5 things we love about the Aliwal Arts Night Crawl

One of the country’s most vibrant districts, Kampong Glam is the very definition of a place that has something for everyone. Whether it’s delving into the history and culture of Singapore’s Malay and Arab communities or immersing yourself in contemporary art, it’s the place to be⁠—and the best time to be there is during the Aliwal Arts Night Crawl, taking place on Jul 13.

Now in its seventh year, the Aliwal Arts Night Crawl—hosted by the Aliwal Arts Centre—takes you on a multi-disciplinary art adventure with a series of unique events and exhibitions that illuminate the enclave’s past and present. Here’s what you can look forward at this edition of the festival.

Captivating storytelling tours

, 5 things we love about the Aliwal Arts Night Crawl

Even if you think you know Kampong Glam like the back of your hand, the Aliwal Arts Night Crawl tours will help you see it in a different light. Highlights this year include the one-hour D’Tour, an excursion led by artist collective RSCLS that tells the history of the neighbourhood through its famed murals and street art, and In Search of the Gelam Tree, a 90-minute trip back in time hosted by storyteller Kamini Ramachandran which concludes with a traditional feast featuring native ingredients. 5pm, 6pm and 7pm (D’Tour); 5pm and 7:30pm (In Search of the Gelam Tree), various locations

Thought-provoking exhibitions

, 5 things we love about the Aliwal Arts Night Crawl

How can we best co-exist with the cats in our communities? What’s the significance of Kampong Glam’s street names; names that bring to mind images of locations across the Muslim world? How do we respect history while our nation develops? What was life like in Bronze Age Southeast Asia? These questions will all be answered in exhibitions and video installations at the Aliwal Arts Centre during the festival, presented by the likes of Teater Ekamatra and Ho Tzu Nyen. 1pm–10pm, various locations

The hands-on workshops

, 5 things we love about the Aliwal Arts Night Crawl

What would contemporary music sound like if it were accompanied by traditional Malay instruments? Find out for yourself at as:similation, curated by producer Evanturetime. Discover how native culture often gets forgotten or commodified through two workshops which allow you to experiment with music samples. 1pm–10pm (guided workshops at 4pm and 7pm), Aliwal Arts Centre Multi-Purpose Studio B

The diverse array of performances

, 5 things we love about the Aliwal Arts Night Crawl

Traditional music, poetry, spoken word, dance and opera—the Aliwal Arts Night Crawl manages to pack an incredible range of performances into a single night. Take your pick from Rentak Kita by NADI Singapura, a celebration of Malay drums and percussion instruments; Word Forward’s Kampong Glam: Past, Present and Virtual, where poets, singers and musicians take center stage; Wanton by the Singapore I-Lien Drama Society, a story of how small acts of kindness can change lives; Chance by Odyssey Dance Theatre, with choreography inspired by Kampong Glam’s community spirit; and a performance by New Opera Singapore. From 6:30pm, various locations

The hip night market

, 5 things we love about the Aliwal Arts Night Crawl

A market with a difference, So Gelam Market promises fun for the whole family with cool and creative stalls, traditional games and mouth-watering food. Expect nothing less than good, old-fashioned kampong vibes at So Gelam Market x Aliwal Arts Night Crawl. 3pm–10pm, Aliwal Street

For more information, head to the Aliwal Arts Centre website.