Aug 17, 2017

Singapore Night Festival 2017: Top Picks for Families

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Singapore Night Festival returns this weekend, and this year marks a milestone in the Festival's history because it is TEN years old! 

Held over two weeks from 18 to 26 August August 2017 (7.30pm - 12am) right in the heart of the heritage district of the Bras Basah.Bugis precinct, this year will see a slight tweak to the format. This weekend, visitors can go on a trail around the precinct and view the various light installations while the big performance shows will be happening on 24, 25 & 26 August.


As the Festival celebrates 10 magical years, expect plenty of dazzling night lights and exhilarating performances, with previous crowd favourites brought back in a refreshing retrospective complete with loads of other activities for the family. So yes, for the next 2 weekends, there is a perfect excuse for kids to stay up late!

Unfortunately, I was unable to head down for the media preview as Ash will be having his PSLE Oral Exams this week (oh, the stress!) so I had to stay home to drill him show him my support. But thanks to my good friend, Belinda, she managed to capture the most eye-catching light installations at Singapore Night Festival 2017 so here are the top picks that families with kids should never miss.

First things first, Singapore Night Festival is essentially divided into 5 zones:

Zone 1: NATIONAL MUSEUM OF SINGAPORE + SINGAPORE MANAGEMENT
UNIVERSITY (SMU) SCHOOL OF ACCOUNTANCY

Zone 2: ARMENIAN STREET

Zone 3: CATHAY GREEN + SCHOOL OF THE ARTS

Zone 4: SINGAPORE MANAGEMENT UNIVERSITY

Zone 5: SINGAPORE ART MUSEUM (SAM) + WATERLOO STREET + NATIONAL
DESIGN CENTRE + CHIJMES + BRAS BASAH COMPLEX

Click to enlarge

Zone 1: NATIONAL MUSEUM OF SINGAPORE + SINGAPORE MANAGEMENT

Convolutions
by EZ3kiel (France)
National Museum of Singapore façade
18 – 26 August 2017 | 7.30pm – 12am


Designed as a visual poem, Convolutions links architecture, projection, lights, laser and music in a poetic and technological ballet completely transforming the facade of National Museum of Singapore into a contemporary show.




Check out a short snippet of the light projection show below:


The Tree That Blinked
by Karel Bata (United Kingdom)
Banyan Tree, outside the National Museum of Singapore
18 – 26 August 2017 | 7.30pm – 12am


The Tree That Blinked is a series of portraits projected into a tree that toys with notions of identity, representation, and transformation. As the work moves and shifts with the wind, expressions seem to change, and the faces appear to undergo changes of age. The illusion can be compelling. Some folks think the leaves have been individually painted. Others that the tree must have been trimmed to the shape of a head!


Nostos: Records of the Self
by Aesop (Singapore)
National Museum of Singapore, Gallery 10
18 – 26 August 2017 | 10am – 12am


To mark Singapore Night Festival’s tenth anniversary, Aesop offers a scent experience for the occasion. Visitors can use their nose to navigate the space, imprinting the aroma to memory for future recollection. The title takes inspiration from the Greek word nostos, meaning homecoming. When paired with álgos, meaning ache, the words form ‘nostalgia’ – a feeling for which scent is an evocative trigger.

Tessellations of Time
by LiteWerkz x 3M (Singapore)
National Museum of Singapore, Main Ground
18 – 26 August 2017 | 7.30pm – 12am


Tessellations of Time is inspired by the precious bridges between people and time, in celebration of the 10 successful years of the Singapore Night Festival. Invoking the fluctuations of coded lights and digitally fabricated pods, the work strives to create a conversation as people enter and interact with their own interpretations of the past, present and future.


The Flower of Life and the Infinite Self
by Starlight Alchemy (Singapore)
Stamford Green
18 – 26 August 2017 | 7.30pm – 12am


The Flower of Life and the Infinite Self consists of two symbiotic pieces: a geodesic bamboo dome with a tessellated fabric roof resembling the flower of life, and interior walls mounted with geometrically arranged convex mirrors that form dynamic reflections of visitors as they walk around the dome. Drawing inspiration from Buckminster Fuller and M.C. Escher, this installation will present a different persona during the day and night, providing visitors with a colourful meditative atmosphere under geometry and reflections.


