Saturday, July 17, 2010

Night Festival 2010 Review (Singapore)

The Night Festival 2010 held in Singapore on the 16th and 17th of July is going on right now, and there seemed to be a series of interesting events happening.

Venue: National Museum of Singapore

Paraboles 2.0

Paraboles 2.0 is a very interesting show with 6 giant satellite dishes right in front of the National Museum. The sounds and experience is pretty surreal and interesting.

There are many other interesting Exhibits at the National Museum of Singapore and the guided audio tour on the second floor is definite worth the wait.

Venue: Singapore Art Museum

At the Singapore Art Museum, there are many interesting displays. Many interactive art which even children could participate, and some adult themed entertainment.

The Abusement Park

Singapore Art Museum is turned into an underground dungeon where instruments of pain become a form of entertainment. Along with music and dance, it is rather interesting, but very popular!


More information on the Night Festival 2010 Event Can be found here.


My thoughts.

I've attended many night arts festival in Montreal, France and London, and I felt that this one in Singapore is particularly weak, not only for the choice of displays, the whole organization seemed a little poor. There seem to be a main draw to the Singapore Museum, where the crowds gather, and queues are very long.

I expected some street performances, or even street magic shows within SMU, but alas, since Singapore is such a "restricted" country, I guess there was not enough time to get the necessary permits for ad hoc performances to happen when you walk from one venue to another.

I have asked the shops/Food and Beverage locations about the Night Festival 2010 a week ago, and no one knew much about it. On the actual day, I'm sure ALL the Restaurants and bars would close early, and there is not much other support other than a restaurant/bar that is located at the National Museum. (The bar does sell beer) Many locations close around midnight or 11pm except the bars.

The whole experience seemed to be not very inclusive. There are lots of loud music, and performance targeted at teens, however, there are not much "street stores" selling beverages other than beer. Is everyone expected to drink?

With the road closures, and lots of people who are directing traffic, there seemed to be very little extra lighting. Much of Campus Green is very dark, and navigation is hard. The lack of signs is also troubling.

Lack of Public Transportation Support. The Bras Basah Station is right there, and since the festival is happening till 2am, it would be nice for trains to run till 3am perhaps. Even at 15 minutes a train, I would still think that the people attending the Night Festival could get home easier. There are not really any form of public transportation after midnight (Other than the overpriced Taxi)

Basically, I think many of the other Night Festivals end REALLY REALLY late, and for Singapore, 7pm - 2am feels a little short, as I do not have much time to see anything else after visiting National Museum and watching Paraboles. Thought it is a 2 day event, I felt that the museums should be opened till 7am, where people can have more time to enjoy the performances, and later visit the museums at their own leisure through the night!

-- Robin Low

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