Deepen cultural connections this new year as Singapore marks Singapore Day at Expo 2020 Dubai with a myriad of events and festivities.
From now till Singapore Day on 22 January 2022, visitors to Expo 2020 and the Singapore Pavilion are invited to experience the nation’s multicultural fabric and journey toward being a liveable city of the future.
Presented by the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Singapore, in partnership with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Singapore and the Singapore Tourism Board, the programmes at the Pavilion aim to bring visitors from all walks of life together through an experience of Singapore’s food, nature and art.
Mr. Larry Ng, Commissioner-General of the Singapore Pavilion, said: “Inclusivity and multiculturalism are key enablers of Singapore’s ability to nurture new ideas to create a liveable and sustainable city. We hope that our rich and diverse cultural programmes will help to bring Expo visitors and partners even closer to Singapore and our global perspective as they join us in our celebration of the Singapore spirit and bond with us over universal themes like food and art.”
Singapore to take the stage at Al Wasl Plaza at the Expo grounds
On the morning of 22 January, a Singapore Day ceremony will be held at Al Wasl Plaza located at the heart of Expo 2020 Dubai. The ceremony will be attended by Singapore’s Senior Minister and Coordinating Minister for National Security Mr. Teo Chee Hean.
Senior Minister Teo will present to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) a new Dendrobium orchid hybrid named in honour of Expo 2020 Dubai. The unveiling of this unique orchid commemorates Singapore’s close and multi-faceted relations with the UAE and recognises Expo 2020’s important role in bringing countries and
partners together to co-create solutions to global challenges.
The orchid will be displayed at the Pavilion’s Flower Cone for a limited time, together with two other distinguished orchid hybrids: the beautiful free-flowering Dendrobium Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak orchid hybrid, named after Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, UAE Mother of the Nation, in 2017; and the vigorous and robust Aranda Lee Kuan Yew, named in honour of the late Mr. Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore’s first Prime Minister and the architect behind Singapore’s transformation into a tropical Garden City.
Guests attending the ceremony will also be treated to a spirited dance performance by three dance soloists,showcasing Singapore’s multi-ethnic and multi-cultural identity. The dancers, trained in classical Chinese, Indian and Malay dance forms, will express their living experiences through the universal language of movement art, telling their stories of comfort and belonging, stability and opportunities found in Singapore, their home.
The Singapore Day ceremony can also be viewed via a livestream on the Expo 2020 website at https://virtualexpodubai.com/
A delightful Singaporean food showcase
At the Pavilion, visitors can treat themselves to Singaporean culinary delights, reminiscent of the nation’s UNESCO-recognised hawker culture which brings people from all walks of life together for a gastronomic experience.
As a melting pot of ethnic cultures, Singapore is known for its iconic cross-cultural dishes, and the city’s culinary talents have in recent years put a fresh spin on such street fare through a new category of food, known as Modern-Singaporean (abbreviated as Mod-Sin) cuisine.
Special guest Mr. Haikal Johari, Executive Chef of Alma by Juan Amador, one of Singapore’s Michelin-star restaurants, will be preparing bite-sized samples from a special Mod-Sin menu for Stories of Taste & Passion.
Chef Haikal (right), who continued pursuing his culinary dreams despite a motorcycle accident that left him paralysed from the neck down, is an embodiment of the Singapore spirit of resilience. As a chef who constantly innovates to elevate the quality of his food, he will be featuring Singapore-grown produce on his menu.
This is a nod to the land-scarce country’s push towards food sustainability through innovative urban solutions like vertical and rooftop farms. From 5.30pm to 6.30pm Gulf Standard Time (GST) on 22 January, visitors to the Pavilion will be able to join him, and Dubai-based TV personality and first runner-up of Top Chef Arabia Chef Hala Ayash in this special culinary experience, while also learning of his passion story.
Visitors to the Pavilion will also be able to savour three special local recipes that have been carefully curated by Chef Haikal. These Singapore-inspired recipes are also available as take-home recipe kits produced by UAE gourmet recipe kit brand Naksha Collections, and may be purchased at major supermarkets in the UAE from 24 January.
Connecting Singapore to the world
Collaborating with partners and experts from Singapore and the world, the Pavilion will connect people and like-minded communities through culture in the lead-up to Singapore Day.
Apart from sampling local culinary treats on-site, visitors will be able to encounter global perspectives and immerse themselves in a series of digital art experiences and insightful conversations over sustainability and tourism.
The Pavilion will continue to provide a platform for exchanges and collaborative ideation through its panel discussions. On 22 January, in conjunction with Singapore Day, experts from across the globe will discuss how new trends in urban design and technology are transforming traveller experiences in a post-lockdown world in Reimagined Cities: Can cities leverage urban design and technology to attract the next generation traveller?
To be held from 3pm to 5pm GST at the Terra Auditorium, participants1 can expect to hear from a diverse line-up of panellists, including:
* Dr. Barkathunnisha, Founder of Elevated Consultancy & Training and Co-Founder of World Women Tourism;
* Mr. Michael Magill, Managing Director at RSP Middle East & North Africa;
* Mr. Xavier Anglada, Managing Director at Accenture – Innovation, Digital Transformation, Energy Transition; and
* Ms. Sarah Khan, Editor-in-Chief at Conde Nast Traveler Middle East (as moderator)
More information on Stories of Taste & Passion and Reimagined Cities, including registration details, can be found in the annex and at https://go.gov.sg/
Asia’s pinnacle visual arts season, Singapore Art Week (SAW) 2022 also arrives at the Pavilion with its theme “Art Takes Over”.
In a unique collaboration, SAW 2022 will take over the screens of the Sky Market to offer audiences an exclusive taster into the Singapore visual arts ecosystem.
