everyone in the events industry. As emcees, we have to adapt to presenting in virtual/hybrid events, working the camera and interacting with the online audience when we cannot see their physical response. 

As a new mum, I definitely appreciate online events more during this period as I have the opportunity to work from home where I am nearer to my baby. 

However, as with everyone else’s WFH situation, it is challenging to manage the needs of individual family members (especially a baby!) while working when all of us are in the same space. I too, need the help of my spouse and family members to attend to my baby so that I can be undisturbed when hosting from home.  

My advice to those interested in this industry would be: listen, to understand first, before giving any reply; know that your words have power and be empathetic to your audience and client. Enrich yourself by reading and listening widely; write, so that you can learn to have clarity in thought. When preparing for shows and during hosting, take your time, but don’t waste your time.”

Kelly Loh

“My mother noticed that I was very expressive since kindergarten – I could memorise the entire Lion King script and had my toys re-enact the movie while voice acting for each character – and sent me for speech and drama lessons during my primary school years.”

Event Service Professional

Jeremy Yeo TM

“During the beginning days of my emcee career, I experienced a great sense of insecurity.  I’d question my self-worth when a client picked another emcee, or I’d be jealous that someone else got a job which I wasn’t available for. 

However over the years, I’ve met many big-hearted and generous industry peers who’d share their shows with me, give me tips on how to improve my craft and even support me at my shows. That was how I had a mindset shift to share the love too. Even right now, when a client picks another emcee, I’d be genuinely happy for them, because the ultimate importance is having them get the most suitable candidate for the project. 

I reckon some best moments are when I get to share the stage with celebrities.  Actually the best moments are when we are backstage, seeing the human side of being a celeb. And I can vouch for them, many of these celebs, DJs, singers, artists are VERY PLEASANT and FRIENDLY off stage. 

My worst moment though: once I had a pimple on my chin. I applied concealer and another layer of foundation right before hosting a corporate team-building dinner.  However, minutes before I had to go on the mic, the pimple popped and the blood couldn’t stop flowing! Thankfully one of the part timers had a plaster on him. And yes, I had to keep the plaster on throughout the entire show. 

I cannot pinpoint one particular event that I’m proudest of, but generally, being able to pull off a massive event – backed by an amazing team of Event Organisers, AV Crew, Stage Hands, etc will spark an incredible sense of achievement. The best reward to that would be to get the job again the next year!” 

Jeremy Yeo TM

“Be nice to everyone. You may be the one on stage and in the limelight, but it takes a TEAM off stage to run the show WITH you.”

We were moved by Emcee Jeremy’s story on our newest post today!

Event Service Professional

Jackie Lin

“When I left my job as a financial planner to be an emcee, one of the seniors in the industry asked me: what kind of emcee do you want to be? 

I pictured a successful event: I saw people gathered in a crowd, drinking, laughing, cheering and most importantly, smiling genuinely.  I saw the participants thank me for helping them make it happen. So I told myself that THAT would be the crowd I wanted to create. However, I forgot about that until I hosted a friend’s company’s D&D later that year. 

It was a tough crowd to manage and quite a rough evening. However, as the night went on, I was able to rally them into high spirits, merrymaking and having fun with each other. My worries were eased as the CEO said it was “the most energetic and enthusiastic participation” she had seen from her staff. After I closed the show, the committee members came up to me excitedly and thanked me for hosting their event. 

It was then that I recalled my early aim. The feelings and emotions were exactly the ones I had imagined and I felt I had achieved a milestone in my fledgling career.

I’ve been very fortunate to have parents who do not worry about my career and leave me to build one for myself. My girlfriend has been most supportive and encouraging, even though I was making next to nothing in the early days.

Aside from the tight wallet before I had a steady stream of jobs, one of the struggles was to establish a presence in the industry.  As a greenhorn, it was tough to find opportunities as I had no showreel. Most jobs came by because the first and second choices were unavailable, so they became extra valuable as I had to set a good first impression and collect footage to promote myself. 

There are 2 aspects to any endeavour: skills and business.  With skills, I would encourage an enthusiast to find or create a role model so they have an ideal to strive towards, instead of growing aimlessly. We must know our purpose so we can deliver excellence and more!

As for business, I tell my mentees to take any opportunity possible to make new friends and connections, even if it’s just a hi-and-bye relationship. As the cliché goes: Your network is your net worth.”

Jackie Lin (Emcee Jacks)

“The best moments I love are the moments when I come up with a clever joke that gets my audience to burst out laughing”.  Check out the rest of @emceejack ‘s story in our newest post!

Event Service Professional

Rizal K

“My love for music and entertainment led me into the nightlife industry. It has since been 20 years of DJ-ing! Eventually, being a perfectionist led me into backstage work as I like to make sure everything runs smoothly. 

4 years ago, I founded Pandemic. At Pandemic, we have a collective of DJs for hire, sound system and lights for rental and a 24 hours jamming studio for DJs to have a space to practice when they have a creative spark. 

My proudest moment is sharing the console with US DJ Cashmoney at Zouk Singapore. When l was taking over from DJ Cashmoney, we were using 2 different consoles and 2 different mixers. He and l had to be very careful when mixing my music onto his. When l fully turned up my volume, he cut his. From our booth, it sounded perfect! We were so happy, we cheered and high-fived each other. Suddenly we realized the whole dance floor was just standing around and the crowd was booing at us. We stood there in shock, not knowing what went wrong.

Then, the tech guys rushed in, did a quick check and found out that the master volume was completely turned down. Only then did we realize that DJ Cashmoney’s headphone cable had gotten caught with the master volume knob by accident! We both had a very good laugh.

Music is always evolving. And as a DJ, l need to follow what’s current to cater to the crowd even though it might not be to my liking. 

As with any other trade, there are bound to be market spoilers. Throughout my 20 years, I have been affected many times by these people be it in DJ-ing or events set up. However, it is with hard work, dedication and always performing at my best that l’ve managed to make it through without having to bring my value down.”

Rizal K aka DJ Raw

Event Service Professional

Jane Woon

“One of my big struggles has been being a woman in the entertainment industry. In particular, there’s a lot of misjudgement of female DJs – often, female DJs are judged by their looks rather than their quality or skill set. To counter it, I always try to keep myself updated with the latest news and knowledge. Also, I love to patch my own equipment because it enables me to be independent and troubleshoot any issues on my own even if there aren’t any sound assistants on-site.

I love what I do because every event is a brand new adventure! I’ve had amazing moments like getting to be one of the music directors of the SEA Games in 2015 and the 8th ASEAN Para Games and I’ve also had experiences at the other end of the spectrum – once I played in a venue which had a power failure almost every ten minutes!”

Jane Woon / DJ Cherish

1) What kind of misjudgment of Females DJs would you like to highlight?
Often, female DJs have been judged by their looks rather than their quality and skillset.

2) what have you done to counter it, or how have you stay positive in the face of it?
I would always try to keep myself updated with the latest news and knowledge. Personally, I love to patch my own equipments. This enables me to troubleshoot any occurring  issues and at the same time, be independent on my own even if there isn’t any sound assistants on site available.

For 8th ASEAN PARA GAMES (Hockey) & 28th SEA Games 2015 (Squash). Each dj was in-charge of different games