21 May, 2022 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
In Ceremonial Enactments, three Singaporean companies imagine a resplendent tapestry of local customary rituals, told with a contemporary twist.
Drawing from customs and rites within Singapore’s diverse cultures, Ceremonial Enactments features three festival commissions, woven into one seamless performance experience.
Held at the Esplanade Theatre, Ceremonial Enactments flips conventional notions of staging and the audience-to-performance relationship within a traditional proscenium theatre.
In Act I, designer powerhouse and label MAX.TAN opens the evening with ANG, a fashion performance inspired by Chinese and Southeast Asian birth rituals. Conceived as a sartorial love letter to designer Max Tan’s mother, Tan constructs and weaves garments of ethereal beauty, layered with ideas of birth, re-birth and Samsara.
In Act II, percussion ensemble Nadi Singapura, led by Artistic Director Riduan Zalani, presents one of the grandest ceremonies within the Malay community – the wedding or the majlis persandingan. 293NW elegantly weaves dance and narrative, along with Nadi Singapura’s signature style of traditional Malay percussion rhythms.
In Act III, Cultural Medallion recipient Mrs Santha Bhaskar presents Yantra Mantra, an enactment of an ancient dance ritual performed in Hindu temples. Drawing from compositions by the Indian classical composer Sri Muthuswamy Dhikshitar and poetry by the 18th century Tanjore Quartet, dancers pay obeisance to the nine celestial custodians that guard the eight directions and the centre of the earth.
Ceremonial Enactments features a stellar team of creatives, including Randy Chan of Zarch Collaboratives Architectural Studios conceiving the startling set design, Brian Gothong Tan, Andy Lim and Philip Tan designing multimedia, light and music respectively, Gino Babagay lending choreographic unity along with fashion designer Max Tan conceiving costumes for the entire work.
Grand and gorgeously realised, Ceremonial Enactments is a sensorial awakening celebrating customary rituals in a highly contemporary performance.