Arts Review Singapore

SIFA v2.020: Bringing audiences together through music, with new programmes added lineup

Screenshot 2020-06-26 at 5.38.15 PM

Following the unveiling of SIFA v2.020 and SIFA-All-Access platform on 20th May, SIFA v2.020 will be launching more digital programmes in June and July, this time featuring a strong music focus. From its successful pivot towards online programming, the Singapore International Festival of Arts (SIFA) continues to add more artistic experiences to its line-up. On 24th June, the team launched a video performance by Singapore Symphony Orchestra. In July, look forward to a music workshop by Jacob Collier, a series of curated playlists, and another episode of SOURCE x Audible Lands, a vodcast series by The Observatory documenting the musicians of the migrant worker community.

Through the SIFA All-Access online platform first launched in May, SIFA has continued to bring the work of local and international artists to global audiences. Committed to creating spaces for artistic interaction in this time of isolation, SIFA has presented a series of curated virtual events including live-streamed “In Conversation” sessions and panel discussions to engage and inspire both audiences and artists. Following the conversations with individuals like Chong Tze Chien, Melissa Lim, and Anne Bogart, the upcoming programmes take a closer look at the role of art within various communities.

Festival Director Gaurav Kripalani shares: “Nothing will beat the shared bond of physically coming together to experience art. It has been so gratifying, therefore, to see the level of response and interaction we have had to our digital programmes over the past month. From talks with artists from the four locally commissioned theatre companies to the incredible session with Anne Bogart, we have seen audiences rally around SIFA v2.020. As we reinvent ourselves to face this brave new world, the SIFA team and I will continue to curate a series of programmes over the next six months that we hope will inspire and provoke those eureka moments until we can meet again in person.”

Grammy Award-winning multi-instrumentalist jazz wunderkind Jacob Collier will conduct an online music workshop on 29 July 2020. Having performed two sold-out shows at SIFA in 2018, the Jacob Collier Workshop promises to be an exhilarating session with the freewheeling musical spirit in his home studio. Musicians and music aficionados can look forward to Collier performing a song or two, speak about creativity in music and his artistic journey, and respond to some questions from the community.

Meanwhile, as the nation emerges stronger together in this difficult time, Singapore Symphony Orchestra (SSO) will perform their rendition of the beloved Singaporean classic, “One People, One Nation, One Singapore”. In a special video celebrating the 30th anniversary of Cultural Medallion recipient Jeremy Monteiro’s 1990 anthem, watch members of the national orchestra performing from home, this time with a few surprising DIY instruments added to the mix to express a collective support for the community. Join in their homemade harmonies on SIFA All-Access.

SIFA Playlist with…, is a series of Spotify playlists curated by SIFA artists from Singapore and abroad in response to a specific theme or inspiration. Critically acclaimed Singapore collective Red Dot Baroque debuts this series on 27th July at 12pm with a selection of Baroque pieces as an introduction to this exquisite period of classical music. Red Dot Baroque will also begin this programme with a video performance by three musicians from the ensemble, acquainting audiences with works from composers like Dario Castello and Francois Couperin. For the rest of the series, anticipate an eclectic spectrum of music over the coming months which will allow audiences to indulge in myriad sounds whilst discovering new composers and works.

Explore the music inspirations of the migrant worker communities in the third instalment of The Observatory’s vodcast series, SOURCE x Audible Lands. In collaboration with filmmaker Eric Lee and talented migrant worker musicians, the documentary series continues with Billal Hossain and his group of musicians who have made Pandan Reservoir the backdrop to their rich musical landscape. To catch up on previous episodes, all vodcasts in this series can be accessed through SIFA All-Access.

Accessible through the SIFA All-Access online platform, SIFA v2.020 features a series of curated virtual events including talks, workshops, performances and more till December 2020. In addition to inspiring and entertaining audiences, the online iteration of Singapore’s pinnacle arts festival is also designed to create a space for artists to share their views on creating art in the new normal, for professional development, and as a platform to showcase work created for the digital sphere to engage audiences from here and abroad.

Subscribe to the SIFA newsletter and visit for weekly news and updates on SIFA v2.020.

The Singapore International Festival of the Arts 2020 was originally slated to run from 15th to 31st May 2020, but was cancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. It will return in 2021. 

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