An Immersive Showcase of the Expressions of Faith in the Malay World

Date: 12 to 28 October 2018
Venue: Malay Heritage Centre
Admission: Free (some programmes are ticketed)

To complement the exhibition’s focus, MHC is also anchoring the annual Malay CultureFest 2018 around the Hajj and other expressions of faith and devotion. The cultural celebration, spanning three weekends starting from 12 October, will feature a total of 16 immersive programmes including workshops as well as dance and theatre performances, providing visitors of all ages with an intimate understanding of the many expressions of faith in the Malay world.

MHC’s Programme Manager Jamal Mohamad says, “The focus for Malay CultureFest this year opens up exciting opportunities for people to learn more about how elements of faith and devotion are manifested in our intangible cultural heritage. Through various art forms such as dance and theatre, we hope that visitors can experience and enjoy the Malay community’s cultural heritage across the festival.”

Highlights of the festival include:

• The festival’s opening piece featuring a specially commissioned multi-disciplinary performance comprising dance, music, and theatre, that tells the story of young couple who are embarking on the Hajj. Complemented by archival footage, the performance will follow the couple from their home to the port, and their journey on board the ship to Jeddah. To put together this piece, MHC worked closely with an ensemble group of performers including DIAN Dancers, Artistari Gentari, Projek Ujong Tanjong and Ikhwatul Iman Qasidah, featuring Azman Sharif and Nadiputra.

• Lintas Nusantara, an annual collaborative dance festival featuring dancers and musicians from Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia, who will present various dance forms from across the Malay world that are rooted in ritual worship or inspired by acts of devotion.

• Nan Jombang Dance Company, a contemporary dance troupe from Padang, Indonesia, will also present a newly commissioned piece entitled Salam Diantara Sujud (In Between Invocations (Before I Kiss The Ground)) that explores the various meanings of devotion.

Young festival-goers can also join in the fun by taking part in the Heritage Hunt around Kampong Gelam. They can embark on a journey as young Hajj travellers, as they follow the footsteps of the Hajj pilgrims to learn more about the preparations prior to the long sea voyage. They will first start their “journey” with a visit to MHC’s special exhibition and permanent galleries to learn more about the Hajj and Kampong Gelam, and later extend their experience into the precinct and visit various shops such as Wahab Textiles that still sells Hajj supplies. A full list of the various programmes for Malay CultureFest 2018 can be found here.

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