The best things to do in Singapore this weekend (Sep 20-23)

Make the best of your weekend with our top picks of things to do, see and more in Singapore
singapore tea festival
By Time Out Singapore editors |
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Need ideas on what to do or where to go this weekend? Fill up your itinerary with our guide to the best parties, shows, art exhibitions and more happening around town this Thursday through Sunday. 

RECOMMENDED: Top 10 things to do this month

1
The Piano Guys
Music, Classical and opera

The Piano Guys

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YouTube sensation – The Piano Guys – returns with their signature classical take on mainstream pop tunes. Along with Jon Schmidt on piano and Steven Sharp Nelson on cello, videographer Paul Anderson and producer Al van der Beek make up the team behind the successful series of self-made videos which have garnered over one billion views since 2009.

2
Ilo Ilo
Film

BYO Cinema

icon-location-pin City Hall
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Raise a toast for the Singapore Film Commission's 20th anniversary and celebrate this exciting moment with free screenings of five local films at various locations, including the Singapore Flyer, the Botanic Gardens and Dhoby Ghaut Green. Lay down your picnic mat and basket for the light-hearted musical comedy 881 (September 1), the nostalgic Children of Heaven remake Homerun (September 22), the ultimate scream fest 23:59 (October 13), the heartfelt story of Ilo Ilo (October 20), and if you're in the mood for food, Ramen Teh (November 10). Come early and grab yourself some popcorn, cotton candy and other local snacks to munch on while watching the films.    

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3
hybrid brain
Art, Galleries

Hybrid Brain

icon-location-pin Bukit Merah
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Look through the eyes of artist Entang Wiharso at Hybrid Brain where he showcases his latest body of works produced in Yogyakarta and Rhode Island as an Indonesian and American respectively. The art pieces play around the issues of identity, belonging and otherness in a society where acceptance and integration are rare privileges laced with ideology, social statuses and genetic heritage. 

4
ntu cca, free jazz
Art

Stagings. Soundings. Readings. Free Jazz II

icon-location-pin Bukit Merah
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NTU Centre for Contemporary Art revisits Free Jazz this year since its debut in 2013 with a series of talks and performances. This year's lineup sees international and local artists come together to reshape formates and modes of display. Showcases include Maria Loboda's installation of potted trees, Heman Chong's participatory work between a member of the public and an instructor, Tyler Coburn's multi-part work that features an orchid hybrid and a reading of Richard Roe's memoir.

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5
Singapore photography festival Singapore Nguan
Photo: Singapore Nguan
Art

Singapore International Photography Festival

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The Singapore International Photography Festival (SIPF) was the first of its kind when it premiered in 2008, and this year’s sixth edition promises to showcase even more works by South-East Asian artists. The festival includes a slew of exhibitions, workshops, and public talks held at various locations, including Deck, Gillman Barracks, The Arts House, Japan Creative Centre, Esplanade Tunnel and the National Design Centre. This year's theme is Like You, Me, Everybody Else takes a look into intimate realms and broader narratives connected by various human experiences. All works are carefully selected for their universal appeal that allows viewers from all walks of life the ability to relate.    

6
S.E.A Aquarium
Things to do

Spooky Seas

icon-location-pin Sentosa
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Send the little ones straight into the pirates' lair to meet the Sea Witch and Caption Spooks in this marine-themed Halloween event at SEA Aquarium. Come face to face and learn more about five of the rarest and bizarre marine animals, including bumphead parrotfish, elephant fish, paddlefish, tasselled wobbegong shark and vampire fish. There are also exciting scavenger hunts, talks, meet-and-greet sessions with mascots Mai and Sam, and more.

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7
Wu Guanzhong
Photo: Wu Guanzhong
Art, Galleries

Wu Guanzhong: Expressions of Pen & Palette

icon-location-pin City Hall
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The National Gallery Singapore opens its doors and invites all art types for a celebratory toast, marking the centennial year of the artist’s birth in 2019. With a flair for seamlessly blending Chinese ink and Western modernism, Chinese painter Wu Guanzhong’s gorgeous inked masterpieces are propped up to demonstrate the link between his artistic creations and the literary writing selected from Singapore’s National Collection and a key Southeast Asian private compilation.

