The Anatomy of Performance—They Declare

The Anatomy of Performance—They Declare

Singapore International Festival of Arts (SIFA)

From left: (top) Susanne Kennedy and Markus Selg, ANGELA (a strange loop). Photo: Julian Röder. Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė, Vaiva Grainytė and Lina Lapelytė, Sun & Sea. Photo: Andrej Vasilenko. (bottom) Haresh Sharma and Chong Tze Chien, The Prose and the Passion. Photo: Joseph Nair. Trajal Harrell, The Romeo. Photo: Orpheas Emirzas.


March 28, 2024
The Anatomy of Performance—They Declare
May 17–June 2, 2024
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Organised by Arts House Limited and commissioned by the National Arts Council Singapore, Singapore International Festival of Arts (SIFA) returns from May 17 to June 2 with the theme The Anatomy of Performance—They Declare. Encapsulating the multiplicity of voices that the Festival welcomes and celebrates, festivalgoers can look forward to five newly commissioned productions and seven invited international presentations, as well as an engaging event that celebrates Singapore’s vibrant theatre scene and an all-new programming pillar for families and children. 

With They Declare, SIFA 2024 marks the final instalment of Festival Director Natalie Hennedige’s three-year curatorial arc, which sought to expand the possibilities of performance while expressing potent narratives and insights about complex issues today. Following SIFA 2022’s Ritual and SIFA 2023’s Some People, SIFA 2024’s They Declare is an evocative call for audiences to make space for the coexistence of different belief and ways of being, by reflecting on their relationship to the natural environment as well as the other voices and existences that surround them. 

Natalie Hennedige says, “The intent to illuminate how performance can be approached as a dynamic arena not only for artistic innovation and expression, but also to gather and be moved by shifting perspectives has been the driving force behind each edition of the Festival. With clear Singapore identity and international presence, we continue to build a Festival that responds to the now, encouraging all present to embrace difference, and different ways of being in these testing times.”

Continuing its tradition of fostering creative dialogue between international and local artists, SIFA 2024 showcases a diverse lineup:

SUARA / ORO RUA by Safuan Johari and Eddie Elliott blends original music and dance to envision a post-Anthropocene future.

Wilful Machine by Genevieve Chua offers a playful exploration of artificial intelligence and humanness in a data-driven world.

Haresh Sharma and Chong Tze Chien collaborate on The Prose and the Passion, bringing together characters from E.M. Forster’s novels and Sharma’s imagination.

REFUGE by The Observatory, a performance project that descends into the world of caves, combining sound, live music performance, moving image and light.

Sun & Sea by Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė, Vaiva Grainytė, and Lina Lapelytė features performers singing about mundane existence, worry, and the Earth’s decline in an imitation beach indoors.

Moby Dick by Yngvild Aspeli offers a 90-minute live adaptation of Herman Melville’s mythical work.

The Romeo by Trajal Harrell reimagines the iconic Shakespearean character through a speculative style of dancing.

ANGELA (a strange loop) by Susanne Kennedy and Markus Selg blurs the boundaries between virtual and real as ANGELA experiences everyday narratives in an endless loop.

Una Isla by Agrupación Señor Serrano explores the concept of “coming together” and its implications for humanity.

Fl(u)orescence and URL to IRL: SIFA Digital by Hong Xinyi present innovative responses to SIFA 2024’s lineup, bridging the gap between digital exploration and real-life experiences.

the light gleams an instant, a digitally-hosted experimental short film by Singapore film editor Natalie Soh, exploring the intersections between art, music and nature.

Additionally, SIFA 2024 presents Tomorrow and tomorrow, which sees Singapore theatre groups gather to present a host of new works in the making. Held over the opening and closing weekends of the Festival, Tomorrow and tomorrow is an extraordinary opportunity to witness the diverse practices of Singapore’s theatre groups on a single platform. 

In a bid to nurture new arts audiences, Little SIFA is an all-new programming pillar introduced for 2024. Offering engaging programmes like The Dancer’s Fair by Antigua i Barbuda and Leonardo! A Wonderful Show About A Terrible Monster by Manual Cinema, Little SIFA is suitable for young audiences as well as the young at heart. 

For the full festival lineup and ticket sales, please visit or here.

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Singapore International Festival of Arts (SIFA)
March 28, 2024

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