Tharman sings as self-taught pianist plays Teresa Teng's classic, 'The Moon Represents My Heart'

He said he couldn't help singing along with it when he heard the familiar tune being played.

Daniel Seow | August 02, 2023, 11:59 AM



Tharman Shanmugaratnam may not know MBTI or his personality type, but he certainly knows the lyrics to Chinese pop classic, "The Moon Represents My Heart" ("月亮代表我的心").

The presidential hopeful posted a July 31 TikTok of himself singing along to the evergreen song, as an elderly man played the tune on the public piano at the Heartbeat@Bedok community hub.

He was also accompanied by his wife, Jane Yumiko Ittogi, who has been accompanying her husband and hitting the media trail.

The performance

In the caption of the video, Tharman wrote that he couldn't resist joining in as he heard the familiar strains of the song.

"Heard 月亮代表我的心 (The Moon Represents My Heart) in the air… and found this self-taught pianist enjoying himself at Heartbeat@Bedok. Couldn’t help singing along," he shared.

@tharman.sgHeard 月亮代表我的心 (The Moon Represents My Heart) in the air…and found this self-taught pianist enjoying himself at Heartbeat@Bedok. Couldn’t help singing along.♬ 月亮代表我的心 - Teresa Teng

In the video, he sang a full verse of the song without missing a beat, while the pianist played enthusiastically, seemingly immersed in the piece.

After a while, the man stopped playing, seemingly not confident in finishing the song.

The two then had a brief exchange, with Tharman showing his appreciation for his performance, as the small crowd around them clapped.

In the footsteps of past presidents?

If Tharman succeeds in his presidential bid, he won't be the first Singapore president to show an affinity for the classic, which was popularised by Taiwanese singer Teresa Teng in 1977.

That honour goes to a former president Ong Teng Cheong, who famously performed a rendition of the hit song during the 1999 President’s Star Charity show.

During the show, Ong stepped up on stage to personally deliver the piano performance, accompanied by MediaCorp artistes Kym Ng and Evelyn Tan.

That performance has become a moment in television history that audiences have come to recall when they talk about Ong.

This isn't the first time Tharman has shown his affinity for the arts, as he is recognised as one of the vocal proponents of the domain.

The ex-Senior Minister sang a P Ramlee song, "Getaran Jiwa", at the groundbreaking ceremony for the Geylang Serai Cultural Belt on June 10.

He is also a published poet.

As Education Minister from 2003 to 2008, he was an advocate for students to try new subjects and explore their diverse talents by offering more flexibility and choices in schools.

Top image from on TikTok.