Food won’t be the only reason to visit Penang. This July, George Town will become a living, breathing stage for art, culture, music, and street performances. The 2019 event marks its 10th instalment to date, a festival making art accessible to anyone.
Choose a weekend or two to bring your family for these forms of art for all ages.
Before the festival even begins, the town will already start to come alive with these free-to-attend performances.
- Macam-Macam Berapit, 7 July
- Mesama: Theatrical and acrobatic stunt performances
- Performer 231: magician and circus artist
- Celebrating the World: twin artists of dance and circus
- Three Scholars in a Family: Teochew puppet opera
- The Penang Dhol Blasters: Bhangra musicians
- Culture Shot: multiracial Malaysian music group
- Heritage Walk, 7 July
- Visit Lebuh Pantai for a 5km-long walk to immerse yourself in the sights and sounds of Penang’s historical landmarks.
- For RM39, you get a t-shirt, medal, goodie bag, and a certificate
When Night Falls [13 – 14 July, 7 – 11PM]
A light show with the streets as the backdrop. The Padang Kota Lama Esplanade will become a playground of enthralling displays of light and performances by:
- Compagnie des Quidams from France
- The Lighted Drummers from Moz Drums
- Teatro Pavana from The Netherlands
Art in the City [20 – 21 July, 5 – 11PM]
Who says art has to be confined in a gallery? Take a walk down the Georgetown Heritage Site and you’ll find art in every nook and cranny.
- Garden Gig
- Tiny Touts
- Puppet Stage
- Malaysia Inside Out
- Dance @ 74
- Mai Main Kaki Lima!
If you wish to fully submerge into artful performances, these ticketed shows offer you a vast array of experiences to choose from. From local acts to artists hailing from Europe and Asia, with some being cross-national collaborations.
- Screaming in Silence, Theatre (Afghanistan)
- The Strangers, Physical Theatre (Japan & Germany)
- Kampong Chempedak, Theatre (Singapore)
- Isle to Isle: Design Forum, Forum & Talk (Taiwan)
- Isle to Isle: Father, Film (Taiwan)
- Fluorophone, Music (Australia)
- Journey of a Baby Butterfly, Theatre (Malaysia)
- Funny Business with Kavin Jay & Friends, Comedy (Malaysia)
- Teater Normcore: Double Bill, Theatre (Malaysia)
- Bird, Dance (Thailand & Finland)
- Armour & Skin, Music (Malaysia & Indonesia)
- Great New World, Forum & Talk (Malaysia)
- Light – A Staged Reading, Theatre (Australia & Malaysia)
- Thisnorthat Runway Presentation, Fashion (China)
The festival will culminate in a roaring climax with a finale entitled The Extravaganza. Witness as artists from around the world take it to the streets, bringing you performances and art installations. On stage will be a dance performance by local prolific dancer Aida Redza, and aerial silk and rope performance artists. A fitting end for a captivating festival.
If you visit during the second half of July, you can hit two events in one trip. OBSCURA Festival of Photography will take place between 13 July to 31 August. It boasts a slew of exhibitions, photo workshops and all manner of programmes.
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