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Best things to do in Singapore this weekend (May 19-21)

Beat the heat with these cool events happening this weekend.

If you’re looking to add colour to your weekend, this is it. Sip on highballs at a cheery garden pop-up, revel in the presence of an EDM legend or get lost in a kaleidoscopic, animated universe at a new exhibition. These are this week’s selection of weekend must-do’s.

Photo: Zouk Singapore

Transfix presents Paul Van Dyk  

When: May 19, 10pm-3am
Where: Zouk Singapore, 3C River Valley Road, The Cannery Singapore, Singapore 179022

Diehard revellers, get your dancing shoes on. Grammy-nominated DJ Paul Van Dyk will helm the decks at Zouk on May 19, and the EDM maestro is bringing those high-octane transfix and progressive house beats to the dancefloor, so you know you’re in for an electrifying time. Tickets are $70 (with two free drinks). More info


Photo: Glen Grant

The Glen Grant Pop-Up

When: May 19-20, 5pm-11pm
Where: The Lawn at CHIJMES, 30 Victoria Street, Singapore 187996

Whisky tasting and highballs in this weather? Why, yes please. Glen Grant will be taking over The Lawn at CHIJMES for a whisky tasting pop-up where visitors can sample complimentary pours of Glen Grant’s Principal Collection — the 10YO, 12YO, 15YO, 18YO (select individuals) and Arboralis. Mini masterclass sessions to help you gain a deeper appreciation of whisky, whether you’re a whisky fan or just need an intelligent quip or two on your next date. Bottles are also available for purchase at the pop-up.

Photo: Marina Bay Sands

Where Your Senses Feast

When: May 15-28
Where: Marina Bay Sands, 10 Bayfront Avenue, Singapore 

You’ve been to ArtScience Museum’s Future World exhibition, but have you had an utterly IG-worthy dining experience amid its displays? Or feasted in the middle of Marquee with theatrical presentations and live demos on stage? All this and more are happening at Marina Bay Sands’ two-week-long food and wine festival happening across its F&B outlets, featuring over 30 events like rooftop parties, unique dining experiences and mixology masterclasses. In the mood to indulge? The headliner Six Star Dinner event (May 19-20) is an astrology-themed dinner featuring a five-course menu by a (Michelin) star-studded line-up: Tetsuya Wakuda of Waku Ghin, CUT by Wolfgang Puck’s executive chef Greg Bess and guest chef Stefan Stiller of three-Michelin-starred Taian Table in Shanghai. Dinner in a pop-up pavilion, which goes for an eye-watering $996 per pax, will be accompanied by live performances and an audiovisual spectacle. More info



When: May 18 to Aug 26, 9am-9pm daily
Where: National Design Centre Level 1 Atrium, 111 Middle Road, Singapore 188969

You’re used to seeing GIFs in the little rectangle that is your phone. But what if you could walk and discover a life-sized world of GIFs? Back for the third edition is what’s touted as Asia’s largest celebration of GIFs, GIFFEST is an immersive showcase where 50 local and international creatives will have an array of animated artworks presented in different ways, from a GIF ATM to a GIF DVD player (remember those?). And if the displays have you itching to create something of your own, there are hands-on workshops, talks and other fringe activities that may interest you. There are new fringe activities every two weeks, now that this third edition of the festival has been extended from its usual five days to a whopping three months. Free admission. More info

Photo: Block 2 Pictures Inc, Jet Tone Contents Inc

Vividly Maggie

When: May 13 to Jun 25
Where: ArtScience Cinema, ArtScience Museum Level 4, 6 Bayfront Avenue, Singapore 018974

In the mood to revisit Maggie Cheung’s film legacy? The Hongkong actress has retired from acting but fans can revisit Maggie’s works in the ArtScience Cinema’s latest film retrospective, Vividly Maggie. Seven iconic films, carefully curated to trace Maggie’s illustrious film career, will be screened throughout the six weeks: Song of the Exile (1990), Center Stage (1991), Comrades: Almost a Love Story (1996), Irma Vep (1996), In the Mood for Love (2000), Clean (2004) and Ashes of Time Redux (2008). Tickets from $10. More info

Photo: Singapore Repertory Theatre

Shakespeare in the Park: A Midsummer Night’s Dream

When: May 3 to 28, Tues-Sun 7.30pm
Where: Fort Canning Park

Whether you’re looking for a unique date night idea or are a theatre lover who loves a different stage experience, here’s something for you. The well-loved Shakespeare in the Park makes its return, so get those picnic baskets and mats ready for a night of theatre under the stars. Fort Canning Park will be transformed into the Kingdom of Athenia with ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ taking centrestage this year. The production will stay true to the text but to spice things up, it’ll be set in a contemporary setting, but still remain as enchanting nonetheless. Tix from $60-$138. More info

Photo: Gardens by the Bay

Tulipmania: Origins of the Tulip

When: Apr 21 to May 21, 9am-9pm
Where: Flower Dome, Gardens by the Bay, 18 Marina Gardens Drive, Singapore 018953

