Nov 9, 2016

Arts in Your Neighbourhood is Back this Month & Here're my Top 7 Picks for Families! + GIVEAWAY


Appreciating the arts and enjoying art performances with the family need not involve trotting down to a theatre and sitting all hushed in the seats. In fact, experiencing the arts can be very accessible - AND FREE! - as the monkies and I found out last year.

Arts in Your Neighbourhood (AYN) is a programme under the Arts for All initiative by the National Arts Council. This programme aims to provide enriching arts experiences for everyone at their doorsteps, and features a series of free and enjoyable arts activities by established artists and arts groups, at various parts of the island right at where you stay.

Taking place twice yearly in March and November, AYN is back this month from 10 November 2016 and lasts all the way until 27 November 2016. Just in time for the year end school holidays!

Packed with entertaining, fun and interactive performances and activities, AYN is a great way for everyone to experience the arts in your very own neighbourhood, whether you are catching an arts performance for the first time or a seasoned arts-goer. Have I already mentioned that ALL programmes are FREE of charge? Some require pre-registration but they remain free to everyone.

The monkies attended a theatre show in Nee Soon East last year and we loved how the show was a multi-faceted one which combined the live elements of animation and theatre, coupled with stirring Chinese Orchestra music.

And the show was clearly a hit with the residents too. As a result of the performances being held free in open areas, curious onlookers were attracted to the performing area which is exactly what AYN stands for - introducing and exposing Singaporeans to a variety of art forms including less encountered art forms such as traditional opera which is specially rearranged to be performed through Chinese chamber music instruments.

This year, AYN spans over three weekends, with more than 40 activities at 16 venues. This season’s town focus is on Bedok, with opportunities for participants to rediscover some of Bedok’s landmarks while getting acquainted with new ones like Bedok Town Square. Other neighbourhood venues featured include West Coast Park, Ang Mo Kio, Toa Payoh, Woodlands, Tampines and Pasir Ris Park, amongst others.

With so many performances and activities taking place, I have done the homework and picked the BEST family-friendly shows that AYN will be offering this year.

Here are my TOP 7 Picks:

1. The Enchanted Flute
by Paper Monkey Theatre

Date: Sat 19 Nov 2016
Time: 4pm & 6pm
Venue: West Coast Park (Playground near Carpark 3)

Date: Sat, 26 Nov
Time: 4pm & 6pm
Venue: Pasir Ris Park (Playground near Carpark E)

*Pre-performance fringe activities start from 3pm & 5pm.

Specially commissioned for November's AYN, The Enchanted Flute is a theatrical puppetry performance told through the movements of Paper Monkey Theatre's hand-crafted puppets with live music accompaniment by SA The Collective and is inspired by Malay culture and heritage.

In addition to the unique immersive theatrical experience, families can also look forward to an array of fringe activities on both event dates, including roving music performances, interaction with giant bubbles, parent-and-child hands-on craft activities, popcorn and balloons as the familiar playgrounds at Pasir Ris and West Coast Parks turn into unusual sites for pop-up performances. Some picnic mats will also be provided.

To register for the programme, visit
More details HERE.

2. Art in Construction

Date: Sat 19 Nov 2016
Time: 4pm – 7.30pm
Venue: Carpark @ Bedok Sports Centre (next to Bedok North St. 2)

How does closing a carpark in Bedok, converting it and bringing in a street-level arts & lifestyle carnival consisting workshops and band performances sound? Art in Construction is a one-of-its-kind closed carpark event organised right in the heartlands of Bedok!

Featuring a street carnival atmosphere, with music performances, interactive hands-on craft activities, mass dance sessions, visual arts installations, as well as a whole host of F&B options, this is one place that will be perfect for families!

More details HERE.

3. Time For Opera! 大戏来咯!
by Ding Yi Music Company and Traditional Arts Centre

Date: Wed 23 Nov 2016
Time: 7.30pm
Venue: Toa Payoh HDB Hub

Date: Sat 26 Nov 2016
Time: 7.30pm
Venue: Ang Mo Kio Central Stage

Also specially commissioned November's AYN, Time For Opera! recreates the opera-goer’s experience of the past with a modern take on a traditional opera set-up with rearranged classics and old-time opera favourites like 帝女花 and 薛平贵, played live by Ding Yi Music Company.

