We pick the top 10 events you should attend at the Voilah! France Singapore Festival

Sheila Chiang
Lifestyle contributor
Guests at the media conference. (PHOTO: Voilah! France Festival)

SINGAPORE – To be held from now to 17 Nov, with close to 100 supporting partners and 51 events over 6 weeks, the Voilah! France Singapore Festival is set to present the best of France-Singapore collaborations in culture, education, science, lifestyle, tourism and sports.

The Ambassador of France to Singapore, Marc Abensour says, “Voilah! attests to the ties forged between our two nations and the diverse line-up is a celebration of the strength of our friendship through the decades-worth of close collaboration across various sectors. This is why we believe the festival belongs to Singaporeans as much as it does to the French, and we hope to grow Voilah! as an avenue for new ideas that can only be made possible when our communities get together.”

There will be a range of exciting musical performances, art installations, French food and wine discovery workshops, science exhibitions, French literature workshops and the French Film Festival happening in conjunction with the Voilah! France Singapore Festival.

For the muso, the art connoisseur, the hands-on, the curious mind and the film enthusiast, there is something for everyone.

The sextet Opus Jam from France. (PHOTO: Voilah! France Singapore Festival)

For the muso

Opus Jam

Debuting in Singapore at Esplanade’s Voices series, Opus Jam is made up of Emmanuel Cappalaere (tenor), Julien Guilloton (bass), David-Alexandre Aquiba (beatboxing), Rémy Arenas (baritone), Nicolas Gabet (soprano) and Mathieu Becquerelle (tenor). It presents a combination of polyphony with a touch of humour and lightness, giving a new and unique spin on a cappella singing. Opus Jam is the proud holders of the Grand Prix of the Moscow Spring A Cappella 2017 festival.

Admission: S$40 excl. SISTIC fee. Ticketing information here.

When: 28, 29 Oct, 7.30pm

Where: Esplanade Recital Studio, Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay, 1 Esplanade Dr Singapore 038981

An artwork with the late legendary fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld by Jisbar Planche. (PHOTO: Voilah! France Singapore Festival)

For the art connoisseurs

Jisbar Exhibition

Immerse yourself in street art and gastronomy and witness a spectacular display of artworks by French artist Jisbar Planche. For the Opening Night happening on 4 Oct, 6pm to 9pm – Enjoy an evening of French arts, food and wine. Guests will delight in canapés, champagne and a collection 8 artworks by Jisbar Planche at the welcome reception. This will be followed by a specially curated 3-course menu paired with premium French wines from Xperience Restaurant. SO/Sofitel is offering a complimentary artisan cheese selection and a dozen Fine De Claire oysters for every Taittinger Champagne bottle purchased during Voilah.

Admission: Free for exhibitions. Opening night ticket S$108++. Ticketing Information here.

When: 4 Oct – 17 Nov, open 24 hours

Where: SO/Sofitel Singapore, 35 Robinson Road, Singapore 068876

PHOTO: Voilah! France Singapore Festival

Life Underground

A journey through the subways of the world and into the personal stories of their passengers in an immersive installation by Filmmaker and Artist Hervé Cohen, Life Underground invites visitors on a journey through the subways of the world and into the personal stories of their passengers.

Admission: Free

When: 9 to 31 Oct, 10am to 5pm

Where: National Museum of Singapore, 93 Stamford Rd, Singapore 178897

PHOTO: Voilah! France Singapore Festival

No Taste for Bad Taste

PHOTO: Voilah! France Singapore Festival

Curated by Jean-Charles de Castelbajac, the forty pieces exhibited have been carefully selected to represent the last ten years of French design production, and showcase works by Philippe Starck, Jean-Paul Gaultier, Ronan et Erwan Bouroullec, matali crasset, Mathieu Lehanneur, Noé Duchaufour-Lawrance, Christian Liaigre and Jean Nouvel, in a poetic scenography.

Admission: Free

When: 12 Oct to 16 Nov, 9am to 9pm

Where: National Design Centre, 111 Middle Rd, Singapore 188969

PHOTO: Laurent Quinkal, Cie Remue Menage

The Bear’s Mouth

Watch a horde of illuminated bears move around accompanied by extravagant dancers. A charming Master of Ceremonies walks on stilts and guides the whole procession. The art installation depicts travelers without borders as they migrate from town to town carrying the show on their shoulders. The graceful ballet offers an incredible discovery and an unbelievable encounter.

