Australia’s The Age says that the city state is loosening its famous social pressure to encourage creativity and grow its local art market:
Singapore’s National Arts Council, which funds the festival, says the local arts scene – as measured by the number of performances and exhibition days – has quadrupled since 1997.
With the government trying to attract international productions and loosening constraints on local works, the city’s mainstream venues increasingly stage works with politically or socially charged messages. Even homosexuality – still illegal in Singapore – is a theme in one of the festival’s local works, HERstory, a tribute to the political activism of Singapore’s women in the 1950s and ’60s.
”Over the last three decades there has been many evolutionary shifts of where the festival is heading, depending on the landscape that Singapore is at,” said Low during the last week of the festival, which ended yesterday.