8
Before It All Goes: Architecture from Singapore’s Early Independence Years, Darren Soh
Art, Photography

Before It All Goes: Architecture from Singapore’s Early Independence Years

icon-location-pin Rochor
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Before losing them to gentrification, see Singapore's iconic buildings such as the Pearl Bank Apartments, People's Park Complex, Golden Mile Complex and Golden Mile Tower in pictures as photographer Darren Soh presents his solo exhibition at the Objectifs. The showcase features long-term documentation of these buildings, as well as four other sites that are slated to be demolished or have already gone from their original locations. To learn more, drop by for a talk by Darren Soh himself on September 4 from 7.30pm to 9pm, or sign up for his seminar ($45) on September 8 from 1pm to 4pm.  

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9
Lim Cheng Hoe - Painting Singapore
Art, Galleries

Lim Cheng Hoe: Painting Singapore

icon-location-pin City Hall
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Considered to be one of the city's finest watercolourists, see Singapore through Lim Cheng Hoe's lenses as he showcases 60 distinctive works of art which beautifully capture the evolving scenes from the 1930s to the 1970s. The artist's dedication towards plein-air painting influences the elements featured in his art, including the effects of light and weather on the landscapes of the city, as well as motifs such as kampongs, boat traffics, hilltop views and more that oozes a sense of local identity.      

10
Trees Of Life
Art, Contemporary art

Tree of Life: Knowledge in Material

icon-location-pin Bukit Merah
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The NTU Centre for Contemporary Art delves into the study of natural materials – in a biological, social, geo-political and historical context – with their upcoming exhibition. Placing an emphasis on plants that are endemic to Asia (like mulberry and the lacquer tree), Trees of Life explores the characteristics, properties and diverse usages of these intriguing species. Beyond the exhibition itself, there'll also be complementary talks and seminars that expand on the complex issues surrounding these seemingly unassuming plants – guaranteeing an all-encompassing experience. 

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11
Wind Walkers: Theo Jansen’s Strandbeests
Art, Installation

Wind Walkers: Theo Jansen’s Strandbeests

icon-location-pin Marina Bay
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When art, science, engineering and performance meet, nothing short of a ‘new species on Earth’ happens. Witness 13 large-scale Strandbeests – which translates to ‘beach animals’ in Dutch – move in a startlingly like-life fashion in the galleries. These wind-powered machines, made from everyday materials, are the brainchild of Theo Jansen, a sculptor from the Netherlands who has spent the last 28 years developing these unique kinetics sculptures. The largest of them all is Animaris Siamesis which measures 10m in length and weighs over 240kg.

12
The Little Prince: Behind the Story
Things to do

The Little Prince: Behind the Story

icon-location-pin City Hall
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The Little Prince is probably one of the world's most widely read books – we all know the famous, oft quoted phrases from this French book published in 1943 from our childhood that has since been translated into 300 languages. Throwback to your salad days (or introduce your kids to this book) with this exhibition dedicated to this iconic book through rare philatelic materials, hand-drawn illustrations and artefacts – some of which have never been exhibited outside of France. 

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13
Building History: Monuments in Bricks and Blocks
Things to do, Exhibitions

Building History: Monuments in Bricks and Blocks

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Lego fans, here's one for you. Building History: Monuments in Bricks and Blocks is a travelling exhibition that features eight models of Singapore national monuments, constructed using over 110,000 LEGO bricks. Iconic landmarks include the National Museum of Singapore, Jurong Town Hall, Sultan Mosque, and St Andrew’s Cathedral – with the tallest model standing at 1.1m high and the heaviest at 40kg. 

14
Marvel Studios: Ten Years of Heroes
Things to do

Marvel Studios: Ten Years of Heroes

icon-location-pin Marina Bay
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Marvel fans, get your superhero fix at ArtScience Museum. This exhibition brings 19 Marvel movies from the past decade together – showcasing the art, tech and sets behind the films. From Iron Man to Black Panther, chart the evolution of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and find out how it’s become a worldwide phenomenon.

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15
Playeum 'Going Play-ces'
Kids, Exhibitions

Playeum's 'Going Play-ces'

icon-location-pin Bukit Merah
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What devasting effect does plastic pollution have on our seas and marine life? Can we live without light from the sun? Explore new places through various landscapes such as the sea, jungle and city in this hands-on exhibition for kids aged one to 12 at Playeum's Children Centre for Creativity.

