Thursday, May 26, 2011

Teochew Opera performance at Ubin

Photos by Marcus Ng (Annotated Budak)

Did you catch the Teochew Opera performance (and getai show!) at Pulau Ubin last week (16-21 May 2011)? If you missed it, you can now relive the moment vicariously through the vivid photos of Marcus Ng, the Annotated Budak. You can also read Marcus' account on his blog.

The performance marked the birthday celebration of Taoist diety, Tua Pek Gong (literally, "grand old man") - the diety worshipped at the temple in Ubin town. The crowd sure looked plentiful and almost reminiscent of yonder years when the island population passes a thousand.

Don't be sad, you can now follow us on facebook too!
Photos by Marcus Ng (Annotated Budak)

Teochew opera in itself is also a rapidly disappearing art form in cosmopolitan Singapore. Just as most Singaporeans takes on the interweb in social media platforms like Facebook, traditional art forms must catch up with times and follow suit! Lo and behold, the teochew opera troupe that performed on Ubin has a Facebook page too! If you missed the performance or loved it so much and want to catch more of it, show your support on Facebook! They also announce their performance dates around Singapore (not just Ubin!) and you can catch them "live" at a venue near you!

In case you're eager to watch a piece of the performance right now, here's a video of the troupe's performance on youtube!

Mind you, Ubin celebrations are not all traditional wayang only, Tua Pek Kong probably does enjoy such modern entertainments as well!

Photos by Marcus Ng (Annotated Budak)

Friday, April 29, 2011

2011 Tua Pek Kong Celebration Dates

Tua Pek Kong is a Chinese Taoist deity popularly worshipped by the Chinese community on our island city. In fact, the temple located in the centre of the Pulau Ubin town is precisely dedicated to the Tua Pek Kong.

Annually, devotees would celebrate the birthday of each deity and Tua Pek Kong is no exception. The Tua Pek Kong temple would organise week long celebrations including traditional teochew opera (affectionately known in Malay as wayang by the locals, referring to performance) and modern getai (meaning song stage in mandarin) performances with bright lights and flamboyant singers in colourful costumes!

This year, the Pulau Ubin Tua Pek Kong Temple will be celebrating Tua Pek Kong Birthday from 16 May to 21 May 2011. There will be nightly wayang show (16-20 May) and finale geitai show (21 May).

Alan Tan, the NParks officer on Ubin, writes that there are usually free boat rides to Ubin from Changi Point Ferry Terminal on these dates from 6.30pm to 10pm. More details will be posted once he receives them.

Do check out the festivities if you have the opportunity as it's a rare island celebration that is hard to come by today.