Multiple disciplines for the price of one
Multiple disciplines for the price of one
- By SG-Promoted
- | Apr 29, 2019
With May just around the corner, it can only mean one thing: Festival season is upon us. The Singapore International Festival of Arts (SIFA) season, that is; the annual pinnacle arts festival returns for its 42nd year from May 16-Jun 2, alongside crowd favourite initiatives like last year’s Festival House. And once again, there’s so much in store.
This year, the focus shifts to multi-disciplinary performances, boldly marrying the genres of theatre, music, dance, film and visual arts. Perhaps you’ve already picked out your tickets since the line-up went live in February—but if you need a little help scouring the festival guide, here are five more to add to your list.
The Mysterious Lai Teck (May 17-19)
This exclusive SIFA commission fuses theatre and tech, in a transfixing performance that’s part history and part fictional speculation. Acclaimed Singaporean artist Ho Tzu Nyen—whom you might recognise from his seminal work One or Several Tigers—creates a portrait of Lai Teck, leader of the Malayan Communist Party in the ‘40s, a triple agent, and one of Southeast Asia’s most shadowy historical figures. Dipping liberally into the gaps in Lai Teck’s incomplete story, the show offers a rare window into Southeast Asia in the Age of Treason, through inventive staging and visual projections.
ST/LL (May 24-25)
Masterminding ST/LL is Japanese artist Shiro Takatani from artist collective Dumb Type, who has designed a meditation on stillness and silence against the backdrop of an ambient score contributed by Ryuichi Sakamoto—Takatani’s long-time collaborator. This hypnotic staging—a mix of multimedia, lighting, movement and sound—stretches perceptions of time and space, leading audiences into poetic shape-shifting dimensions. The performance-installation is truly where creative ingenuity runs wild onstage. The exquisite multimedia staging brings together a dinner table of guests, dramatic swathes of black, free-falling cutlery, and an endless veil of water to tie the visual mystique together.
Korper (May 31-Jun 1)
Regard the body like you never have before, in Berlin dance-maker Sasha Waltz’s progressive work Korper. In investigating the structure of the body against the mortality of human existence, Waltz presents a series of living tableaux—where her 12 dancers are made to be stacked like human walls, weighed and measured; the body exposed in all its corporeality. Witness unexpected links between the body and architecture, science and history, physically manifested in this masterful analysis of something we take for granted everyday.
A Dream Under the Southern Bough: Reverie (May 31-Jun 2)
Less of a genre-blender but no less revolutionary is A Dream Under the Southern Bough: Reverie. In the second installment of this three-part Festival Commission, Toy Factory Productions continues its ambitious contemporary adaptation of the Ming Dynasty opera. Treading the thin line between living and dreaming, last year’s premiere of the play’s first five chapters set up a lyrical prelude to the grand dream. This year, watch as disgraced naval officer Chun Yu Fen is, in his slumber, thrust into the Ant Kingdom, where he finds himself the newly appointed governor of the Southern Bough and betrothed to the Kingdom’s princess. All would be fine and great—if trouble weren’t just around the corner.
Crowd (Jun 1-2)
This next dance-theatre work takes a deep dive into the human condition today. French choreographer-director Gisele Vienne creates arresting visual anarchy onstage, through the emotionally volatile bodies of 15 young dancers. Inspired by the techno rave scene of 1990s Berlin, the performance is set in an open-field party; the 15 revelers surface their buried inner narratives to a soundtrack of electronic dance music, techno anthems and violent rhythmic distortions.
SIFA 2019 takes place from 16 May – 2 June with a captivating line-up of some of the best theatre, dance, music and film from Singapore and around the world. Enjoy up to 25% ticket savings with the attractive packages and deals. For more info on the festival, visit www.sifa.sg