Zone 2: ARMENIAN STREET

The bulk of the activities will take place on the weekend of 24-26 August, and will feature happening festivities like a street carnival, Peranakan Party, music performances and even Open Houses at both Peranakan Museum & Singapore Philatelic Museum!

Secrecy
by The Rat Pack (Singapore)
Armenian Church
18 – 26 August 2017 | 7.30pm – 12am


Secrecy brings cool light to the hallowed grounds, a nod to the patron saint of the Armenian Church: St Gregory the Illuminator. The garden is bathed in a spectrum of calm neon tones with an ambient soundscape in the background. Be ready to be transported to a quiet space of futuristic magic and serenity within the church grounds.

ZONE 3 – CATHAY GREEN + SCHOOL OF THE ARTS

No light installations in this zone, but there are performances lined up in the weekend of 24 - 26 August. So check back next week!

ZONE 4 – SINGAPORE MANAGEMENT UNIVERSITY (SMU)

*Note: Festival Village is only operational from 24 to 26 August 2017 (6pm - 12am).

Dream City Window
by Untitled Project (Singapore)
SMU School of Information Systems
18 – 26 August 2017 | 7.30pm – 12am

Photo courtesy of SNF2017
Experience art and collaboration in an interactive projection. Dream City Window is inspired by the heart and soul of Singapore’s culture, with user-generated interactive visuals derived from abstractions of our evolving environment. Walk alongside the work, bring it to life, and watch your digital silhouette on screen interwoven with abstractions of Singapore’s culture.

ZONE 5 – SINGAPORE ART MUSEUM (SAM) + WATERLOO STREET + NATIONAL
DESIGN CENTRE + CHIJMES + BRAS BASAH COMPLEX

Personally, I think this is the most fun zone of the lot!

Les Hommes Debout (The Standing Men)
by AADN (France)
Singapore Art Museum
18 – 26 August 2017 | 7.30pm – 12am


Behind the interactive art installation of 16 human-sized figurines, The Standing Men call out
to those strolling by to initiate a dialogue with them. Flashes go off in an echo, colours
change… the statues come to life in an unpredictable way, transforming the entire installation
into a ballet of light. The installation presented at the Singapore Night Festival features voices
and emotions of inhabitants in Bras Basah.Bugis, who were recorded in August 2017.


Phosphene
by Praxis+ (Singapore)
National Design Centre, Design Gallery I
18 – 26 August 2017 | 7.30pm – 12am


This is the most instagrammable light installation of the lot! A winding cavern of twinkling lights and unexpected turns, Phosphene invites visitors on a journey of inspiration and surprises, sparked by the beautiful moments of the Singapore Night Festival’s decade-long journey. The work celebrates the memories and experiences of the Festival and those who have been part of it through the years.



Flock
by KMA (United Kingdom)
National Design Centre
18 – 26 August 2017 | 7.30pm – 12am


Step directly into the heart of Tchaikovsky’s 1876 ballet, Swan Lake, with Flock (2017). An immersive space, it combines light, sound and projections with live motion tracking technology. Visitors are placed within the corps de ballet, where they can explore the narrative from a unique perspective.

Light Up The Beat!
by Lighting Planners Associates in collaboration with Atsuhiro Ito (Singapore and Japan)
Waterloo Centre
18 – 26 August 2017 | 7.30pm – 12am
Performance: 25, 26 August 2017 | 9pm – 10pm


Old fluorescent tubes have been forced to retire in place of popular LED fixtures, and their search for a second life manifests as a band of musicians bringing wonder to adults and kids alike in a local town-place.

READY TO HEAD DOWN TO SINGAPORE NIGHT FESTIVAL 2017?

HANG ON... Here are a few tips for parents who are thinking of bringing the kiddos down:

- If you have limited time, stay at Zone 1 or Zone 5 where the bulk of kid-friendly activities are. There are some activities happening within National Museum of Singapore too, so pop in for some air-conditioned comfort should it get too hot outside.

- The Festival Village (Zone 4) is directly opposite National Museum, which makes it an ideal location to pick up some food and drinks. Musical performances happen regularly at the Festival Village stage too. But do note it will only be opened next weekend.

- The light installations and wall projection shows are happening throughout the week, including weekdays. If you wish to avoid the crowds, it makes sense to head down on weekday nights. Do check the schedule beforehand though - most of them start at 7.30pm and end at midnight.