From now until 30 January, art lovers can discover original arts series like Pretty Exciting Stuff and digital artworks featured as part of SAW like Not For Sale, Happy House, and Proximities.
More details on the works are available at https://www.artweek.sg/saw-in-
On 21 January, there will be a special edition of the monthly Singapore Film Nights, featuring The Songs We Sang, the debut documentary by Singapore filmmaker Eva Tang, a vivid and in-depth look into the journey of Xinyao (literally “songs composed by Singapore Youths” in Mandarin) since its birth.
Steeped in history and authenticity, this documentary captures a little-known chapter of Singapore’s history that became a significant part of a nation’s collective cultural heritage.
National flag carrier Singapore Airlines has also lined up a series of activities for visitors on 22 and 23 January, including a children’s colouring competition, a photo contest, traditional games, where prizes – including a round-trip ticket to Singapore – are up for grabs.
Throughout the day, there will also be giveaways for visitors that includes traditional drinks by local heritage beverage brand Yeo’s, and snacks by Irvins which is known for its salted-egg flavoured treats.
Mr. Ng said: “Singapore Day is a vibrant showcase of the nation’s ingenuity and creativity through innovations in food and art, and we are excited to mark the turn of the new year with this slate of eclectic programmes that gives visitors a glimpse of our unique Singapore culture. As Singapore remains open and
connected to the world, we look forward to welcoming more visitors to our Pavilion and engaging them with new perspectives as we collectively reflect on what makes an endearing and liveable city of the future.”
Join the conversation on the Singapore Pavilion via Facebook, Instagram (@expo2020singapore) and Twitter (@expo2020sg), and hashtags #Expo2020SG and #NatureNurtureFuture.
For more details on the Singapore Pavilion and Expo 2020 Dubai, please visit www.singapore2020expo.gov.sg/ and www.expo2020dubai.com respectively.
Singapore Day programme highlights
Singapore Day Ceremony
22 January 2022 | 10 – 11am GST
Get excited for the Singapore Day ceremony held at the breath-taking Al Wasl Plaza on 22 January, as the nation unveils a new Dendrobium orchid hybrid named in honour of Expo 2020 Dubai. Audiences will be treated to a dance performance that showcases the nation’s multi-ethnic and multi-cultural identity, featuring Chinese, Indian and Malay dance forms that express their life in Singapore.
The ceremony can be viewed via a livestream on the Expo website at https://virtualexpodubai.com/
Stories of Taste & Passion
22 January 2022 | 5:30 – 6:30 pm GST
As a multi-racial country and global city, Singapore’s dining scene is steeped in both heritage and tradition, as well as a voracious appetite for innovative and refreshing experiences, shaped by our locals’ and chefs’ deep obsession with food. In recent years, Singapore’s obsession with food has pushed the boundaries with innovation and experimentation, where focus has shifted to developing locally grown produce to feed our palettes.
On Singapore Day, visitors can embark on a uniquely Singaporean culinary experience and discover the island’s UNESCO-recognised hawker culture through their taste buds. Visitors can feast on savoury Singaporean delights prepared by Chef Haikal Johari, Executive Chef of Michelin one-star restaurant Alma by Juan Amador. Made from sustainable produce, there are only a hundred samples available, so visitors are encouraged to come early to chope (reserve) their portion.
Visitors can taste a free sample from three Singapore–inspired gourmet recipe kits from Dubai-based company Naksha Collections, which features local delights made with sustainable ingredients.
Reimagined Cities: Can cities leverage urban design and technology to attract the next generation traveller?
22 January 2022 | 3 – 5pm GST
Art, food, architecture, nature reserves, cultural enclaves. For as long as people have been visiting cities, they have wanted these experiences to be waiting for them in their dream destinations. Next-generation travellers increasingly want to visit cities that are clean, green and serene. They want to travel well and travel good, knowing that they will be a partner in helping rather than harming the planet.
Now that borders are reopening and many of us are dreaming up travel plans, this question is relevant and pressing.
How can cities respond to these shifting travel trends and new consumer needs with urban design and technology? Can sustainable, green architecture become attractions in their own right? Do visitors care most about sustainable transport or are they more focused on the food they’re eating and the energy consumed by hotels? What are the most exciting ways that cities are using to address these issues? And how can cities best communicate to next-generation travellers that their concerns have been and will continue to be met?
Organised by the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) and taking place at Expo 2020 Dubai, this event will bring together top speakers from across the world to discuss innovations and new trends in urban design and technology that are transforming traveller experiences in a post-lockdown world. The seminar is a part of STB’s SingapoReimagine Global Conversations, a forum series that convenes industry game-changers on the global stage to share their perspectives, exchange ideas and trigger conversations and collaborations.
For more information, please visit https://www.stb.gov.sg/
Singapore Art Week
Until 23 January 2022
As Singapore’s signature visual arts season, Singapore Art Week (SAW) represents the unity and pride of a diverse and vibrant arts community. In its 10th edition, SAW 2022 will be a celebration of the Singapore visual arts in its decade of growth – in the practices of Singapore artists, in the formats of presentation and in the spaces these will inhabit.
At the Singapore Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai, SAW will present a series of digital experiences that features the best of Singapore’s arts. Audiences all over the world can access and discover the exciting art in Singapore’s arts and cultural institutions and beyond, or engage in enriching discussions, talks, public art walks and tours.
For more information, please visit www.artweek.sg/saw-in-dubai
Singapore Film Nights
21 January 2022 | 7.00 – 9.30pm GST
In this month’s iteration of Singapore Film Nights, discover Singapore through the lens of local filmmakers with the films In Tune and The Songs We Sang at the Arena @ Sky Market.