Things to do in the City Hall, Singapore


Things to do in City Hall
Image adapted from (clockwise from top-left):
National Gallery Singapore, Silent Disco Asia, Urban Redevelopment Authority, National Gallery Singapore

After months of non-stop hustling in school and at work, the long-awaited year-end holiday season is finally upon us. Instead of spending the rest of the year solely wrapped up in our annual Christmas festivities, end 2019 with Arts in the Civic District, which includes a handful of activities happening throughout December.

From getting hands-on at free craft workshops to catching the NYE fireworks show, here are some activities to jio your loved ones for:


1. Dance the night away at a unique disco party


Silent Disco
Image credit:
Silent Disco Asia

It’s not a party without some feel-good bops – round up your buds for a Silent Disco Asia party at Unwind @ Civic District: Eats & Beats to end the year off on a high note. 

For the uninitiated, you can switch between 3 different styles of music – which means you should get ready for some unsynchronised dance moves with fellow party animals. 

Silent Disco
Neon headphones that’ll be blasting different tunes
Image credit: Silent Disco Asia

Unwind @ Civic District: Eats & Beats
Date: 31st December 2019
Time: 8PM-1AM
Address: Empress Lawn, 9 Empress Place, Singapore 179556
Price: From $35
Website 

Get your tickets here.


2. Explore colourful installations like a lit-up outdoor maze


Light to Night Festival 2020
Image credit:
National Gallery Singapore

Ring in the start of a new year with a handful of light-centric exhibitions across landmarks like Esplanade and the Padang. Unlike conventional art galleries, the 4th instalment of Light to Night Festival happening in 2020 includes interactive areas like a lit-up outdoor maze.

Light to Night Festival 2020
Colourful outdoor Optical Maze
Image credit: National Gallery Singapore

A must-see is the Optical Maze, which is a 2-in-1 structure that’s a pavilion by day and a colourful maze by night.

Light to Night Festival 2020
Date: 10th-19th January 2020
Time: 10AM-12AM
Address: National Gallery Singapore, Asian Civilisations Museum, The Arts House, Victoria Theatre & Victoria Concert Hall and Esplanade
Price: Free
Website 


3. Attend free DIY classes and music instrument trials for kids


kids arts and craft
Makeshift binoculars made during a craft session
Image credit: Asian Civilisations Museum

For most of us, TGIF officially begins when we clock off from work in the evening. But at the Asian Civilisations Museum, the upcoming Fun-tastic Friday will start from noon and includes tons of fun-filled activities for the kiddos – all for free!

Kids can work together with their newfound buds on DIY projects like creating kaleidoscopes and making personalised tote bags to take home as souvenirs. 

orchestra
Lunchtime Concerts
Image credit: Asian Civilisations Museum

There’s also an afternoon concert performed with a mix of Chinese and Jazz tunes for the kids to bop to on their play mats. Best of all, they’ll get to try their hand at playing the instruments at the end of each session.

Fun-tastic Fridays
Date: 20th December 2019
Time: 12PM-5PM
Address: Asian Civilisations Museum, 1 Empress Place, Singapore 179555
Price: Free
Website 


4. Watch a podcast recorded live & a dance performance about our MRT


nathan hartono podcast
Good Hang podcast by Jon Cancio and Nathan Hartono
Image credit: Esplanade

On lazy days, there’s nothing better than kicking back and listening to a podcast or playlist on loop. This December, you’ll get to do just that – with the added bonus of witnessing how the magic happens before your eyes for free.

As part of Come Together’s collective of free performances all month, you’ll be able to watch and listen to Good Hang on 18th December, where Jon Cancio and Nathan Hartono dive into topics of their choice. Other highlights to look forward to include K-East’s dance number themed after our MRT system, and music performances like An Elfie Guide to Surviving the Holiday Season, a Christmas musical that captures the festive spirit. 

Come Together
Date: Now till 31st December 2019
Time: Varies depending on performance
Address: 1 Esplanade Drive, Singapore 038981
Price: Free
Website


5. Celebrate the New Year with a colourful fireworks show


Things to do in City Hall
Catch the New Year’s Eve fireworks from ACM lawn
Image credit: Asian Civilisations Museum

Wave goodbye to 2019 with an entire day of family fun during New Year’s Eve @ ACM. If you haven’t had the time to explore the myriad of art galleries here that feature fashion textiles, ceramics, and trade – you’ll get to do so before some exhibitions get switched out next year.

kids doing arts and craft
Image credit:
Asian Civilisations Museum

Alternatively, spend the afternoon exploring the special exhibition Living with Ink: The Collection of Dr Tan Tsze Chor then work on customising your own Chinese art canvas bag inspired by the exhibition with your kids before you usher in the new year with a stunning New Year’s Eve fireworks show from the ACM Green.