- For past editions, we parked at the SMU car park which charges $3 per entry after 6pm. The location is pretty central to the main bulk of the activities happening at the Night Festival.


Next weekend will see loads of performances at the various zones so do head back and see which are the ones that you and the kids will not want to miss!



Useful Information

Singapore Night Festival 2017
Dates: 18 - 26 August 2017 | Performance nights on 24, 25, 26 Aug
Time: 7.30pm to 12 midnight
Venue: Bras Basah.Bugis
FREE Admission
Website: nightfest.sg
Programme Schedule: (Click to enlarge)


Stay updated at Bras Basah.Bugis' Facebook page.
*For an interactive map that showcases all of the above highlights and more, visit  nightfest.sg/festival-map.


*All photos by Belinda Tan, unless stated otherwise.


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Aug 11, 2017

5 Highlights at one-north Festival 2017 for Families

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Sponsored Post

Drawing without a pencil? Editing your own DNA? Creating a key chain using metal stamping? Or how about making your own robots or drones?

Science and technology need not be all geeky and intimidating. In fact, it can be so very fun for the entire family... which is what the upcoming one-north Festival on 18 and 19 August 2017 is all about!


Taking place at the Biopolis @ one-north from 11am to 6pm on both days (18 & 19 August), the festival is jointly organised by  Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) and JTC, and supported by Science Centre Singapore and Mediacorp. The festival is anything but intimidating, going by the sheer number of workshops, tours, open houses and interactive activities that will be taking place.

A celebration of research, innovation, creativity, and enterprise, visitors can expect to hear from and interact with scientists, innovators, media creators and entrepreneurs. Families can discover what it is that inspires them and how a passion for science, technology, creativity and enterprise is pioneering an innovation future for all. 

Here are FIVE highlights NOT TO BE MISSED. And yes, they are ALL FREE!

one-north Festival Exhibition

Experience over 50 interactive displays featuring the latest innovations for Future Health, Future Living and Future Work discovered and made in Singapore and beyond. Innovators from A*STAR, the universities, industry and more will bring you the latest breakthroughs which shape and transform our lives.


Here, families can experience a soft material 3D bio-printer which can be used for organ printing and watch light displays that use LEDs to transfer data at high speeds. But more interestingly for kids, they get to interact with and control a collaborative robot to see how it responds to verbal commands and finger gestures and using Augmented Reality (AR)!. I think my monkies will love these!


Hands-on Workshops

For those wishing for a more in-depth experience, workshops allow for extended interactions that will provide hands-on engagement on a specific scientific or artistic topic. The good news is there are plenty of workshops at this year's festival. The bad news? All except ONE workshop are fully booked:

DRAWING WITHOUT PENCIL
Dates & Times: 18 Aug (2.30pm & 3.30pm) | 19 Aug (1.30pm & 2.30pm)

There are many ways with which we can do excellent drawings. However, using simple tools like 2B pencil or other conventional materials for convenience may result in stereotypical images. To develop curiosity and a creative spirit which is required in both art and science, participants are invited to go out of their comfort zones, experience making drawings using different tools and materials, and discover hidden drawing possibilities and qualities through various processes. Participants are encouraged to free their mind and have fun with these "drawings"!


BRAIN AND BEHAVIOUR WORKSHOP
Dates & Times: 18 Aug (2pm)

This fun and interactive workshop utilises hands-on activities to give participants insights into how emotions and behaviours affect the braind and how scientists learn about brain functioning and behaviour in the lab. 

*Do note that limited slots available. So if you are interested, do register now at onenorthfestival.sg now!

Crazy Paint Science Show by Prof Alex Van Herk 

If you only have time for one show, this will be it. Nothing like learning about cool paints and chemicals at a ‘Crazy Paint’ science show!

DJ for a Day with 987FM


Be a DJ for a day at the one-north Festival DJ101 booth. Who knows, you may just hear your sound clip being shared on 987 social media platforms!

RACE.EAT.PLAY: Future Food Street

Food can be  geeky too! Have your selfie printed on your coffee, or try out the latest raw food culinary concepts. Explore the Future Food Street where the trendiest food will be on show! Don’t forget to also spectate at the SoapBox Race as the inaugural Soapbox Race Champion of one-north will be crowned then! Find out more at www.raceeatplay.com.

