From Saturday 6 October to Sunday 4 November, The Substation is presenting a programme titled Singapore Girl, or Heritage Deployed.
It comprises an eclectic range of events: an interactive experience where visitors get to try our take on the famed Singapore Girl interview process, a runway show by drag queen Becca d’Bus, and a theatre variety show produced by well-known actress Tan Kheng Hua.
The Substation is Singapore’s first independent contemporary arts centre. Established in 1990 by the late Kuo Pao Kun, it is known for its pioneering and experimental arts programming. Over the years, The Substation has worked with some of Singapore’s most critically acclaimed artists, writers and intellectuals including Alvin Tan, Goh Boon Teck, Amanda Heng, Lee Wen and Kok Heng Leun. The Substation is a recipient of the National Arts Council’s Major Grant from April 2017–March 2020.
As the second chapter of The Substation’s current programme season on heritage, Singapore Girl, or Heritage Deployed brings together artists, academics, and field specialists in order to open up a conversation around the iconic Singapore Girl.
The Singapore Girl is a quintessential example of deployed heritage, integral to Singapore’s postcolonial, nation-building narrative. As an internationally-marketed and renowned symbol of Asian hospitality, the Singapore Girl is an early instance and arguably the most successful example of how heritage (and fantasies of the Oriental Other) is packaged and exported to the rest of the world.
Singapore Girl, or Heritage Deployed is part of “Cities change. People die. Everything you know goes away”, which is The Substation’s year-long exploration of heritage in its multifarious forms: from landmark architecture and national icons, to the everyday commodification of nostalgia.
On the role the Singapore Girl plays in The Substation’s exploration of Singapore heritage, Artistic Director Alan Oei says, “Our last programmed looked at the issue of conservation, and the iconic modernist architecture that is under threat with En Bloc fever looming over all of us. The thrust of heritage conservation in the past has mostly focused on buildings and monuments. UNESCO World Heritage sites have demonstrably shown many countries how heritage can also be commodified and transformed into tourist attractions that have sometimes proven highly disruptive to the local economy. In other words, it’s double-edged. The same kind of complexity and ambiguity exists in the Singapore Girl who is much beloved, but also a flashpoint for feminism, objectification, and colonial hangovers.”
|Name||Type of Event||Date||Time||Location||Ticketing|
|Singapore Girl & the Chamber of Trials and Tribulations||Interactive Experience||6 October to 4 November||Thursday & Friday 6 – 9 pm Saturday & Sunday 3 – 9 pm||Gallery||Free with limited slots Book at : singaporegirlontrial.peatix.com|
|The Land of My Heart||Outdoor installation||Ongoing||N/A||The Substation facade||N/A|
|Who are you? (Singapore Girl)||Panel discussion||6 October||6 – 7.30 pm||Theatre||Free|
Register at: singaporegirlwho.peatix.com
|I Am Not a Witch||Film Screening||6 October||8.30 pm – 10.30 pm||Theatre||From$8 Peatix: notawitch.peatix.com|
|SAD: This Girl’s in Love with You||Sub After Dark – after hours programme||13 October||8 – 11 pm||Theatre||From $15|
|She’s A Great Way To Fly||Theatre Variety Show||Thursday to Sunday 26 – 28 October & 2 – 4 November||8 pm – 9.30 pm||Theatre||From $25 Peatix: greatwaytofly.peatix.com|