With a garden picnic under the stars to boot

Lively performances, music and plenty of activities are coming to—of all places—the void deck of Blk 7 Telok Blangah Crescent and the nearby grass field beside SAFRA Mount Faber. With all that pizzazz, it’s hard to imagine that this entire effort is actually dedicated to the very somber topic of, well, life and death.

Both Sides, Now, happening Jun 29-Jul 7, first started back in 2013 as a community engagement project that aims to normalise end-of-life conversations through the arts. After several evolutions through the years, it has now reached its final stage of metamorphosis and culminating as a massive event in Telok Blangah.

It kicks off with a Public Arts Installation on Jun 29, where the works of several Singaporean artists in addition to some from residents of Blk 7 Telok Blangah Crescent will be on showcase at their very own void deck, enlivening the usually dead space.

As part of the installation, the artists will be offering guided tours on select days (Jun 30, Jul 6-7). There will also be a puppetry performance (Jun 29-30) there, about an elderly couple struggling to make end-of-life decisions, told from the point of view of a stray cat.

Then starting Jul 3, celebrate your mortality at a Carnival happening at the open field next to SAFRA Mount Faber. For the first hundred people to arrive each day, free picnic mats and snacks will be provided. But feel free to bring your own picnic basket loaded with goodies to enjoy as you simply bask under the night sky.

There’s plenty happening at the Carnival grounds, including activities that guide you to reflect on what it means to live well (and leave well), engaging exhibitions housed within an inflatable featuring works from Chong Pang residents and local artists, a musical telling the story of caregivers and their patients, and an interactive play exploring the situations faced when confronting our dying loved ones.

Come with an open mind, a cheery heart and plenty of tissues—we think this will be one event where we’ll be having plenty of fun one moment, and tearing uncontrollably the next.

Both Sides, Now happens Jun 29-Jul 7 at Blk 7 Telok Blangah Crescent and the grass field next to SAFRA Mount Faber.