On top of all these, there are also more than 40 FREE Public Talks featuring experts from different fields scheduled over the 2 days! Hear directly from scientists, innovators and media creators on the latest breakthrough inventions and future possibilities that will impact our lives. Register via HERE.

Click to enlarge

If you are planning to find out how to ace the PSLE Science paper, I can guarantee you will not find your answer at the festival. But if you are looking to see how science and technology can transform our ways in ways we never imagined... and let the kids get involve through experiential learning, then the many activities at one-north Festival 2017 will more than serve their purpose. 

Because one thing is evident - science need not be intimidating. In fact, it can be extremely fun and simple enough for all ages to understand!



Useful Information

one-north Festival 2017
Dates: 18 & 19 August 2017
Time: 11am - 6pm
Venue: BIOPOLIS @ one-north (see details HERE)
Admission: FREE
Website: onenorthfestival.sg



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Aug 10, 2017

Ayd Turns 11!

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Today is Ayd's 11th birthday.

And with every monkie's birthday, I get incredibly nostalgic and even a little edgy. Because it genuinely and truly it feels like only a few months since they came into my life. Where on earth did all the time go???

So I make it a point to celebrate the annual birthdays of the monkies with a post for each of them because let's face it - there would not be a blog without them.  Well... although without them, I would also have less white hair.  And a lot more money.

But that is besides the point. The point is my second child is creeping towards teen-dom!



This past year, he has managed to retain all of his amazing qualities and grew a few more. Not only is he kind, goofy, lovable and generous with his love, he shows fierce determination when he fixates on a goal. But this past year, I rub my eyes and see a completely different kid. Someone who is more confident. Someone who has really grown into his own.



And we all know who deserves the credit for shaping him into the amazing young man he has become thus far. It's me, for cracking all those hilarious jokes throughout his growing up years.

Okay I’m kidding. It is Mummy. She deserves the credit.

He helps more around the house now, and continue to be a wonderful brother to his siblings. Especially to Ale... both of them can talk and banter throughout one entire car's trip, punctuating the atmosphere with their infectious laughter.



In short, he is truly a pleasure to be around. And I couldn't be more proud. I am forever grateful and blessed to be his Dad.



Happy Birthday Ayd!

We love you almost as much as you love noodles.


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Aug 4, 2017

With 8 New Dishes, there's Something Sizzling for Everyone at Pepper Lunch!

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Advertorial

First things first, the monkies take their meals at Pepper Lunch VERY seriously. It is no joking matter when they find out that the wifey and I had gone for a meal there without them.

"What? You went without us??? How can like that??? So unfair!!!"

Drama to the max.

Yes, they love their Pepper Lunch so much that as long as there is one restaurant or a Pepper Lunch Express in a food court in the mall we are at, it is safe to say that would be their default choice. Resistance is futile, I have come to learn.

So imagine how delirious they were when Pepper Lunch came knocking and invited us to try their brand new dishes on the menu!
   

Actually, delirious is probably an understatement because I have never seen them looking forward to lunch so much!

Pepper Lunch is a leading DIY restaurant from Japan and its dining concept is truly unique. And that is perhaps the main reason why the monkies love dining at Pepper Lunch so much - the chance to immerse in the interactive multi-sensory experience of preparing one's food by mixing the freshly-prepared ingredients, experimenting with the addition of the signature sauces, and allowing the hot teppan to sear the meat to one's desired doneness.

And if you there for the first time, you cannot go wrong with its signature Beef Pepper Rice. You can request pepper not to be added if the kids cannot take spicy food yet. Pour in either the Honey Brown sauce, or the Garlic Soy Sauce, or a combination of the two, and mix well to enjoy! This is the monkies' fave dish from Pepper Lunch... but after tasting the EIGHT (!) new dishes, they are not so sure anymore.


Meat Trio Deluxe ($16.90)


Meat lovers will love this ultimate combo! And that would include Ash who is on a carnivorous streak currently. Juicy chickensteak? Check. Tender BBQ beef slices? Check. Flavourful hamburg steak? Check.


Drizzle the special BBQ sauce, flip the meat over the hot teppan to ensure that the meat is cooked, and it is all done! Needless to say, Ash practically finished nearly everything on his own... with me barely managing a tiny nibble. *sob*


Seafood Trio Deluxe ($17.50)


While Ash is a meat lover, Ayd is more of a seafood lover. Out of the eight new dishes, there was only one that caught his immediate attention. Because he definitely cannot turn down a hot platter of salmon steak, saba and succulent Japanese scallops!


