Sixty-five-year-old Kian Chuan is a common sight at Marine Parade Central, playing with his erhu and singing loudly. The bachelor doesn’t play only in that area; during Chinese New Year, he attracts crowds in Chinatown and on other times, you can also catch him in Bedok. He shared that he has been doing this for 20 years, and he was from the Hokkien Chinese Opera Troupe, which he was in for five years. He plays daily and leaves at around 2pm. “I love music and I love the erhu,” he says. He also knows how to play the flute.
Kian Chuan added that he is a licenced busker and every two years, he is required to sit for a music test for him to carry on playing legally. Earning money is his main reason for continuing to play this long, as he is responsible for taking care of his 93-year-old mother and the house, while his sister pays for a helper to care for their mother. Some who pass by drop money in his box, while some others go the extra mile in buying food for him.