Admission: Free

When: 19, 20 Oct, 7pm and 9pm

Where: Gardens by the Bay, Supertree Grove, 18 Marina Gardens Dr, Singapore 018953

PHOTO: Voilah! France Singapore Festival

For the curious mind

Urban Mutations

The latest permanent exhibition at the Science Centre, Urban Mutations explores the topic of cities. According to projections by the United Nations, two thirds of the global population will be living in cities. With this surge in urbanisation, many initiatives and innovations are required to face this challenge. Structured around three topics – Cities under pressure, Urban earth and Urban futures – the exhibition provides visitors with the chance to become actors in the cities of the future.

Admission: Science Centre Admission applies. Ticketing information here.

When: From 25 Oct, 10am to 6pm

Where: Singapore Science Centre, 15 Science Centre Rd, Singapore 609081

Une Petite Nuit Au Lit explores the question of dreaming in public. (PHOTO: Voilah! France Singapore Festival)

Une Petite Nuit Au Lit by Cie Cahin-Caha as part of Arts in Your Neighbourhood

Taking place in our heartland neighbourhoods, this exhibition explores the concept of “How to dream in public?”. We spend, on average, twenty-four years of our lives in bed. Sleep. Or read, surf, eat, watch screens, cuddle, pray... then, travel in a world of dreams. This live performance showcases a night in the life of a group of errants, out of sync, a little lost, overflowing with obsessions and desires.

Admission: Free

When: 16, 17 Nov, 4pm and 7pm

Where: Our Tampines Hub (16 Nov), HDB Hub (17 Nov)

(PHOTO: Voilah! France Singapore Festival)

For the movie lover

French Film Festival 2019

The Singapore French Film Festival will be back from 4 to 17 November. Organised by the Embassy of France, in collaboration with local and distributors and partners, its 35th edition will feature an exciting lineup comprising of 25+ recently released movies for everyone including comedies, romance and dramas. This year, be ready for a special treat with the newly added Sexy Section which will showcase a selection of both contemporary and classic movies! Luc Besson fans will be able to catch some of his timeless cult classic films (Nikita, Leon, The Fifth Element) at The Projector where a selection of contemporary films by French director Mia Hansen-Løve will also be screened. And finally, for the first time, screenings of French animated movies.

Admission: Complete line-up coming soon on voilah.sg

When: 4 to 17 Nov

Where: Various Locations

(PHOTO: Voilah! France Singapore Festival)

For the foodie

Languedoc and Provence Grands Crus Wine Festival

Meet renowned wine producers from Languedoc and discover the region’s exceptional wines. Enjoy the scenery of FOC Sentosa with a fine spread of tapas food and free flow of wine. Special guests: Hervé Bizeul (Le Clos des Fées), Basile Guibert (Daumas Gassac, Terrasses du Larzac) and Sébastien Nore (Château Minuty). Grands Crus Wine Tasting from 6.30pm to 8.30pm and free flow of wine from 7pm to 10pm.

Admission: S$148. To purchase tickets, contact order@thevintageclub.sg

Where: FOC Sentosa, 110 Tanjong Beach Walk, 098943

When: 9 Oct, 6.30pm to 10pm

(PHOTO: Voilah! France Singapore Festival)

Cheese Appreciation Workshop

If you’ve ever wondered why there are more than 500 different cheeses in France and how different cheeses are produced by their texture, colour and smell? Why do French cheese makers use raw unpasteurized milk in their cheese, what is the impact of seasonality and aging on cheese and how do locals typically enjoy cheese in restaurants and at home? Join our certified Meilleur Ouvrier de France, Cheese Specialist and find out more.

Admission: S$80. Ticketing Information: Call +65 9012 1121 or email jessica.prevost@disciples-escoffier.asia

When: 15 Oct, 11am to 1pm, 2pm to 4pm

Where: Devan Nair Institute for Employment and Employability Institute, 80 Jurong East Street 21, Singapore 609607