The kids and I had a great time at the finale of this year’s Heritage Fest celebrations. We first went to the Singapore Art Museum for the Festival Finale’s Children’s Programs.

Drum Circle by One HeartBeat

From 2-3pm, the kids and I happily joined about 20-30 other kids and adults at the drum circle participation performance conducted by One HeartBeat Percussion Band.  Anyone could grab a seat in the circle, pick an instrument and start playing along to the beat.  My kids each picked a djembe while I was playing a shaker.  Mr Syed Ibrahim made it fun by making us play alternately by “sections,” e.g. kids only, adults only, boys only, girls only, etc.  He even invited some other performers who were part of the Heritage Fest Festival program to join the drum circle.  Some Bhangra performers, stilt walkers and drummers joined in the music.

Attack of the Swordfish by Act3 Theatrics

From 3:30-4pm, we had some good laughs while watching ACT 3 Theatrics‘ performance of the tale of Attack of the Swordfish.  We’ve been reading the story as part of our unit study on Singapore folk tales, and it was so much fun to see it as a funny and colorful stage performance.  The younger members of the audience, my 5-year-old son included, had so much fun interacting with the actors – warning the sleeping soldiers of the coming swordfishes, moving away while the swordfishes weaved in and out of the audience.  The “king” even consulted the audience about what he should do with his people’s swordfish problem and many of the kids eagerly voiced out their suggestions – “Kill the swordfish!” “Stop the fishermen!”  “Use banana leaves!”

Playing games with festival volunteers

After the drama performance and drum circle at the Singapore Art Museum, we walked over to the SMU campus green to see the food and arts and crafts booths.  We were met with some teenage festival volunteers who wanted to play some games with the kids.  They gave us balloons and played hopscotch and pick up sticks with the kids.  My son enjoyed playing games with them so much that he kept asking to go back and play with his new friends :)

While my son was in his 3rd round of pick up sticks, the caricature booth by caught my daughter’s eye.  She said she wanted her caricature done.  I figured that my son might complain later on if he didn’t have one, so, for $10 per person, they had their caricatures done in black and white.  The kids were having a bit of a hard time just sitting still for about 5-10 minutes while the cartoon artist was doing his job.  In the end, my daughter was happy with her portrait.  My son seemed curious and amused when he first saw his portrait, but soon after forgot about it and just wanted to play more games with the teenage volunteers roaming around the festival. Oh well.

Our caricature & artist from

It was soon time to go home.  We spent 4 hours at the Heritage Fest Finale.  There were a lot of things to do, see, hear, eat and enjoy.  Time well spent.  Lots of fun learning.  Looking forward to Heritage Fest Singapore 2011!

playing djembe

Playing djembe too

Bhangra performers

Stilt walkers

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