Genevieve inspiring her audience with her songs.

Marc Tan

It was a Saturday evening concert with a difference for the parishioners of the Church of St Ignatius. Instead of just engaging the audience with a musical presentation, singer and song-writer Genevieve Toh captivated them with her melodious voice and shared her journey to find Christ.

Held at the church itself on Aug 11, Genevieve, was accompanied by a team of singers and musicians mostly from the parish, and her sister, Germaine Toh. The concert was in aid of the AHUVA Good Shepherd Children’s Home located at Marymount Centre, Toa Payoh Lorong 8.

Through 11 of her original compositions prefaced by some words of explanation, scripture and exhortation, Genevieve took her audience on her journey through her past four years.

Genevieve, who started out as a classical pianist, arrived in New York City in 2014 as her husband had found a job there.

She was drawn to the city’s vibrant music scene and set about writing her own music. Although she did not set out to be a Christian music artist, her earliest compositions already had a spiritual dimension.

As she related in her sharing, over time she overcame her early struggles and began to feel more relaxed as she learnt to rest in her increasing trust in Jesus. Her songs became more infused with her experience of her relationship with God.

She has found that music can be a source of healing and it is this healing that she wanted to share.

The titles of her songs give an idea of her faith journey: Famous, He Loves it When I Sing, High on the Mountain, I Will

Speak for You, and Abba (which she reminded the audience is more like “Daddy or Dada”)

In her own words:
Abba, Abba...
That’s who you are to me
I couldn’t earn it, I don’t deserve it
But your Grace made me your child

Her compositions ranged from energising rock anthems to quieter introspective acoustic ballads, with arrangements for full band with backup singers to solos where she accompanied herself on the piano.

Before moving to New York, Genevieve spent many years serving in the music ministry of St Ignatius Church. Many parishioners remember her leading the choir at the Saturday 6pm Mass.

Genevieve is a mother of two boys, aged 8 and 12. She has released two albums and also three singles.

Genevieve told Catholic News she had a “wonderful” and “spirit-anointed” experience performing this concert, especially with the “great collaboration of us all as brothers and sisters in Christ”. For her, the concert was not just about the music but the “faith journey behind the music”.

Genevieve was in Singapore to visit family members and friends and is expected to return to New York at the end of August.

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