Singapore International Festival of Arts

Singapore International Festival of Arts
16 May - 2 June @ various locations in Singapore
Phone: +65 9223 2570
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At SIFA 2019, The Arts House will once again be transformed into the Festival House.

With meaningful engagement opportunities from artists talks, workshops, discussions and the festival bar—House Pour, the Festival House breaks down the walls between artists and audiences to create unique experiences and inspiring artistic.


Beware of Pity

Schaubühne Berlin & Complicité (Germany/UK)

Thursday & Friday, 16 & 17 May 2019 - 7.30pm - 9.50pm @Esplanade Theatre
Tickets : $40*, $60*, $80

Stunningly told by one of UK’s most respected directors, Simon McBurney, with actors from the famed Schaubühne Berlin, Beware of Pity is an emotionally-gripping play about the treacherous nature of pity.


Suzuki Company of Toga & Purnati Indonesia (Japan/Indonesia)

Friday, 17 May 2019 - 8pm & Saturday, 18 May 2019 - 3pm & 8pm @Victoria Theatre
Tickets: $40, $60

From the hands of visionary director Tadashi Suzuki comes a masterful, cross-cultural adaptation of Greek tragedy, The Bacchae, featuring an impressive cast of Indonesian, Japanese and Chinese actors.

The Mysterious Lai Teck

Ho Tzu Nyen  (Singapore)

Friday - Saturday, 17 - 18 May 2019 - 8pm & Sunday, 19 May 2019 - 5pm & 8pm @SOTA Drama Theatre
Tickets: $40

In The Mysterious Lai Teck, acclaimed Singaporean artist Ho Tzu Nyen leads you into the labyrinthine underworld of spies, in this portrait of one of Southeast Asia’s most shadowy historical figures.

Peter and the Wolf

Silo Theatre (New Zealand)


Saturday- Monday, 18 - 20 May 2019 - 10am & 3pm @KC Arts Centre - Home of SRT
Tickets: $30, $40

A story of courage, adventure and friendship, this award-winning adaptation of Sergei Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf is a magical treat for young and old with music, puppetry and live animation.

In Conversation with Ho Tzu Nyen

Ho Tzu Nyen (Singapore)

Sunday, 19 May 2019 - 2pm @Blue Room, Festival House

Acclaimed Singaporean artist Ho Tzu Nyen makes films, installations and theatrical performances that often begin as engagements with historical and philosophical texts and artifacts.


curious directive (UK)

Tuesday-Friday, 21 - 24 May 2019 - 8pm & Saturday, 25 May 2019 - 2pm & 8pm & Sunday, 26 May 2019 - 1pm @SOTA Studio Theatre

Fusing a groundbreaking virtual reality experience with a thrilling murder mystery, FROGMAN by critically-acclaimed UK company curious directive takes you to the cutting edge of live storytelling today.


Bedtime Stories

Urland (The Netherlands)

Tuesday - Sunday, 21 - 26 May 2019 - 7.30pm @Secret venue

When was the last time someone told you a story under the stars? Let actor Thomas Dudkiewicz lead you into a strange and brilliantly dark world in Bedtime Stories, in an outdoor secret location. Inspired by radio plays, Bedtime Stories celebrates the art of the voice to bring to life an enchanting cast of characters.


One Day We’ll Understand

Sim Chi Yin (Singapore)

Friday & Saturday, 24 & 25 May 2019 - 7:30pm @Play Den, Festival House

One Day We’ll Understand takes photographer Sim Chi Yin’s family history as a point of departure and explores a largely hidden chapter of the Cold War in Southeast Asia, in what is today Malaysia and Singapore.

Displaced Persons’ Welcome Dinner

Checkpoint Theatre (Singapore)

Friday & Saturday, 24 & 25May 2019 - 8pm, Sunday, 26 May 2019 - 3pm @Victoria Theatre
Tickets: $40, $60

From critically-acclaimed theatre company Checkpoint Theatre comes Displaced Persons’ Welcome Dinner, a powerful new play about humanitarian workers caught in the crosshairs of a crisis.

A Legend Reimagined

Chong Tze Chien / The Finger Players (Singapore)

Saturday, 25 May 2019 - 11am @Living Room, Festival House

Tze Chien will talk about the rehearsal process, staging devices and demonstrate staging and puppetry concepts which the creative team is exploring. Join us to discover what goes into the making of a The Finger Players production.


Sasha Waltz & Hans Peter Kuhn (Germany)

Friday & Saturday, 31 May - 01 June 2019 - 8pm @Esplanade Theatre
Tickets: $40, $60, $80, $100

Berlin dance-maker Sasha Waltz’s provocative signature work, Körper, investigates the structure of the body against the mortality of human existence.

