Much like the recently concluded The Studios Online season, with the restrictions placed on live performances, Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay has made the move to shift their annual Pesta Raya – Malay Festival of Arts completely online.
A total of nine productions, comprising three new works and six archival recordings from previous editions of Pesta Raya editions, can be enjoyed completely free-of-charge online. Headlining this year’s Pesta Raya is the screening of Alkesah (our favourite musical of 2018), a joyous production that gathers famous characters from Malay folklore and places them in a single kampung.
Malaysian multi-instrumental indie musicians The Venopian Solitude came to Pesta Raya in 2017, and fans will get to see them again with the archival footage of Hikayat Gundik Berirama to be screened in this edition. Traditional Malay music will also be highlighted, with the production of GhaMuhyi: Crossing the Boundaries of Ghazal by Malaysian music ensemble Ghamuhyi performing ghazal classics like Malam Merindu and originals such as Gemersik Ombak and Arabian Affair together with Singapore’s Sri Mahligai and Orkestra Sri Temasek.
Of the new works, look out for a talk show hosted by Hafidz Rahman and Zuhairi Idris from Lepak One Korner, a traditional and contemporary Malay dance workshop and performance by Artistari Gentari and an interactive programme by Tysha Khan involving storytelling, puppetry, craft and music for kids. Each of these new works will be presented fully online, and as such, have been designed to fit the medium.
With some of the very best programmes being re-screened, and brand new works, even if you’re feeling down with the current situation, come lift your spirits when you join the Esplanade in celebrating the festive season through Pesta Raya Online.
The Esplanade’s Pesta Raya Online runs from 19th to 28th June 2020 online. For the full lineup and more information, visit their website here