NYE@ACM
Date: 31st December 2019
Time: 10AM-10PM
Address: Asian Civilisations Museum, 1 Empress Place, Singapore 179555
Price: Admission fee to galleries apply
Website 


6. Explore an array of contemporary art installations 


Held at 11 various spots across the island, Singapore Biennale 2019 offers an impressive line-up of over 150 artworks by artists and art collectives from Singapore and around the region.

Singapore Biennale 2019
Scrolls, photos and audio recordings of migrant workers and Singapore students will be on display

For a blast to the past, drop by National Gallery Singapore to visit the 34 artworks on display  like Telling stories from outside and inside by artist Verónica Troncoso. Drawing upon a range of materials derived from interview transcripts from her conversations with migrant workers and local students, Troncoso’s work delves into stories of migration and mobility across different generations in Singapore.

Singapore Biennale 2019
Date: Now till 22nd March 2020
Time: Sat-Thur 10AM-7PM | Fri 10AM-9PM
Address: National Gallery Singapore, 1 Saint Andrew’s Road, Singapore 178957
Price: From $10-$25 | Free for selected categories
Website 

Get your tickets here.


7. Customise your own seals and letters 


kids arts and craft
Image credit:
Asian Civilisations Museum 

Kickstart your final 2019 weekend fun with Saturdays@ACM: Signed, Sealed, Delivered. As its name suggests, this interactive craft session is all about seals and letters – handmade by you. Take things the old-school route by penning down a heartfelt letter to your closest kakis or loved ones and marking it with your choice of seal for a special touch.

calligraphy exhibition ACM
Calligraphy exhibition
Image credit: @acm_sg

You can also check out the impressive exhibition of Chinese seals or catch an intriguing show on calligraphy art.

Saturdays@ACM: Signed, Sealed, Delivered
Date: 28th December 2019
Time: 1PM-5PM
Address: Asian Civilisations Museum, 1 Empress Place, Singapore 179555
Price: Free
Website 


8. Toast to 2020 with champagne and festive melodies


The Philharmonic Orchestra’s New Year’s Eve Countdown Concert 2020
Image credit:
The Philharmonic Orchestra

For those looking to take a break from the usual OTT New Year’s Eve countdown performances in Singapore, The Philharmonic Orchestra’s New Year’s Eve Countdown Concert 2020 has just the right mix of celebration and relaxed ambience awaiting you.

Plus, you’ll get to sip on champagne while tuning in to live orchestra music, before catching a fireworks show happening nearby at Empress Lawn.

The Philharmonic Orchestra’s New Year’s Eve Countdown Concert 2020
Date: 31st December 2019
Time: 10PM-12AM
Address: Victoria Theatre and Concert Hall, 9 Empress Place, Singapore 179556
Price: Standard Tickets: $42 | Concession Tickets: $32 (exclusive of SISTIC ticketing fee)
Website 

Get your tickets here.


9. Get teleported to ‘50s Singapore through a photography exhibition


The Arts House
Image credit:
@jeronimoloco

To most of us, it’s hard to picture the urban jungle we live in today as a mere fishing village with scattered kampongs. But if you’ve ever wanted a glimpse into the past, The Arts House has exhibitions like one of Marjorie Doggett’s works that showcases photographs of Singapore’s past buildings and landmarks. 

The gallery will be opening its doors until the clock strikes 12 midnight for 1 night only on the last day of the year so take this chance for your own “Night at the Museum”.

The Arts House
Date: 31st December 2019
Time: 10AM-12AM
Address: 1 Old Parliament Lane, Singapore 179429
Price: Free
Website 


10. Admire a collection of ancient paintings by renowned ink masters


Chua Soo Bin: Truths & Legends
Chua Soo Bin

Image credit: National Gallery Singapore

With a tap of a finger, any picture can be instantly taken and uploaded to the ‘gram today. But photography was not always that simple. 

Understand history a little better by browsing through a series of nearly 100 black and white photographs in Chua Soo Bin: Truths & Legends, an exhibition that showcases 14 Chinese ink masters and their works before our time of technological advancement. 

Chua Soo Bin: Truths & Legends
Date: Now till 28th June 2020
Time: 10AM-7PM
Address: National Gallery Singapore, 1 Saint Andrew’s Road, Singapore 178957
Price: From $15 | Free for Singaporeans and Permanent Residents
Website 

Get your tickets here.


Things to do in Singapore


Whether you’re hoping to get artsy with DIY crafts, catch a musical performance, or simply spend a day browsing through galleries filled with artworks, Arts in the Civic District is packed with all kinds of programmes for an adventure this year-end and early 2020.

To commemorate the year, take the little ones out for kid-friendly activities like Fun-tastic Fridays or lock in some quality bonding time with your family and friends with an explosive fireworks show that’s bound to end of the year with a bang!

Find out more about Arts in the Civic District events here


This post was brought to you by National Arts Council.