SIFA 2022

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Festival Commission


Singapore Chinese Orchestra (Singapore) and Tuyang Initiative (Sarawak, Borneo – Malaysia)

Event has ended

  • 20 – 22 May, Fri – Sun, 8pm
  • Pasir Panjang Power Station
  • $58*

    * Limited concessions available for students, NSFs and seniors
    No admission for infants-in-arms. 

    Strobe lighting will be used during this performance

  • 1h 15m, no intermission

  • General

backBack to Archives
Festival Commission


Singapore Chinese Orchestra (Singapore) and Tuyang Initiative (Sarawak, Borneo – Malaysia)

From the Singapore Chinese Orchestra and Tuyang Initiative comes a magnificent performance evoking the sublime rituals of Southeast Asia and its native people, brought to life by an electrifying team of creatives. 

MEPAAN – meaning always in the Kayan language of the indigenous Kayan people of Borneo – is a sonic and visual trip into the wellspring of spiritual and cultural nuance embedded in Southeast Asian native culture.

In a breathtaking performance, stirring strains of indigenous music and vocal tradition from Southeast Asia’s island nations are woven into a fabric of powerful orchestral compositions, evoking grand ritual and ceremony to transport the mind into the pristine rainforests of Southeast Asia.

Helmed by the Singapore Chinese Orchestra in collaboration with Tuyang Initiative – a Sarawak-based creative agency focused on Borneo indigenous cultural heritage – MEPAAN delves into dynamic new dimensions with astounding design interventions.

Local fashion designer Max Tan creates the costumes, weaving the ethereal with the earth connecting bodies in rapt musical and physical expression, with fabric and design that vertically connects the natural with the eternal.

Singaporean Sean Lee’s photography and Sarawak-based indigenous film-maker Harry Frederick capture through their unique individual lens and artistic approaches the anatomical landscape and cultural history embodied in indigenous bodies and lived spaces.

The imagination of set designer Wong Chee Wai and lighting designer Andy Lim collectively evoke the surreal grandeur of the work set within the cavernous halls of Pasir Panjang Power Station, as multimedia artist Brian Gothong Tan takes the entire experience into transcendence with his visual treatment.

Directed by Natalie Hennedige, MEPAAN is set to thrill audiences in an arresting evening of music, beauty and transcendence.

Learn more about MEPAAN

Life Profusion: +Read: Within Us, Always.

Borneo-born Dayak-European musician Alena Murang offers an insight into the traditions and culture of the native people of Borneo.



Education Kit Available for MEPAAN

Click here to view and download resource

This education kit will help to facilitate students' understanding of the performance, the artists and the unique elements that make up this performance. It is designed for deeper engagement and discussion with the SIFA programme. Divided into four sections, it comes with guiding questions, suggested activities and links for further exploration on the subject and themes presented in the show. 

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