A Dream Under the Southern Bough: Reverie

Toy Factory Productions TOY(Singapore)

Friday & Saturday, 31 May &1 June 2019 - 8pm, Sunday, 2 june 2019 - 3pm @Drama Centre Theatre
Tickets: $40, $60

A naval officer, Chun Yu Fen ventures into his fantastical dream in the Ant Kingdom in this ambitious undertaking of adapting ming Dynasty playwright's Tang Xianzu's masterpiece onto the modern stage by Singaporean company Toy Factory.

Anticipating The Year of No Return: An Insight into the Creative Process

The Necessary Stage (Singapore)

Saturday, 01 June 2019 - 4pm @Living Room, Festival House

Get a glimpse into the creative process and research behind The Necessary Stage’s The Year of No Return, a Festival Commission for SIFA 2020. Co-written by Haresh Sharma and Rody Vera, and directed by Alvin Tan, the interdisciplinary production is an Asian collaboration featuring artists from Singapore, Malaysia, Japan andThe Philippines.


Gisèle Vienne (France)

Saturday & Sunday, 1 & 2 Jun 2019 - 8pm @Victoria Theatre
Tickets: $40, $60

Crowd is choreographer-director Gisèle Vienne’s deep dive into the dark side within us. Inspired by the techno rave scene of 1990s Berlin, 15 dancers create temporal distortions, alternate realities anddreamscapes, exposing the core of our “inner selves”.


We Can Dance

Daily tous les jours, featuring ScRach MarcS (Canada/Singapore)

Friday - Monday, 10 May - 2 Jun 2019 Daily, Various Timings @The Plaza, National Library Building

We Can Dance invites Singaporeans to transform their city walls into a collective dance!
This large-scale interactive installation, by Canadian artists Daily tous les jours, was inspired by an earlier creation called McLarena and explores the principle of a "canon" where performers reproduce in regular intervals parts of a song or choreography.


In Conversation with Sasha Waltz

Sasha Waltz (Germany)

Saturday, 01 June 2019 - 2pm @Blue Room, Festival House

This illuminating chat with Berlin-based choreographer Sasha Waltz, as she discusses her prolific career, diverse collaborations and approach in understanding the potential and multifarious dimensions of the human body.


100 Keyboards (Installation)

ASUNA (Japan)

Thursday - Sunday, 16 - 19 May 2019, Thurs 10am - 10pm, Fri & Sun 10am - 5pm, Sat 10am - 4pm @Gallery II, Festival House

Making its Singapore premiere at SIFA 2019, Japanese avant-garde sound artist ASUNA presents his landmark work and site-specific listening experience, 100 Keyboards. A stalwart of Tokyo's experimental music scene, ASUNA's playful genre-bending sonic experiments cross from ambient to hip-hop to low-fi pop and improvisation.


100 Keyboards (Performance)

ASUNA (Japan)

Friday-M0nday, 17 May - 20 May 2019, Fri, 8pm , Sat 7pm & 10pm , Sun 8pm , Mon 3pm @Gallery II, Festival House
Tickets: $20

Making its Singapore premiere at SIFA 2019, Japanese avant-garde sound artist ASUNA presents his landmark work and site-specific listening experience, 100 Keyboards. A stalwart of Tokyo's experimental music scene, ASUNA's playful genre-bending sonic experiments cross from ambient to hip-hop to low-fi pop and improvisation.

Oreste by Ifigenia

Tan Shou Chen and Ng Tian Hui (Singapore)

Saturday-Sunday. 25 - 26 May 2019 - Sat, 8pm - Sun, 5pm @Chamber, Festival House
Tickets: $20

Ifigenia gave herself to the sacrificial sword so the Greeks could launch their war against Troy. Saved by Artemis, she becomes the priestess for the city of Tauris. Now in charge, Ifigenia faces an impossible choices: follow the law and slay her unfortunate brother, Oreste, or summon everything she has to save her only kin.

Ryuichi Sakamoto - Fragments

with Shiro Takatani (Japan)

Tuesday, 28 May 2019 - 8pm @Esplanade Theatre Stage
Tickets: $150

Elegant, nuanced and profoundly moving, Ryuichi Sakamoto - Fragments is an intimate concert featuring two maestros, iconic composer and musician Ryuichi Sakamoto and Japanese multimedia artist, Shiro Takatani.


