Decade-old and going strong

Free up your nighttime plans from 18-26 Aug guys. The Singapore Night Festival, Singapore’s most anticipated outdoor performing arts festival, is back, and this year, it’s taking a walk down memory lane and upping the ante for its milestone 10th anniversary jubilee with the theme “10 Magical Years”.

For this momentous year, they’re bringing back many of your favorite local acts from the past festivals and have them either do something amazingly different, or do what they’re already known for but leveled up.

Bloco Singapura for instance, founded in 2008 alongside the inauguration of the Night Festival then, is making a thunderous return to the festival by bringing 50 of their best drummers to Armenian Street and throwing a massive carnival that promises to be bursting with energy. For more musical entertainment, Timbre Music is making a comeback as well with their New Stream Brass Band, a local band that blends jazz, funk and hip-hop styles with more traditional New Orleans brass. Be prepared to join in the music-making too, as they’ll be handing out drums to passersby they encounter to make it that much more engaging.

Remember that kick-ass wrestling performance back in 2014? It’s coming back too, this time, as a pro wrestling collective called Grapple MAX Dojo, founded by one of the guys behind the last performance, Greg Ho. It’s gonna be an even more visceral experience this year, as Ho is now professionally trained (he quit his job and went to Japan to do so) in the theatrical art of pro wrestling. Expect to be up close and personal with the sweaty fighters as there will be no ring, no ropes and no barriers between you and them.

And of course, who can forget the jaw-dropping, record-breaking performance by illusionist Ning Cai where she escaped from a straightjacket while being suspended upside-down, high above the National Museum. This year, she’s performing under her new stage name, Mind Magic Mistress, and doing something completely different. She’ll be partnering with psychologist Paul Brook to perform mentalism (as inspired by the UK’s Derren Brown) on willing audiences in a strictly adults-only (18 and above) staging titled Pain/Pleasure. Leave the kids at home or with the grandparents for this one.

The full roster of performances and installations have yet to be announced, but other items that are making a comeback to keep on your radar include a contemplative installation art piece by Starlight Alchemy, a series of text-based performances by Centre 42 entitled Late-Night Texting, and a pole dance by exotic dance studio Brass Barre in partnership with women's cancer survivor group The Rose Diamonds (fun fact: the oldest student at Brass Barre is in her 70s).

Singapore Night Festival kicks off on 18 Aug with their annual Night Lights showcase of light art installations, culminating in three evenings of performances from 24-26 Aug. More details here.