May 19, 2016

Shaking It With Shakespeare

Shaking It With Shakespeare_Image Courtesy of the Singapore Philatelic Museum (15)

We’re cringing at the name, but hopefully the contents of this exhibition tribute to the world’s greatest playwright will change our minds. Shakespeare fans unite! In commemorating the 400th death anniversary of William Shakespeare, the Singapore Philatelic Museum (SPM) has put together a host of special programmes and artifacts for your cultural enlightenment. There’ll be over 400 stamps and philatelic materials from 70 countries on display; along with century-old postcards, original books from Shakespeare’s time, and interactive exhibits to give a greater glimpse into the literary giant’s life – 38 plays, 154 sonnets, and all.

Complete with Tudor themed activities, craft sessions, and even a storytelling session by a practitioner all the way from the Globe theatre in London, there’s definitely something for everyone, literary enthusiast or not. If you thought that Romeo & Juliet was all there is to Shakespeare ­– first, how dare you; and second, you’re way overdue for a trip to the exhibition.

Date: 14 May 2016 to 15 January 2017
Time: 10am – 7pm
Venue: Singapore Philatelic Museum, 23-B Coleman Street, Singapore 179807
Admission: Free
More info at spm.org.sg.


Super Japan Matsuri


It’s no surprise that, to some degree, everyone’s a fan of the Land of the Rising Sun. Whether you’re an all-out Otaku or just someone curious for a taste of Japanese culture, you’ll definitely want to make your way down to the Esplanade this weekend for Super Japan – the Esplanade’s newest cultural festival showcasing the arts and culture of Japan.

The actual festival is a 10-day long affair that’s already in full swing, with musical performances (everything from folk music to J-Pop), puppet theatre shows, craft workshops, and activities for the anime fan. But what we’re really here for is the matsuri kicking off tomorrow – a traditional Japanese communal festival held during the summer that’s one part food and another part pure fun. Indulge in Japanese street snacks (takoyaki! Kushimono skewers!) at the seven food and games stalls, where you’ll also be able to try your hand at authentic matsuri games like yo-yo tsuri (yo-yo balloon fishing). It kind of goes without saying, but we’re making a beeline straight for the tako balls.

Date: 20 May to 22 May 2016
Time: 20 May 5-10pm; 21 to 22 May 3-10pm
Venue: Esplanade Theatres on the Bay
Admission: Free
More info at esplanade.com/festivals-and-series/super-japan-japanese-festival-of-arts/2016


Erdinger’s Maifest 2016


It seems the beer just keeps on coming. Maifest isn’t your regular drink-yourself-drunk Oktoberfest though; brought to you by acclaimed brewery Erdinger, the festival is a traditional German celebration of the arrival of spring in May – a joyous occasion of food, drink, and fun. You might also recognise the presence of the Maypole, a giant pole constructed with colourufl ribbons flying around it for people to dance and make merry under. And just because we aren’t welcoming spring for ourselves doesn’t mean we can’t join in on the festivities – it’s two whole nights of German games and prizes, hearty bangers and mash, and lots of beer at Maifest 2016; right here in Singapore. Thank goodness; we didn’t think we could hold out till October.

Date: 20 May and 27 May
Time: 8-10pm and 7-9pm respectively
Venue: Clarke Quay and Holland Village respectively
More info at erdingermaifest.com.


Big Bang Data

Gunnar Knechtel Photography

Ever felt unbearably overwhelmed by the sheer amount of data and information we’re forced to process everyday? Well, a bunch of exhibitioners clearly have too. In an epic exhibition where art embraces technology, Big Bang Data explores contemporary issues surrounding the sudden big data explosion in the 21st century. Don’t let the sound of that intimidate you though – through the works of artists, designers, journalists and visionaries, the exhibition deals with important topics you didn’t even realise constituted your everyday life; issues like data privacy, security of personal data, and the pervasiveness of technology everywhere. Twenty-four Hrs in Photos, in particular, is more than just a visually stimulating installation; the heap of photos engulfing the room are a commentary on how nothing is private in the public domain. Chilling, but true.

Date: 21 May to 26 May 2016
Time: 10am – 7pm daily
Venue: ArtScience Museum
More info at marinabaysands.com/museum/big-bang-data.