Preview Guide

Fringe Festival Fiesta!

By Dawn LeeEvents - 04 January 2011 1:39 PM | Updated 1:48 PM

Fringe Festival Fiesta!

Music, dance, theatre, and mixed media – it’s impossible to catch every performance at the first major arts festival of the year, so inSing has highlighted some of the ones you won’t want to miss!


Education or indoctrination? This year’s festival seeks to explore the dual roles of art and everything in between.

“The quote on our website encapsulates the whole festival theme of art and education, ‘Art teaches nothing except the significance of life’,” explain artistic co-directors Haresh Sharma and Alvin Tan, “It is time we take stock of the relationship between art and education in Singapore's art scene. We have seen the arts growing exponentially in Singapore. But what about local art-making processes? This year’s festival aims to bring the audience’s attention to that.”

With that, here are some of the highlights of this year’s festival.

 

THEATRE

The Ma(r)king of Nanjing

Nelson Chia

This is the third and final instalment of Chia’s Nanjing 1937 project. The first two, Nanjing: 1937 and Nanjing 1937 Phase II, were solo performances based on existing historical texts and contemporary responses to the Nanjing Massacre, both from Chinese and Japanese perspectives. This year, Chia reads the Nanjing Massacre as an outsider, ie the artist’s encounter with the subject, so the spotlight is not just on the event itself, but also of the education of the artist in his own art-making process. Whether or not you’re an East Asian history buff, this is set to be an enlightening and riveting performance you’re sure to remember.

Date: January 7 and 8, 2011
Time: 8pm
Venue: Gallery Theatre, National Museum of Singapore
Tickets; $19/$30

 

The Mar(r)king of Nanjing

 

Model Citizens

Model Citizens

The Necessary Stage

If you missed this critically acclaimed play in 2010, don’t fret. It’s back for another run at this year’s Fringe. The story kicks off after a man stabs a Minister of Parliament (MP)at a Meet-the-People session, with its focus on three central female characters: the man’s girlfriend, an Indonesian maid who wants to be come a Singapore citizen, the MP’s wife, and the maid’s employer.

“The play explores questions such as how personal relationships are entangled with class gender, ethnicity, nationality and linguistic issues and the challenges we face trying to transcend all of these,” explain Sharma and Tan, “Ultimately, the audience member will be made to wonder if it’s the lack of political will, or a lack of empathy that makes it difficult for us to reach out to one another.”

Date: January 11 to 15, 2011
Time: 8pm (with a matinee show at 3pm on January 15)
Venue: Gallery Theatre, National Museum of Singapore
Tickets: $19/$30

 

DANCE

Orpheus Marathon

Ferenc Fehér

This is the Asian premiere of the dance transposition of the Orpehus and Eurydice myth by Ferenc Fehér. The Hungarian choreographer explores the complex and tragic relationship between a passionate man and an imprisoned woman, juxtaposing complex, freestyle dance and confined movements highlight the gulf between passion and loneliness. With its immediately recognisable storyline, this dance performance is sure to thrill dance newbies and aficionados alike.

Date: January 12 and 13, 2011
Time: 8pm
Venue: Esplanade Theatre Studio
Tickets: $19/$30

 

Orpheus Marathon

 

School of Hard Knocks

 

INSTALLATION

School of Hard Knocks

The Little Dröm Store

Miss the playgrounds of days of yore? Well, so did the guys behind The Little Dröm Store. Based on the notion that playgrounds were places where children fell, picked themselves up and first learnt life’s important lessons, this installation is not just a nostalgic revisit to playgrounds of the past. It also questions the rationale behind the demolishment of these often locally-designed playgrounds to make way for “safer” ones sold by international suppliers. Take your children or little nieces and nephews there for an eye-opening experience.

Date: January 5 – 23, 2011
Time: 5.45am – 12.15am
Venue: Esplanade Tunnel
Tickets: Admission is free

 

The M1 Singapore Fringe Festival is on from 5-16 January. At various locations. Visit http://www.singaporefringe.com/ for more information.