The worst-kept secret in the radio industry here is out: Popular DJs Glenn Ong and The Flying Dutchman have joined SPH Radio station ONE FM 91.3. They had left MediaCorp within two weeks of each other at the end of last year.
Ong and The Flying Dutchman, whose real name is Mark Van Cuylenburg, revealed themselves on Monday morning as part of the station’s revamped morning show.
The revelation would not have surprised many radio listeners.
Since April, ONE FM has been holding a contest for listeners to guess the identity of the “megastar” DJ or DJs who will be joining the station as part of the new morning show. The winner will receive $10,000 in cash.
Many listeners picked Ong, 45, and Van Cuylenburg, 59, and the pair themselves have been dropping hints on their social media accounts and in recent press interviews.
Ong, for example, has been plugging ONE FM 91.3 on his Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts, while Van Cuylenburg talked about the station in a recent interview with The Straits Times Digital Life.
The ONE FM morning show was previously helmed by Andre Hoeden, Elliott Danker and Part-time Pete. Hoeden and Danker will join Ong and The Flying Dutchman as part of a four-man team.
Ong and Van Cuylenburg's new gig is particularly sweet for their fans as the duo, famed for their sharp, straight-talking style and cutting humour, co-hosted the morning show on MediaCorp’s Class 95FM for 10 years, from 2004 to 2013.
Ong says that his fans inspired his move to ONE FM 91.3: “My fiercely loyal listeners whom I meet everywhere I go, and those who follow me on my Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, all of them have been asking me to return to radio from the time I left MediaCorp because the current morning show there is juvenile and crappy.
“I told them I absolutely agree with them because those guys are used to entertaining seven-year-old kids. So when ONE FM kicked off in January they tuned in and immediately felt I would be a perfect fit for the station.”
He denies rumours that he is now drawing twice the salary that he was getting at MediaCorp, saying that money was never a factor. Instead, he likens his move to a “football superstar” who has been “acquired by another club in the transfer market”.
Van Cuylenburg says that he is not just looking forward to reuniting with Ong, but also to co-host the show with Hoeden and Danker.
“Glenn and myself, the chemistry was natural. It wasn’t something that was built up over time. I think the only thing that we need to develop that will not take very long is working with the other members of the crew. They’re such free-flowing guys, it’s not going to be difficult.”
He adds that listeners can expect to hear banter that is honest, funny and fun.
He says that he left MediaCorp last year to concentrate on his six business ventures in Singapore and Indonesia. He decided to take on the ONE FM gig only after he had settled the opening of his latest business, a beachfront restaurant-bar in Bintan, Indonesia.
Ong spent 19 years as a DJ with MediaCorp. Soon after leaving the broadcaster, he became a director at F&B and hospitality consulting firm Cir Vis, a position that he says he still holds today.
Both will also continue hosting live events outside of the morning radio show.
ONE FM 91.3, which started airing on January and plays music by acts like Aerosmith, Guns N’ Roses, Led Zeppelin, Nirvana and Queen, is SPH Radio’s newest English radio station. It replaced the company’s HOT FM91.3, which played contemporary pop music and targets men over 30 years old.