16th Macao City Fringe Festival presents a feast of creativity


A hairdresser salon turned into a musical? A recreation of an entertainment house at Beco da Felicidade? A funeral at the Ruins of St. Paul’s in the middle of the night? The Macao City Fringe Festival’s shows are always eagerly awaited by all and bring new colours to daily life. The 16th Macao City Fringe Festival, organized by the Cultural Affairs Bureau (IC, from the Portuguese acronym), takes as slogan “A Feast of Creativity, Bon Appétit” and will be held from 13 to 22 January 2017, offering 23 wonderful programmes and a total of 70 performances, going from theatre halls to narrow streets and from forbidden rooms to the outdoors. Adopting the concept “All around the city, our stages, our patrons, our artists”, the Festival offers an arts banquet to the entire city.

Throughout ten consecutive days, “Mobile Kitchen” invites special guests from the cultural field to take the roles of chefs and share their superb cuisine, whether refined or homely, and take the public to savour the flavour of life. In “Antiwords”, produced by Czech Republic Spitfire Company, two actresses drink beer after beer, bragging and arguing with only a few words, offering an explosive mix of nonsensical humour and imagination.

“In Good Hands”, by Irish Catherine Ireton, is a live musical set in a hairdressing salon, offering the audience a wonderful 60-minute experience. “The Magnificent 4” uses the human body as instrument and shares a choreography that makes use of the legs and hand-clapping, creating a unique tempo. In “5 Women”, by contemporary dance company KheN, Dutch choreographer Kevin Pollak joins hands with five dancers in a birthday party set in a café where, through an intense body language, secrets that cannot be shared emerge. “The Smooth Life” is a puppet show set to Arabian music that tells the true story of the life of director Husam Abed in a Palestinian refugee camp.

This edition of the Festival does not forget collaborations with foreign artists. “Funeral for the Living”, directed by Daisuke Sagawa and performed by Japanese company Theatre Moments, awarded with the Macao Literary Prize for Best Script, debates without restrictions issues of life and death. Hong Kong stand-up comedy champion, Vivek Mahbubani, comes to Macao with his friend Chan Lok Tim to cooperate and compete on stage with Macao artists in “Seven Up”, and will certainly make the audience roar with laughter. “The Other Side of the Sacred” is produced by renowned Macao choreographer Candy Kuok in cooperation with Greek Nina Dipla, and will take the audience on a journey that mixes dance, poetry and music. Additionally, in “Weaving Landscape: Night Tide”, the Associação de Arte e Cultura - Comuna de Pedra uses different materials as a medium of creativity, making use of body language and installation art to explore the relationship between body, fabrics and all living things.

This edition of the Festival also features the “Workshop on Environmental Dance Theatre”, the “Workshop for Specific Social Arts Workers” and the “Fringe Reviews”, encouraging the interaction between the audience, art professionals and critics and allowing them to experience the joy of the arts.  In addition, in order to expand the space for development of local art professionals, this edition of the Fringe Festival invited directors of several major art organizations in Asia to come to the city and share their arts festivals and artists-in-residence programmes, thereby introducing to art professional means of participation and offering related support, thus establishing a cooperation network.

Tickets for the Fringe Festival will be on sale at the Macao Ticketing Network from 10am on 11 December (Sunday); telephone and online bookings will be available from 12pm on the same day. 24 hours ticketing hotline: 2855 5555; ticketing website: www.macauticket.com. Holders of ICBC cards including ICBC Credit Card, ICBC Debit Card and ICBC Prepaid Card can enjoy a 10% discount for ticket purchases over MOP200. Online registration for the workshops and “Fringe Reviews” is available at 9am on 11 December (Sunday) on a first-come first-served basis. Online registration website: www.icm.gov.mo/eform/event. For more details on the programme, please visit the Festival’s webpage at www.macaucityfringe.gov.mo. For more information, please call IC through telephone no. 8399 6699, during office hours.

The 16th Macao City Fringe Festival Press Conference was held on 7 December (Wednesday), at 3pm, at the Macau Art Garden, with the presence of the Vice-President of IC, Leong Hio Ming, the Head of IC’s Department of Cultural Events, Ieong Chi Kin, the Head of IC’s Division of Performing Arts, Paula Lei, as well as with representatives of art organizations and art professionals.

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