13 Nov – URBN.SENI, the first ever Triennial Malaysia-Singapore Cultural showcase, is set to take place in Kuala Lumpur from this weekend!
URBN.SENI is happening at The Godown KL from this 16 to 24 November, bringing with it plenty of music, arts & crafts, films and movies for festivalgoers to enjoy.
Kicking off the week-long fun is a music-filled opening weekend, featuring both Malaysian and Singaporean acts. On 16 November, festivalgoers will first be treated to a "Young Blood" show. As the name suggests, the lineup features up-and-coming artists from Malaysia like singer-songwriter SHN, R&B singer NYK, garage-rock band The Fatalis and indie-band Youth Portal, as well as from Singapore such as indie-electronic duo .gif and teenage songstress Shye.
The next day, 17 November, "Urban Sounds" is bringing out the big guns like Malaysia's SonaOne and Singapore's Alif (SG), the rap sensations who are performing together after releasing a cross-border collaborative album earlier this year.
Other performers for the day include Singapore's rappers Fariz Jabba and Yung Raja, and pop and R&B singer-songwriter Charlie Lim, as well as Malaysia's alternative indie folk band Shuuna, Math Rock Band Playburst, and multi-instrumentalist beatmaker Shelhiel.
As mentioned above, music isn't the only thing featured at the showcase.
On 18 and 19 November, the best of Malaysian and Singaporean indie films will be screened at the Main Hall at The Godown KL from 6pm onwards on each day. Fans will also be able to interact with the directors and cast of the films during the screenings.
Films to be screened on 18 November are Jacen Tan's "Zombiepura" and Tan Wei Ting's "CA$H", while 19 November screenings are of Dain Said's "Bunohan" and Pavithran Nathan's "FARAH".
For stage play enthusiasts, the same venue will also host the theatre shows "Stereo Genmai" and "Missing" on 21 and 22 November from 8pm onwards.
Rounding up the artsy side of things are the Makers' Market and the visual arts showcase. The market will feature 20 creative makers and brands from Singapore and Malaysia under one roof, such as Nom Nom Plush, SayWhat?, Pew Pew Patches, Kanoe, Seniman Kakao, and TinyPinc.
Artisanal items, handcrafted wares, contemporary objects and collectibles will be showcased at, again, the Main Hall on 23 and 24 of November from 11.00am to 7.00pm.
Meanwhile, artworks from the Young Art Entrepreneurs Extend Programme will be showcased on the 1st Floor of the Concrete Building @ The Godown KL throughout the entire run of URBN.SENI. The exhibition features works by young artists from Singapore and Malaysia, who produced collaborative works during an arts residency programme hosted by the National Art Gallery (Balai Seni Negara).
What's a festival without good food and beverages? Festivalgoers will be spoilt for choice with the yummy treats available during the festival. On the opening weekend, Mixing It Up, a special pop-up bar, will feature mixologists Jayden Ong and Sharmaine Sie of Singaporean bar Nutmeg and Clove (No.33 on Asia's 50 Best Bars 2018) and Malaysian bartender CK Kho of KL bar Coley (No.27 on Asia's 50 Best Bars 2019).
Malaysian chef Chester Low (a.k.a. The Salted Chef) will also be providing bar bites on 16 November.
On 17 November, chef Nicholas Scorpion – the man behind Jing Ze Contemporary Asian Restaurant who earned his culinary chops at Singapore's Tipping Club – will create a special Singaporean-Malaysian menu called "A Tale of Two Cities", at the pop-up food bar at the Concrete Building @ The Godown KL.
The same venue will again serve great food on 23 and 24 November, with The Quarters making its first pop-up appearance in Malaysia and serving classic burgers with a modern Singaporean take. PPP Coffee, meanwhile, will be serving great brews during the Makers' Market.