Dramatic touches for arts fest
A 50-HOUR performance piece by celebrated Indian artist Nikhil Chopra about India's fight against colonialism, and a four-day journey through 20th-century music by the London Sinfonietta and the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory Orchestra.
These are some of the dramatic finishing touches to the Singapore International Festival of Arts' inaugural edition from Aug 12 to Sept 21.
Festival director Ong Keng Sen, 50, announced yesterday the final six productions of the $6.5 million festival.
Performance artist Chopra's sprawling piece, titled Give Me Your Blood And I Will Give You Freedom, will map out stark landscapes of black ink onto a white canvas, a metaphor for a dark and bloody battle.
Classical music lovers can take their pick of a series of concerts spread over four days that outline a musical journey from 19th-century composers, the likes of Claude Debussy, to present-day creators such as James MacMillan and Tom Ades.
It is presented by London's Southbank Centre and will be performed by the London Sinfonietta and the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory Orchestra.
The festival's theme of Legacy and the Expanded Classic is perhaps most apparent in The Chorus; Oedipus, where South Korean director Seo Jae Hyung reinvents the myth of King Oedipus by putting a musical spin on the classic Greek tragedy. The song-filled adaptation was first performed to sell-out crowds in Seoul.
Some of the more intimate shows include Belgian artist Miet Warlop's Mystery Magnet, a psychedelic, surreal work at the intersection of visual art and theatre; a double-bill by South African artists Mamela Nyamza and Mojisola Adebayo tackling the violent proliferation of "corrective" hate rape in their country; and young Iranian playwright Amir Reza Koohestani's theatre debut here, Amid The Clouds.
The festival is bookended by two blockbuster shows: celebrated British composer Michael Nyman's opera, Facing Goya, and New York experimental theatre company The Wooster Group's postmodern take on Shakespeare's Troilus & Cressida.
THE STRAITS TIMES