Singapore Night Festival turns 10 this year, to be held from Aug 18 to 26

Singapore Night Festival creative director Christie Chua presents the 10 returning artists at the media preview held at National Museum on July 12, 2017.
Singapore Night Festival creative director Christie Chua presents the 10 returning artists at the media preview held at National Museum on July 12, 2017. PHOTO: DIOS VINCOY JR FOR THE STRAITS TIMES
Singapore Night Festival creative director Christie Chua presents the 10 returning artists at the media preview held at National Museum on July 12, 2017.
Singapore Night Festival creative director Christie Chua presents the 10 returning artists at the media preview held at National Museum on July 12, 2017. PHOTO: DIOS VINCOY JR FOR THE STRAITS TIMES

Pole-dancing, Chinese drumming and pro-wrestling are some of diverse performances that festivalgoers can expect at the Singapore Night Festival this year from Aug 18 to 26.

The festival is in its 10th edition.

At a media preview held on Wednesday (July 12) at the National Museum of Singapore, 10 local artists, who had featured in past editions, shared their offerings at this year's festival.

Peranakan Sayang, Singapore's premier Peranakan performing group, will be entertaining with a repertoire of Peranakan songs.

Flamenco Sin Fronteras and Nawaz & Friends (Singapore) will bring together two different dance forms - flamenco, which is from Southern Spain, and kathak, an Indian classical genre.

The festival's creative director, Ms Christie Chua, says that these artists not only represent the diversity of Singapore's arts scene, but are also reflective of the journey that the festival has taken.

Festival director Angelita Teo adds that some of the artists have collaborated more than once with the festival. 

She says: "Over the years, they have also innovated themselves and returned to the festival with a different performance each time."

For instance, the group Starlight Alchemy started off as buskers but has since evolved to be stage performers and installation artists.

At this year's festival, the company will be putting up a geometric and reflective outdoor installation called The Flower Of Life And The Infinite Self, which is inspired by the work of American systems architect Buckminster Fuller and Dutch graphic artist M.C.Escher.

This year's festival will kick off on Aug 18 with Night Lights, a showcase of light art installation with performances, and culminate in three evenings of performances from Aug 24 to 26.  Previously, the performances took place over four evenings on two weekends.

Ms Teo said that with the new format, fans of the Night Lights installations can have more time to enjoy and take pictures of and with the installations, without feeling like they have to rush to catch the other performances.

The festival, which was introduced in 2008 to enliven the Bras Basah-Bugis precinct, an arts and heritage district, has grown over the years and enjoyed international coverage. In its first year, it had six partners and drew 60,000 people; in recent years, this has grown to about 70 partners and more than 500,000 attendees.

Looking ahead to the next 10 years, Ms Teo says that she hopes that the festival will continue to be a platform for innovation and creativity, especially for local talents.

"We want to promote a can-do spirit among our local talents."

Correction note: This story has been edited for clarity.