Got To Move festival launches app, dance challenge

Dancers at the launch of Got To Move, the third edition of which will feature a bumper crop of 227 programmes for the public.
Dancers at the launch of Got To Move, the third edition of which will feature a bumper crop of 227 programmes for the public.ST PHOTO: JONATHAN CHOO

Nationwide dance movement Got To Move is turning to social media and apps to get more Singaporeans on their feet.

The third edition of the movement by the National Arts Council will run from Oct 13 to 29, with 227 programmes for the public, up from 200 last year.

Got To Move will begin with an islandwide assortment of programmes, such as a multi-generational barn-dancing workshop, as well as a new mobile app by software firm Telematique that uses location augmentation to help users see what dance events are happening around them and if there are fellow dancers in their vicinity. It also introduces them to 360-degree videos on dance.

"People lack opportunities to understand dance," says Telematique principal consultant Kace Ong, who has taught tango for 20 years. "With this app, the public can go from being observers to being participants."

The public can also take part in the Happy Dance Challenge by uploading a video clip of themselves dancing on social media with the hashtag #GotToMoveSG and then tagging their friends. They stand to win prizes, which the organisers have yet to confirm.

The use of social media platforms will enable dancer Deanna Dzulkifli, one of Got To Move's 14 ambassadors, to connect with the movement even while overseas.

The 19-year-old School of the Arts graduate became an ambassador to share her story of returning to dance after spinal fusion surgery .

Next week, she will leave to study arts management at Goldsmiths, University of London. But she hopes to stay in touch with Got To Move through the Happy Dance Challenge.

"There are a lot of young dancers facing physical impairments and I want them to know they can still be part of the arts scene."

The festival will culminate in Got To Move Spotlight, an interactive dance carnival held on Oct 29 in conjunction with Car-Free Sunday.

It will include a dance-walk, a series of dance and fitness activities from the National Gallery to the Esplanade Park, in collaboration with government agency ActiveSG, which promotes sports.

The National Arts Council will add two pop-up dance events, a family-oriented one in March and another for students in June, which will coincide with its other initiatives, such as Arts In Your Neighbourhood.

Ms Elaine Ng, the council's senior director of sector development for performing arts, says: "While we have seen an increase in participation over the years, we saw the need to deepen our engagement with specific demographic segments and sustain interest in dance beyond the movement."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 16, 2017, with the headline 'Got To Move festival launches app, dance challenge'. Subscribe