Bill Frisell Trio

featuring Rudy Royston & Thomas Morgan (USA)

Wenesday, 29 May 2019 - 8pm @Victoria Theatre
Tickets: $50 

From mellow jazz tones to gorgeous lyrical harmonies, Grammy-award winning composer and celebrated guitarist Bill Frisell triumphantly takes the stage in this Singapore premiere.

In Conversation with Bill Frisell

Bill Frisell (USA)

Thursday, 30 May 2019 - 7:30pm @Living Room, Festival House

With a celebrated career spanning over four decades, the Grammy-award winning guitarist and composer Bill Frisell is recognised as one of America’s most productive performing artists. A seminal figure in contemporary American musical history, Frisell’s musical style runs the gamut from jazz, bluegrass, country, rock and roll, to folk, to even the avant-garde.


Varsha (Singapore)

Saturday & Sunday, 1 & 2 Jun 2019 - 8pm @Play Den, Festival House
Tickets: $20 

Come witness virtuosity and joyful music-making with Varsha, an up-and-coming local group who blend their musical roots in the Indian culture with rhythmic music as the foundation for their compelling improvisations. Since their debut in 2014, Varsha has been pushing the boundaries of traditions with its synergy of styles, from jazz, classical Indian and popular Indian music.

Festival Closing Concert

with Singapore Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Joshua Tan

Sunday, 02 June 2019 - 6pm @The Shaw Foundation Symphony Stage

In this celebratory closing to SIFA 2019, this free concert welcomes back to Singapore leading vocalists Elena Wang, Julia Abueva, and Sean Ghazi to perform in an enchanted evening of musical tunes. SIFA is also delighted to present the Singapore Singapore Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Joshua Tan. This is a special opportunity to hear your favourite songs performed with a full orchestra.



Singular Screens

Curated by Asian Film Archive

Saturday-Sunday, 18 May - 2 Jun, Various timings @Oldham Theatre, National Archives of Singapore and Screening Room, Festival House
Tickets: $12*

Singular Screens, the film programme curated by the Asian Film Archive (AFA) for Singapore International Festival of Arts 2019 (SIFA), features a selection of films  celebrating independent and singular visions from Singapore and around the world. Valuing the ingenious and the risk-taking in cinema, Singular Screens is diverse in representation and bold in putting together its palette of cinematic adventures. Screenings will be held at the Screening Room at SIFA’s Festival House and Oldham Theatre.


A Screening of Bill Frisell: A Portrait

Thursday, 23 May 2019 - 7:30pm @Screening Room, Festival House

Grammy Award winner and renowned composer, Bill Frisell has garnered countless accolades from critics, audiences and peers worldwide. Yet despite his iconic status, Frisell notoriously shies from the limelight. Now, Australian filmmaker Emma Franz's intimate and insightful film portrait of this renowned virtuoso guitarist explores the nuances of Frisell's thought processes, approach and character.



Shiro Takatani, Dumb Type (Japan)

Friday & Saturday, 24 May & 25 May 2019 - 8pm @Esplanade Theatre
Tickets: $40, $60, $80

In this stunning performance-installation, Japanese artist Shiro Takatani’s meditation on silence unfolds in an exquisite multimedia staging, along with music by world-renowned composer, Ryuichi Sakamoto.


De Relaxerette

Arjan Kruidhof and Explore-the-North (The Netherlands)

Friday-Monday, 10 - 20 May 2019 - Daily @Our Tampines Hub 
Thursday-Sunday, 23 May - 2 June 2019 - Daily @The Plaza, National Library Building

Mon - Fri: 1-4pm & 5.30pm - 8.30pm 
Sat: 12pm - 2pm, 3.30pm - 5.30pm, 7pm-9pm 
Sun: 11am - 2pm, 3.30pm - 6.30pm

Spend a dreamy afternoon with De Relaxerette, a charming revolving installation conceived by Dutch artist Arjan Kruidhof.



Plunge: New Ways to Talk about Theatre

Arts Republic (Singapore)

Thursday-Sunday, 16 May - 2 Jun 2019 - Various Timings @House Pour, Festival House

Have you fallen in love with a work of art, only to find yourself wanting to extend the experience by sharing it with others? Plunge: New Ways to Talk about Theatre is an exciting platform bringing people together to share their post-show musings from SIFA 2019 in a casual and fun setting.


Culture, Theatre, Body: The Works of Tadashi Suzuki

Dr Lee Chee Keng (Singapore)

Saturday, 18 May 2019 - 1:30pm @Living Room, Festival House

In this talk, Dr Lee Chee Keng, Assistant Professor of Theatre Practice at Yale NUS College,  discusses director Tadashi Suzuki’s creative practice, aesthetics and social ideas in relation to  his company’s base within the isolated mountain of Toga away from the Japan’s major metropolitan cities.

