University Cultural Centre closed till March for upgrade

The arts complex on Kent Ridge Crescent includes the 1,700-seat UCC Hall used for the university's annual commencement ceremonies and NUS Arts Festival, among others.
The arts complex on Kent Ridge Crescent includes the 1,700-seat UCC Hall used for the university's annual commencement ceremonies and NUS Arts Festival, among others.SCREENGRAB: GOOGLE MAPS

Singapore - A key arts venue at the National University of Singapore (NUS) closed on Aug 14 for a six-month renovation. This is the first major upgrade for the University Cultural Centre (UCC) since it opened in September 2000.

The arts complex on Kent Ridge Crescent includes the 1,700-seat UCC Hall used for the university's annual commencement ceremonies and NUS Arts Festival, among others.

Other venues at UCC include the 455-seat Theatre and a 22m by 15m Dance Studio. All will be closed until March next year.

The NUS Museum, housed in the same building, will continue operating. The museum can be accessed via the Alice Lee Plaza connecting UCC to the adjoining Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music.

A spokesman for the NUS Centre for the Arts said the renovation has long been on the cards and includes work necessary to retain UCC's status as a premier arts venue. The refurbishment will generally improve the performance spaces and foyer and add a small function space.

Apart from university events, UCC has been used for national events such as the state funerals of former prime minister Lee Kuan Yew in 2015 and former president S R Nathan last year.

Venues at UCC are also often booked by external parties for lectures or performances of music, theatre, dance and even stand-up comedy. British funnyman Bill Bailey held a solo show at the UCC Hall last year and in 2015, the Singapore Writers Festival held a headline lecture from political philosopher Michael Sandel at the same venue.