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Singapore Tatler

Singapore Tatler: How the Foundation for the Arts and Social Enterprise Supports Local Musicians

May 15, 2016 | In The News

Singapore’s former ambassador to Russia Michael Tay tells Grace Ma how his Foundation for the Arts and Social Enterprise supports talented local musicians in their quest for international success.

Acid jazz band The Steve McQueens has a musical journey that is the dream of all local bands. Talent-spotted by Jean-Paul “Bluey” Maunick in 2014, the quintet not only recorded an album produced by the legend but also opened for his UK jazz funk band Incognito in London’s The O2 Arena last May (a first for a Singapore band).

Their place in the spotlight is thanks to one man working in the shadows, Michael Tay, and the Foundation for the Arts and Social Enterprise that he established in 2013. Michael, who was Singapore’s ambassador to Russia from 2003 to 2008, started The Foundation as a private sector-led, non-profit platform to develop and promote the arts and socially-oriented projects in Singapore. It achieved charity status in September 2014.

“I wanted to spot and groom outstanding talent that would be the future icons of Singapore to represent us on the global stage,” says Michael, who also runs an investment consultancy. “If we don’t take a purposeful homegrown approach, we won’t be able to achieve that.”



Two local arts lovers Kris Tan and Michael Tay have individually set up arts foundations to support young, local musical talents, and through music, bring Singapore to the global stage.

The Straits Times: A Virtual Tribute To Ode To Joy

The Foundation is proud to be a supporting partner of Beethoven Im Garten 2020 with the German Embassy in Singapore. Due to the impact of COVID-19, this year’s concert in the park has taken on a digital incarnation. Read about the project in this article from official media partner, The Straits Times.

GMX Trio x The Steve McQueens

The Foundation for The Arts and Social Enterprise proudly presented GMX Trio's debut performance in Singapore at Voilah! Festival 2019 with a two-night, double-bill concert that also shone the spotlight on Singapore's very own neofuture jazz outfit The Steve McQueens....