Stop and smell the roses, we mean, tulips as Tulipmania makes its return to Gardens by the Bay — and this time, you’ll get transported to Turkey too. The incredibly vibrant floral display will feature a landscape that has some of Turkey’s iconic landmarks and architecture. Plus, it takes on a historical element this year and traces the roots of the tulips, which were first cultivated by the Ottomans. In fact, one of the standouts in this year’s display are the tulips cultivated from the wild species in Turkey, which look different from the tulips that most are familiar with. Admission charge to Flower Dome starts at $12 for Singapore residents. More info

MOVE! Around the World

When: Apr 27 to Jul 15. Open Tue-Fri at 1pm-7.30pm, and Sat 9am-5.30pm
Where: La Galerie, Level 2, Alliance Française de Singapour, 1 Sarkies Road Singapore 258130

Inspired by the Jules Verne’s classic Around the World in 80 Days, this interactive exhibition delves into the history and evolution of French transportation. Visitors can expect to pore over rarely seen collectibles and travel memorabilia at the exhibition, and learn more about French transportation innovations that have changed the way people travel by land, sea and air, whether it’s by the TGV train or the A380 aircraft.  Free entry. More info

Photo: National Heritage Board

Love, Kebaya travelling exhibition

When: Apr 4 to May 24
Where: Various locations

The kebaya has been submitted as an entry for the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage List of Humanity, and the public can now learn more about the traditional garment with its roots in a shared heritage in Southeast Asian cultures by way of a travelling exhibition. The Love, Kebaya exhibition will be at the National Museum of Singapore’s Level 2 Platform from Apr 4-23, Gardens by the Bay Visitors Centre from Apr 26 to May 14 and Tampines Hub’s Our Festive Market from May 16-24.

On display are six kebaya designs created by craftpersons as well as photos of women from the Malay, Peranakan and Eurasian communities wearing the kebaya at different occasions, showing the garment’s evolution across different time periods. Admission is free. More info

Photo: H&B

Van Gogh: The Immersive Experience

When: Mar 1 to Oct 1
Where: Resorts World Sentosa, B1 Forum

More than five million people worldwide have stepped into this 360-degree immersive digital art experience, and now you can too. Meander your way through over 300 Van Gogh artworks across thematic zones to discover more about the iconic artist and his life. The main highlight is The Immersive Room, a 40-minute digital projection mapping that not only mesmerises, but allows visitors to literally be part of the scenery in Van Gogh’s most famous works. Need a little time for reflection and refuelling after? There’s a thematic café serving Janice Wong’s artistic sweet treats. Tickets from $15 (children) and $24 (adults). More info

Photos: Marina Bay Sands

Sneakertopia: Step Into Street Culture

When: Feb 25 to Jul 30
Where: ArtScience Museum, 6 Bayfront Avenue

Singapore’s first sneaker and street culture exhibition is a shoe-in, whether you’re a die-hard sneakerhead or just want to see JJ Lin’s personal sneaker and art collection up close (above, right). Yes, in the 10 colourful, immersive zones at this exhibition that has previously made waves in Los Angeles and New York, the Singapore edition has over 100 limited edition sneakers and 70 murals and installations. All of these take you into the world of sneaker and street culture and its cross influences with the worlds of hip hop, sports, and fashion. Tickets from $18. More info

Photo: Singapore Science Centre

Climate Changed

When: Permanent exhibition
Where: Hall B, Singapore Science Centre, 15 Science Centre Road

The unpredictable air-con weather we had last month was not just a coincidence — it’s due to climate change, of course. “Just like every other part of the world, Singapore is a victim of the impact of climate change and wetter condition in recent decades is one of the key indicators, especially over this region,” shares Associate Professor Lim Tit Meng of Science Centre Singapore. “If this trend continues, the rising sea level in this region can pose further challenges in the coming decades.”

To find out more about the very real threats of the climate crisis, head to the Climate Changed exhibition at Singapore Science Centre. Through immersive displays, interactive gameplays and other cool ways, you’ll get to learn more about climate change, the impact of our daily habits and what we can do to help at this permanent exhibition. Admission is free with every ticket to the Singapore Science Centre (from $8 for kids, $12 for adults). More info

Nature and Sustainability tours at Gardens by the Bay

When: Every Saturday and Sunday
Where: Gardens by the Bay, 18 Marina Gardens Dr, Singapore 018953

GBTB’s new Nature and Sustainability tours, which just kicked off last month, are held every Saturday and Sunday. The hour-long guided walking tours will take participants through the lesser-known sustainability features of GBTB and how our natural environment, biodiversity and climate change are intertwined. Who knows, you may even uncover hidden gems at GBTB that you may otherwise have missed without a professional guide, like, a plant that smells like root beer. Yes, really. Read more hereFree for Singaporeans and residents; pre-registration required. More info


Photo: National Gallery Singapore

Living Pictures: Photography in Southeast Asia

When: Dec 2, 2022 to Aug 20, 2023
Where: Level 3, City Hall Wing, National Gallery Singapore, 1 St Andrew's Rd, #01-01, Singapore 178957

In this age of ubiquitous selfies, it’s easy to forget the role that photography played throughout history. This exhibition at the National Gallery Singapore, which traces the history of photography in Southeast Asia, is a reminder of that. Split into five thematic zones, it features over 300 works from the mid-19th century until present day — start your journey delving into colonial and war archives, through to today’s digital age. More info

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