16
Amek Gambar (Taking Pictures): Peranakans and Photography
Art, Photography

Amek Gambar: Peranakans and photography

icon-location-pin City Hall
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Trace the evolution of photography in Southeast Asia through the lens of the Peranakan community as you admire the collection of over 200 photographs, donated by Mr and Mrs Lee Kip Lee, that runs the gamut from old school monochrome images to dazzling digital displays. Through its exploration of the candid and intimate moments shared by early Peranakan families, the exhibition also brings forth issues surrounding identity and connectedness.

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17
The More We Get Together
Photo: Mr Khor Ean Ghee
Things to do

The More We Get Together

icon-location-pin City Hall
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Ah, playgrounds. It brings back so many nostalgic memories of the carefree days of our youth. That feeling of swinging on monkey bars 'til your hands go raw, running barefoot across the sandpit and giggling on see-saws.  Relive those fond childhood moments once again as the National Museum of Singapore presents its upcoming exhibition The More We Get Together: Singapore's Playgrounds 1930-2030. In collaboration with the Housing & Development Board, the showcase will piece together the development of playgrounds in Singapore throughout the decades and how it's shaped the lives of Singaporeans across the island-city.

18
You've Got Mail, Singapore Philatelic Museum
CHRISTIANC
Things to do

You've Got Mail

icon-location-pin City Hall
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When's the last time you've sent someone a letter? Revisit the good ol' pre-internet and email days and rediscover the joys of handwritten letters with Singapore Philatelic Museum's two-part exhibition, which showcases more than 200 award-winning decorative envelopes from the Washington Calligraphers Guild and over 150 unique stamps like holographic and chocolate-scented ones and other philatelic materials. 

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19
untitled 2018 (the infinite dimensions of smallness)
Photo: National Gallery Singapore
Art, Contemporary art

untitled 2018 (the infinite dimensions of smallness)

icon-location-pin City Hall
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Chiang Mai-based contemporary artist Rirkrit Tiravanija presents his latest work, untitled 2018 (the infinite dimensions of smallness), an immersive maze installation that blurs the line between art and audience. Made entirely out of bamboo, the maze stands at 4m and is inspired by traditional scaffolding seen in Asian countries like Hong Kong and Thailand. At the centre of the maze lies a minuscule tea house, where visitors can enter to experience an authentic Japanese tea ceremony.

20
The Luggage Market
Shopping, Markets and fairs

The Luggage Market

icon-location-pin City Hall
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Looking to refresh your waredrobe? You're in luck. Head down to The Luggage Market to pick up some new-old items. There'll be over 45 booths hawking preloved goods straight out of – you guessed it – luggages. The flea market will be on every Sunday so come rummage through all the luggages and pick out your next hottest outfit.

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21
Madame Tussauds' Marvel 4D Experience (placeholder)
Things to do, Exhibitions

Madame Tussauds' Marvel 4D Experience

icon-location-pin Harbourfront
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Avengers assemble! Be a part of the superhero squad at this immersive exhibition featuring life-sized wax figurines of Iron Man and Captain America, and a 4D experience of your favourites fighting villains on the streets of Singapore. Sounds like something we think every Marvel fan need to check out. 

22
Into the Wild
Credit: ArtScience Museum
Art

Into the Wild

A rainforest sprouting from the floors of the ArtScience Museum? You'll get just that, thanks to a virtual reality adventure that'll take you on an immersive journey into the thick of Southeast Asia's rainforests. Spot orangutans and endangered Sumatran tigers, then plant a virtual tree – because for every one planted, an actual tree's planted in Rimbang Baling, Sumatra.

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23
Syonan Gallery: War and its Legacies
Photo: William Goh
Art

Surviving the Japanese Occupation: War and its Legacies

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To mark – not commemorate – the 75th anniversary of the fall of Singapore, there'll be an exhibition set in the Old Ford Factory, which was where the British surrendered to the Japanese forces on February 15, 1942. Spread across four zones, take in the diary entries, identity cards and war campaign documentary paintings on display, then reflect on the solemn beginnings of our nationhood.

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