Chance for local acts to share stage with international artists

Mr Tim Kek's (above) Symmetry Entertainment and Moonbeats Asia have organised gigs by British indie pop group Superorganism (left), among others, in Singapore.
Mr Tim Kek's Symmetry Entertainment and Moonbeats Asia have organised gigs by British indie pop group Superorganism (above), among others, in Singapore.PHOTO: SYMMETRY ENTERTAINMENT
Mr Tim Kek's (above) Symmetry Entertainment and Moonbeats Asia have organised gigs by British indie pop group Superorganism (left), among others, in Singapore.
Mr Tim Kek's (above) Symmetry Entertainment and Moonbeats Asia have organised gigs by British indie pop group Superorganism, among others, in Singapore.PHOTO: SYMMETRY ENTERTAINMENT

SYMMETRY ENTERTAINMENT AND MOONBEATS ASIA

Symmetry Entertainment founder and Moonbeats Asia co-founder Tim Kek, 27, feels that as a promoter, it is important for him to represent the sort of music he personally enjoys when bringing shows in.

"Without the heart, I wouldn't know how to properly sell the event or the artist," he says.

Last year, he arranged for Norwegian indie pop-rock artist Boy Pablo, American post-rock band This Will Destroy You and British indie pop group Superorganism, among others, to perform here.

He started the company seven years ago while on a gap year before he was due to enter university in Britain. "I put together some events for artists I enjoyed listening to but that no one was bringing in to play shows here, although they were constantly going to other Asian countries like Japan and Thailand."

His first shows were with British DJ-producer Star Slinger and American indie rock group Beach Fossils at the now-defunct Home Club in Upper Circular Road.

Since "cold e-mailing bands, agents and managers" in the early days, he has gone on to stage fairly large-scale shows, like that of Icelandic folk-pop band Of Monsters and Men at The Coliseum, Hard Rock Hotel, in 2016. More than 4,000 people attended the show.

 
 
 

Since niche acts have been made more accessible by promoters like him over the years, he has noticed a younger crowd at some of his shows.

The live music experience is also trickling down to the next generation. "Sometimes, we even see parents bringing their kids and enjoying the music together," he adds.

With the platform he has, Mr Kek is also conscious of having local artists share the stage with international bands, as this exposes people to more local music.

For instance, local "bedroom pop" crooner Shye opened for Superorganism at their Jan 11 show.

"It also provides the local act with the opportunity to learn from and, hopefully, take note of the professionalism of these international bands who are used to touring and performing around the world," he says.

Ultimately, he says it is important for him "to create a safe space for young Singaporeans to come out to enjoy music, and pave the way for the next generation to inject their creativity into the robust scene of Singapore, as I did".

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 07, 2019, with the headline 'Chance for local acts to share stage with international artists'. Print Edition | Subscribe