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Bright lights, music and track action as Singapore revs into top gear after sunset

The Singapore Night Festival brings local artists, the World of WearableArt and Company Quidams to the Bras Basah Bugis precinct while the Singapore Grand Prix and ZoukOut Beach Party draw international visitors

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 16 August, 2018, 9:01am
UPDATED : Thursday, 16 August, 2018, 9:05am

Singapore seems very different at night, and there is plenty to see under the city’s bright lights, especially in its busiest tourist season, from now until the end of the year.

The Singapore Night Festival (SNF) returns for its 11th year to “Bring on the Night”, with memorable light displays and night events, from August 17 to 25. Beginning with the annual Night Lights, the festival will light up the Bras Basah Bugis precinct with 16 light installations by artists from different backgrounds. Visitors can also enjoy 27 performances from different genres in Singapore’s arts and heritage district.

“We wanted to challenge ourselves to expand on the idea of creativity and explore possible synergies,” says SNF festival director Angelita Teo. As a result, SNF 2018 invited “unexpected artists” from very distinct backgrounds and who were supported by over 60 partners.

“We invite everyone to explore the numerous interesting spaces around the precinct; [to] participate and interact with the different acts, performers and art installations we have created and planned,” says Jervais Choo, the festival’s programme director. The event’s visitors can appreciate avant-garde clothes in the New Zealand-based fashion competition, World of WearableArt, which combines art, technology and fashion. Or, they might bump into Company Quidams’ giant horses in its FierS à Cheval or “Proud Horses” performance. Alternatively, visitors might be awed by the thunderous spectacle created by the British troupe Lords of Lighting, which features nearly four million volts of electricity that sends lighting bolts hurtling up into the air.

You might need earplugs for the Formula 1 2018 Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix, which returns to the city, and is raced at night, from September 14-16. Motor racing fans can expect Formula 1 and other racing cars to scream to their limits under the memorably bright lights of the Marina Bay Circuit during the weekend. The Singapore Grand Prix is also famous for its off-track concerts, and this year’s performers include Jay Chou, The Killers, Liam Gallagher, Martin Garrix and Dua Lipa.

The Grand Prix weekend has been a significant boost to the city state’s tourism since it first hosted F1 in 2008, with several off-track events, from virtual-reality race simulations to after-parties, its organiser says.

The event has grown to be more than a race, they add. It is now a showpiece “for the whole country where a partnership between government and the private sector could present the new modern Singapore to the rest of the world via inbound tourism and showcasing the stunning renaissance of the downtown Marina Bay district”, says Singapore Grand Prix executive director Michael Roche.

Music fans can then dance to electronic dance music at arguably Asia’s best rave, the 18th ZoukOut Beach Party, which returns to Sentosa’s Siloso Beach, from sunset to sunrise on December 1. The rave’s performers include Dimitri Vegas and Like Mike and W&W.