As part of the Heritage Festival 2015, we will be showcasing our DragonFire SG interactive app at the National Museum of Singapore on 2nd May (Saturday) from 10:00am- 12:30pm. We will share our experience in developing the app. Join us and other grant recipients for a show-and-tell!
Venue: National Museum Gallery Theatre (Basement 1)
Date: 2nd May 2015
Last week, I chanced upon a Chinese Street Opera performance at the open space next to my neighbourhood hawker centre. The performance was carried out on a makeshift stage.
In its heydays (1930s – early1970s), Chinese Street Operas were commonplace especially in Chinatown. Then, the costumes were more resplendent, and the staging was definitely more grand than the neighbourhood performances we see nowadays.
Today, street operas face a declining audience. They appeal more to the old as they are performed in dialects (either in Cantonese, Teochew or Hokkien), which young Singaporeans find difficult to understand and appreciate. Presently, the handful of troupes here perform during Chinese religious rites or festival celebrations organised by the temples. They are more visible during the seventh lunar month (Festival of the Hungry Ghosts). It has been said that the performances are put up for the benefit of the Gods and the spirits.
I won’t be surprised if the final curtain soon falls on these troupes and their performances. Sadly, such traditional arts find it hard to survive and thrive in Singapore’s changing social and physical landscape.