Both the Meat Trio Deluxe and Seafood Trio Deluxe are served with a bowl of rice so for those with a larger appetite, these two platters sure provide great value and variety!

Salmon & Prawn Carbonara ($12.90)


Now this was THE highlight for the Diva!


I don't think carbonara needs any introduction but the unique feature of this Pepper Lunch dish is the fun lies in preparing the dish at your seat! Kids (and adults) get to mix in the carbonara sauce on their own. For a finishing touch, pour in the egg sauce to allow the sauce to thicken and it is all ready.


No words needed I suppose... just a look of satisfaction on Ale's face.


I stole a few mouthfuls (when Ale was not looking) and was pleasantly surprised that the salmon and prawns tasted really fresh. For $12.90, it is a pretty good deal - and kids get to have a bit of fun too!

Seafood Cheesy Risotto ($12.90)


If you are more of a rice person, then the new category to the Pepper Lunch menu might just be down your alley. The Seafood Cheesy Risotto boasts generous servings of salmon and prawns, risotto with corn atop it, and creamy sauce. All sizzling on a hot plate.


Pour in the cheesy sauce, mix well to ensure that each and every pearly grain of rice is coated with the delicious sauce. And when the cheese is melted, it is pure heaven!


Okay, so maybe the photo doesn't do the dish justice but the rice was all sticky and gooey... in a good cheesy way of course!

Or if you prefer your sauce to be tomato-based then go for this instead.

Beef Cheesy Risotto ($12.90)


Similar in set-up to the Seafood Cheesy Risotto but served with quality U.S. beef slices and tomato sauce instead, the Beef Cheesy Risotto is an upgrade for a heartier treat!


Mixed Katsu Toji ($13.90)


Are you a fan of Katsu-don? Then be sure to try the Mixed Katsu Toji which consists of golden fried chicken cutlet, ebi fry and beef slices... all sizzled together with scrambled eggs accompanied with toji sauce, together with a bowl of rice. All for just $13.90. Pretty value for money, if you ask me.

Chicken Katsu Curry Rice ($12.90)


Finally, I have come to MY favourite part of the meal. JAPANESE CURRY!

I love Japanese curry so I apologise in advance if I sound bias. Because Pepper Lunch's Chicken Katsu Curry Rice is simply da bomb! Golden fried chicken cutlet, mushroom and corn with Japanese Curry - that is classic comfort food right there.


And the best part? I got to savour it at my own pace, thanks to the sizzling Teppan which helps to keep the food warm.


Ebi Fry Curry Rice ($12.90)


If you prefer prawns instead of chicken but still love curry, the Ebi Fry Curry Rice is an excellent alternative.


With so many dishes to sample, it was a good thing my parents joined us for the meal too. And their verdict? They loved the risotto, meat and seafood trio dishes which goes to show that Pepper Lunch is a great dining experience for everyone in the family!


But we were not done. Not when Ayd chanced upon 'Beef Aglio Olio ($12.90)' on the menu.


And being a huge Aglio Olio fan as well, I guess he somehow found extra space in his tummy to accommodate this. How? Don't ask me.


And speaking of extra space in tummies, there is an old legend that speaks about having different stomachs for desserts, no?


In Ale's case, it must be true.


Pepper Lunch has relaunched its generous vanilla soft serve ice creams with 2 new flavours, Yuzu and Strawberry, on top of its usual Caramel and Choco Nuts. At only $1.90 per cup, it is definitely the best way to finish off a Pepper Lunch meal!


So the next time you are looking for a family-friendly and affordable dining experience with the family, why not pay Pepper Lunch a visit? The kids will love it. After all, it is not often that they are allowed to play with their food! LOL.


Heading down to Pepper Lunch and wish to pay even lesser for the food?

SIMPLE!

Pepper Lunch would like to offer an exclusive discount of 15% off any ala carte dishes to my readers!

Just quote “CHEEKIEMONKIES” when placing your order at any of the 7 Pepper Lunch restaurants in Singapore.
*Promotion valid till 30th September 2017.




For more information on Pepper Lunch's locations and menu offerings, visit www.pepperlunch.com.sg or stay updated with all promotions at its Facebook page.


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