Hosted by actor Nick Shen, audiences can expect to be amazed by a spectacle of colour, tradition and artistry in this remarkable showcase of Chinese opera classics specially rearranged and performed through Chinese chamber music instruments. This definitely looks like a great show to bring the kids TOGETHER with the grandparents!

More details HERE.

4. The Three Belles
by Strange Fruit (Australia)

Date: Fri 11 Nov 2016
Time: 12pm & 1.30pm
Venue: Raffles Place Park (Lawn next to One Raffles Place)

Date: Sat 12 Nov 2016
Time: 5pm & 7pm 
Venue: Woodlands Civic Centre

Date: Sun 13 Nov 2016
Time: 5pm & 7pm
Venue: Our Tampines Hub


Photo Credit: David Cook
Performed by Melbourne-based Strange Fruit, The Three Belles will be brought into Singapore’s heartlands for the very first time. Fusing theatre, dance and circus and hoping to transport the audience into a dreamlike world of period charm and frivolity, audiences young and old alike can look forward to being mesmerised by the fluidity and gracefulness of The Three Belles as they dance, twist and turn to near-impossible angles in the air on five-metre high sway poles.

Photo Credit: Jeff Busby
More details HERE.

5. Bambam The Time Traveller
by Storywise

Date: 19 & 26 November 2016 (Sat)
Time: 3pm
Venue: Bedok Town Square (Between Bedok Mall and Bedok Interchange Hawker Centre)

Join storyteller Juriah Atan and play pretend with Bambam as he puts on his cardboard suit and brings you on a wonderful joyride of imagination around old Bedok. Hear the exciting folktale of The White Ants and the Great Flood told by his great-great-great-great grandmother and travel back in time when Bedok was a rain forest and animal and trees could talk.

The fun continues after the performance with engaging craft activities inspired by the stories for registered participants.

To register for the programme, visit
More details HERE.

6. Wow! Wayang
by Sri Warisan

Date: 26 November 2016 (Sat)
Time: 7pm
Venue: Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park (Activity Lawn II)

Date: 27 November 2016 (Sun)
Time: 7.30pm
Venue: Bedok Town Square (Between Bedok Mall and Bedok Interchange Hawker Centre)

Introduce traditional shadow play to your child and marvel together as stories come alive with the movements of Wayang Kulit puppets dancing in sync to the live accompaniment of Gamelan music, projected against a larger-than-life screen

From the tale of Singapore’s progress from a fishing village to a modern city, to a fictional twist of superheroes restoring peace in a Malay village, watch closely as these stories and more unfold, and admire the juxtaposition of tradition and modernism presented creatively through puppetry in Wow! Wayang.

More details HERE.

7. Arts Imprints Around My Neighbourhood
by Quek Ling Kiong

Date: 20 November 2016 (Sun)
Time: 9.30am - 12pm & 2pm - 4.30pm
Venue: Bedok Town Square (Between Bedok Mall and Bedok Interchange Hawker Centre)

Be part of a music trail that takes you on a nostalgic trip around the Bedok Neighbourhood as they learn about the history and heritage of the town – on an open-top bus! Expect also a unique blend of pop-up music performances comprising familiar tunes at the newly refurbished Bedok Food Centre. Don’t forget to join in the grand finale drumming performance back at Bedok Town Square.

To register for the programme, visit
More details HERE.

For full programme listings and to download programme brochure, visit:

Better yet, follow Arts For All's Facebook page at and instagram account (@artsforallsg) to stay updated on the latest happenings of upcoming events and shows!


Thanks to AYN, I have THREE Limited Edition AYN tote bags with premiums up for grabs!

The 3 winners have been picked:

1. Doris Lim
2. Dawn Kang
3. Adeline Tan Huixiu

CONGRATS! Each of you has won a Limited Edition AYN tote bag filled with premiums!

Please email me at for prize collection details. Thanks!

All you have to do is the following:

1. LIKE Arts For All's Facebook page HERE.

2. Tell us which performance/show/activity that you would want to bring your family to and why? Leave your comment on our Cheekiemonkies' Facebook corresponding post HERE.

IMPORTANT: Complete all 2 steps for your entry to be valid. The AYN team will pick 3 winners randomly.

Giveaway ends on 19 November 2016, 2359 hours.

Good Luck!

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