In Conversation with Tadashi Suzuki

Tadashi Suzuki (Japan)

Saturday, 18 May 2019 - 4:30pm @Blue Room, Festival House

fascinating opportunity to get up-close with the world-renowned director, whose thinking and practice has had a powerful influence on theatre.

Sound - A Mutual Tuning

Chong Li-Chuan (Singapore)

Sunday, 19 May 2019 - 4pm @Living Room, Festival House

In this talk, composer and sound designer Chong Li-Chuan introduces the concept of acoustic ecology and the different modes of listening that often go unnoticed or unexamined in our everyday lives. Chong has collaborated with practitioners in theatre, dance, visual arts, architecture and spoken word on recent local works such as Cut Kafka!, How Did The Cat Get So Fat? and Lear Is Dead.

From Traditional to Contemporary – A Producer’s Insight

Restu Imansari Kusumaningrum (Indonesia)

Monday, 20 May 2019 - 11am @Blue Room, Festival House

An experienced Indonesian arts producer and the founding artistic director of the Bali Purnati Foundation, Restu Imansari Kusumaningrum has an extensive background as a producer for dance and theatre. She has worked on Tadashi Suzuki’s Dionysus, Robert Wilson’s I La Galigo, and the Indonesian National Pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 2013 and 2015. In this talk, Restu shares her insights into her working process and her experience with artists in creating contemporary works from traditional art forms and practices.

Producing Art & Technology – The YCAM Mode

Akiko Takeshita & Clarence Ng (Japan & Singapore)

Wednesday, 22 May 2019 - 7.30pm @Blue Room, Festival House

Yamaguchi Center for Arts and Media (YCAM) is an innovative arts centre in Japan that has been at the forefront of exploring collaborative projects where media technology, science,  and arts, education and community intersect. In this session, Producer Akiko Takeshita and Project Manager Clarence Ng will give an introduction to YCAM and share their experience on the YCAM production process where professionals from multi-disciplinary fields are dynamically integrated for various output.

Talking about Three Sisters

Nelson Chia/Nine Years Theatre (Singapore)

Saturday, 25 May 2019 - 5pm @Living Room, Festival House

In the style of Nine Year Theatre’s (NYT) signature Drink and Talk sessions – a causal dialogue with the audience over drinks – Artistic Director Nelson Chia will share about NYT’s long working relationship with the SITI Company of New York. In particular, Chia will discuss how the two companies met, their training and creative processes, and their decision to embark on a work together, to adapt Anton Chekhov's Three Sisters.

Critics Live: A post-show response to Displaced Person's Welcome Dinner

Arts Equator (Singapore)

Saturday, 25 May 2019 - 10pm @Living Room, Festival House

For an insight into how critics formulate their responses to performances, join senior Thai critic, Pawit Mahasarinand and other critics from Southeast Asia, in a post-show conversation about Checkpoint Theatre's Displaced Persons' Welcome Dinnerwritten by Huzir Sulaiman. This critics-led discussion will bring a regional perspective to the work, a SIFA commission, by one of Singapore's leading theatre companies.

In Conversation with Shiro Takatani

Shiro Takatani (Japan)

Saturday, 25 May 2019 - 2pm @Living Room, Festival House

From installation, exhibitions to performance, Japanese artist Shiro Takatani is known for his use of multimedia to create multidisciplinary, visually-arresting works. One of the founders of experimental Japanese art collective Dumb Type, Takatani also works as a solo artist. Takatani’s evolution as an artist has also seen him collaborate with cutting-edge musicians like Ryuichi Sakamoto and Rei Harakami.

Asian Dramaturgs' Network Conference 2019: Dramaturgy and the Human Condition

Centre 42

Saturday & Sunday, 25 & 26 May 2019 - Various sessions between 9am - 6pm @Blue Room, Festival House

Dramaturgs work with choices and actions – the ones made by a creative team working on a performance, and their own in relation to how they intend to play their role(s), and what they hope to achieve.


The Nameless & The Name

Ho Tzu Nyen (Singapore)

Thursday-Sunday, 23 May - 02 June 2019 - Daily, 10am - 10pm @Gallery II, Festival House

This video exhibition by Singaporean filmmaker and visual artist Ho Tzu Nyen features The Nameless & The Name, two films that offer a glimpse into Ho’s investigation into the history of the Malayan Communist Party. They reflect the evolution of Ho’s thoughts culminating into Ho’s latest work, The Mysterious Lai Teck.





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