AGENDA

Headed to Malaysia this sum­mer? Mark your cal­en­dar for these two ma­jor cultural events that high­light lo­cal traditions while bring­ing a dose of in­ter­na­tional fla­vor.

DestinAsian - - DEPARTMENTS - BY JAMES LOUIE

Two Malaysian cultural fes­ti­vals worth trav­el­ing for this sum­mer.

Rain­for­est Fringe Fes­ti­val

DATES: July 6–15, 2018 PLACE: Kuch­ing, Sarawak

WHAT IS IT? A pre­lude to the Rain­for­est World Mu­sic Fes­ti­val that show­cases Sarawak’s lo­cal tal­ent and ta­pes­try of cul­tures, now in its sec­ond year. DON’T MISS: Home­grown pro­duc­tion Sarawak, An Indige­nous

Jour­ney, fea­tur­ing Kuch­ing­born so­prano Dewi Liana Seri­estha; per­for­mances by Australian duo Elec­tric Fields, ex­per­i­men­tal group At Adau, and jazz singer Pete Kal­lang at the First Peo­ple Party; pho­to­graphic ex­hi­bi­tions like “For­got­ten Beauty”— Tan Wei Kheng’s in­ti­mate por­traits of Sarawakian tribal el­ders—and “Tat­toos” by Na­tional Ge­o­graphic So­ci­ety Fel­low Chris Rainier. OTHER HIGH­LIGHTS: A cre­ative fo­rum on wood and bam­boo with re­gional greats like Filipino de­signer Ken­neth Cobon­pue; The Mar­ket at Bor­neo744, where vis­i­tors can pick up Sarawakian ar­ti­sanal prod­ucts from crafts and an­tiq­ui­ties to mu­sic and fash­ion ( rain­forest­fringe.com).

Ge­orge Town Fes­ti­val

DATES: Au­gust 4– Septem­ber 2, 2018 PLACE: Ge­orge Town, Pe­nang WHAT IS IT? The ninth edi­tion of a hugely suc­cess­ful cultural ex­trav­a­ganza that served as a cat­a­lyst for the out­pour­ing of street art in Pe­nang. DON’T MISS:

Ke­lan­tan, an open­ing show spot­light­ing the Malay tra­di­tional arts of its name­sake state such as the mak yong dance­drama; live pro­duc­tion 2062, which ex­plores hot-but­ton geopo­lit­i­cal is­sues; Isle of Dreams, a mythol­ogy-in­spired the­ater piece by Tai­wanese play­wright Lee Yi-Hsiu that puts a con­tem­po­rary spin on the is­land’s clas­si­cal Nan­guan and Beiguan mu­sic. OTHER HIGH­LIGHTS: The open­ing week­end’s show­case of short films made in South­east Asia; a screen­ing of the An­gelina Jolie–di­rected his­tor­i­cal thriller First They Killed My

Fa­ther; and per­for­mance art in­volv­ing blind­folded ac­tors cov­ered in clay wan­der­ing the city streets ( george­town­fes­ti­val.com).

Isle of Dreams.

Left, from top: Ade­laide-based Abo­rig­i­nal mu­si­cian Zaachari­aha Field­ing, one half of Elec­tric Fields; Lee Yi-Hsiu’s

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