PUBLISHED November 21st, 2013 01:13 am | UPDATED January 20th, 2016 03:39 pm
The holiday season is nearly here – the lights have gone up on Orchard Road and Christmas songs have replaced muzark in supermarkets. If you are wondering what else you can do apart from indulging in the usual spree of gift shopping and feasting, here are some events you can attend that will put you in the holiday mood. And if you are having difficulty choosing a gift, consider giving one of the following experiences instead!
Traditional Holiday Season Entertainment
What would the Holiday season be like without Christmas carols and music?
Capture the spirit of the yuletide season with the Singapore Symphony Orchestra (SSO) Carol Concert. Conductor Jason Lai and soprano Ee-Ping present two magical evenings of traditional carols and some not-so-traditional Christmas offerings, including excerpts from Bach’s Christmas Oratorio and music by John Williams from the movie Home Alone.
SSO Carol Concert: 10 and 12 December 2013 at the Esplanade Concert Hall, tickets from SISTIC.
The Singapore Lyric Opera Children’s Choir (SLOCC) will be presenting This Joy: SLOCC in Concert with Friends a programme celebrating the Nativity, with carols in English, French, Italian and Spanish, as well as a smattering of familiar favourites.
SLOCC Concert: 7 December 2013 at the Esplanande Concert Hall, tickets from SISTIC.
At the Arts House, Vox Camerata presents A Ceremony of Carols, a repertoire of Christmas music old and new. Featuring compositions ranging from Stravinsky’s Ave Maria to a contemporary composition from Alejandro Carillo, the repertoire will bring the audience on a journey of celebratory music running through different musical periods from the late 1800s to the present.
Vox Camerata: A Ceremony of Carols, is on at the Arts House, 7 December, 3.30pm & 7.30pm, Tickets are available at www.bytes.sg.
If you are a jazz fan, then get ready as the ninth edition of Merry Bebop: A Jazzy Christmas swings back into town. Jeremy Monteiro and his international trio consisting of Shawn Kelley on drums and Christy Smith on bass bring you Christmas tunes in the vein of the early bebop innovators. The trio will perform with accomplished guest musicians from around the world.
Jazzy Christmas: Saturday, 21 December 2013 at the Esplanade Concert Hall, tickets from SISTIC.
For more jazz, R&B and other types of music, catch Shun Ng and veteran gospel music icon Lawrence Watson in a one-night only Christmas concert . Guitar wizard Shun Ng and African American “edutainer” Lawrence Watson will present a two-part show featuring a repertoire of original compositions and well-known Christmas classics.
Rhythm of Christmas – 22 December 2013 at the Drama Centre Theatre, tickets from SISTIC.
Apart from music, you can also catch Singapore Dance Theatre’s The Nutcracker, a firm favourite of every holiday season. This version, first staged in 2011, is set in pre- WWI, turn of the century Shanghai, and features characters from the famous tale – Clara, the Snow Queen, the Sugar Plum Fairy and her cavalier, the King of the Rats and of course, the Nutcracker!
Another tradition of the season is the pantomime. This year W!ld Rice will be staging Jack and The Bean Sprout. With the writing literally on the void-deck walls, the cash-strapped Jack and mother Widow Neo resort to selling Ah Kow, their pet cow. When Jack only gets handful of green beans instead of cash for their pet, disaster looms until a gigantic bean-sprout springs up in Marina Bay which reaches high up beyond the clouds, where a man-eating Giant is rumoured to live! Desperate, Jack climbs up the giant bean-sprout – to discover danger, adventure and the stirrings of first love!
If cabaret and comedy is more your style, then join the Dim Sum Dollies and Ting Tong Belles for Crazy Christmas – Ting Tong Belles! The Dollies will be joined by the “Ting Tong Belles’, and ‘Broadway Beng’ plus local comedian Kumar. From trishaw sleigh rides to Frosty’s pet gripes, from girly crushes to Candy Crushers, from Jingle Bells to Ting Tong Belles plus the sultry sounds of a cappella group, Vocaluptuous, this is a show filled with fun and yuletide joy!
Crazy Christmas – 11 – 22 December 2013 at the Esplanade Theatre, tickets from SISTIC.
Sight Lines Productions presents A Christmas Cabaret – a night of song, dance and dinner entertainment. Be razzle-dazzled by the musical talents of LASALLE College of the Arts as they take you through a night of merry music making. Expect a musical whirlwind mash up of Christmas favourites and Broadway show tunes, a retelling of the Christmas story – the Broadway way, and a reimagining of how the Phantom celebrates Christmas.
A Christmas Cabaret – 4 -7 December 2013 at Lower Case Café at LaSalle College of the Arts, tickets from Ticketmash.
Break Away From Tradition
Looking for a different type of experience? Then don’t miss Sing’Theatre’s A French Kiss in Singapore, an evening of love songs from four of France’s most beloved contemporary songwriters and performers performed by Hossan Leong, George Chan, Robin Goh and Linden Furnell.
A French Kiss In Singapore – 27 November – 7 December 2013 at SOTA, tickets from SISTIC.
The Esplanade is holding a new festival called VOICES – A Festival of Song. This Festival celebrates singing from different cultures: the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir, A Cappella and Throat singers from Mongolia.
Fans of the T’ang Quartet should catch their one night show Take A Bet On T’ang. Be game for a concert where you have no idea what is rolling next. In this game of chance, there will be no repertoire information. You have to take your chances, and see what the four maestros deal out.
Take A Bet On T’ang – 20 December 2013 at the Esplanade Concert Hall, tickets from SISTIC.
There’s even something for the Bollywood fans this season! ‘Bollywood Kee-Maa”, a tribute to ‘the Masala Movie’, celebrates 100 years of Indian cinema, paying comical homage to Bollywood and “every other Wood”. If art is the mirror of society, and cinema is the most popular art in India, then here’s a high-octane, fun play that tries to capture the method, the madness and the magic of popular Indian Cinema!
Bollywood Kee-Maa – 13 -14 December 2013 at the Alliance Francais, tickets from SISTIC.
Looking for something to amuse the kids? Take them to the Singapore Repertory Theatre’s Little Company production of Red Riding Hood. Adapted for the stage by London’s award-winning writing duo Jake Brunger and Pippa Cleary, Red Riding Hood is an uplifting story of brave Little Red who must journey through the forest to reunite her family and save Mother’s bakery from bankruptcy. A fantastic show to be enjoyed by children and adults of all ages.
Red Riding Hood – 1 Nov – 15 Dec 2013, at the DBS Theatre – Home of the SRT, tickets from SISTIC.
There are plenty of free events at Celebrate Christmas In Singapore, an event where volunteers and artistes come from all over the world. The highlights of this event are Christmas Floats along Orchard Road, events on both walkways along Orchard Rd and Marina Bay, the Christmas Village in front of Mandarin Gallery plus nightly performances on stages along Orchard Road walkways. The festivities culminate with a Grand Concert Extravaganza at 7:30pm on 25 December on Orchard Rd itself with singers and dancers from all over the world and our very own local musicians.
For more information, visit http://ccis.sg/
And finally, ’tis the season to remember those who are less fortunate and to give them some cheer. Take part in the Christmas Fair & Walkathon 2013 and help raise funds for Children’s Charities. Now in its 9th year, the events will start off with a 1.5km Walk along Orchard Road. This will be followed by the Fair where proceeds from food, games and handicraft stalls will be donated to the Children’s Charities Association of Singapore. Please visit the website below for more information here.