Deepika Shetty Arts Correspondent recommends

Sifas Festival, Ophelia at the studios and more

PHOTOS: SIFAS, CAKE THEATRICAL PRODUCTIONS, GILLMAN BARRACKS, COURTESY OF DRUV KENT

SIFAS FESTIVAL OF INDIAN CLASSICAL MUSIC AND DANCE

The annual festival by the Singapore Indian Fine Arts Society (Sifas), now in its 14th edition, opens next week.

It will present five concerts at the Esplanade by artists from India and daily performances at the Sifas Auditorium. More than 50 Singapore and regional artists will perform at the two-week festival. A highlight is Hari Shringara - Songs Of Love

And Longing (main photo), an odissi performance by dancers Surupa Sen and Bijayini Satpathy. The duo, from India's Nrityagram school of dance, bases the production on poet Jayadeva's 12th-century romantic ballad, Gita Govinda.

WHERE: 1 Esplanade Drive, Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay; 2A Starlight Road, Sifas Auditorium MRT: City Hall/Farrer Park WHEN: March 24 to April 10, various times ADMISSION: $25 to $40 for concerts at Esplanade from Sistic (go to www.sistic.com.sg or call 6348-5555). Concerts at the Sifas Auditorium are free INFO: Call 6299-5929 or go to sifas.org


OPHELIA AT THE STUDIOS

Cake Theatrical Productions gives a twist to the tragedy Hamlet. In Shakespeare's play, Ophelia is an almost powerless character, controlled by her father and brother, and bound for the arms of future husband Hamlet. In this production, writer-director Natalie Hennedige makes her the heart and soul of the piece. Theatre veteran Jo Kukathas, 52, who plays Ophelia, is pitted against a much younger Hamlet, played by Thomas Pang (both above), 25. The setting is a rehearsal of a play in which Hamlet is the director and Ophelia the actor. This approach allows for an intense exploration of the complex emotions that underline Hamlet and gives a whole new twist to the phrase "to be or not to be".

WHERE: 1 Esplanade Drive, Esplanade Theatre Studio MRT: City Hall WHEN: Today, 8pm; tomorrow, 3 and 8pm ADMISSION: $35 from Sistic INFO: www.esplanade.com/thestudios


ART DAY OUT! AT GILLMAN BARRACKS

At the day version of art enclave Gillman Barracks' popular Art After Dark series, several galleries are presenting new shows and there are talks, workshops as well as stalls selling food and drinks. You can also peek into artists' studios at the NTU Centre for Contemporary Art. For visitors who prefer a guided tour, volunteer docents will lead the Gillman Barracks Art & History Tour. There is also a History & Heritage tour that traces the barracks' evolution from British military base to visual arts precinct.

WHERE: 9 Lock Road, Gillman Barracks MRT: Labrador Park WHEN: Tomorrow, 2 to 7pm. Art & History Tour at 4.30 to 6pm, History & Heritage tour at 5 to 6pm ADMISSION: Free. Register at gillmanbarracks.com/tours


DRUV KENT LIVE

Druv Kent (above) left a high-flying corporate job to become a full- time singer-songwriter.

After a sell-out show at the Esplanade Recital Studio, the Singapore-based artist presents his next act at Victoria Theatre tomorrow. Trained in Indian classical music, he soon gravitated to the likes of British rock bands Pink Floyd and Dire Straits. Fans can expect a mix of familiar hits and songs from his soon-to-be released debut album, About Time.

WHERE: 9 Empress Place, Victoria Theatre MRT: City Hall/Raffles Place WHEN: Tomorrow, 7.30pm ADMISSION: $58 from Sistic

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 18, 2016, with the headline 'Arts Picks'. Print Edition | Subscribe