|February 12, 2001|
Singapore Taking The Arts To Newer Heights And A Bigger Audience
|Mega Broadway hits, comedy and children's festivals, premiere art auctions, exciting concerts - 2001 is turning out to be chock-a-block with exciting arts and entertainment events. And March and April this year will see a particularly captivating line-up of such performances and shows. |
The Singapore Tourism Board is making sure these events in Singapore get the notice of arts loving audiences everywhere. It is giving its Take Art! marketing campaign an extra shot in the arm this year. While last year's inaugural campaign focussed on generating awareness locally, this year's Take Art! hits the overseas markets with an expanded range of collaterals and invitations to selected overseas media.
All this is part of $5 million the Singapore Tourism Board has set aside to market the arts and events in Singapore. Called the Arts and Events Marketing fund, this includes support for the annual Singapore Arts Festival as well as STB's two arts campaigns, Take Art! and for Art's sake! this year. Collectively, they represent the Board's belief in the attractiveness of the arts as a tourism product.
The STB's Director of Events Marketing, Mr Kevin Leong, said Singapore was quickly establishing itself as a global arts city in the new millennium. The Board, he added, also wanted to ride on the momentum generated by the successful for Art's sake! campaign which marketed events from September to mid October last year.
Mr Leong said: "Following the success of for Art's sake!, we decided to place more emphasis on arts marketing. Take Art! will see more brochures produced and more advertisements placed in high-profile publications, reaching a broader base. We are confident that Take Art! will make tourists in town and potential visitors sit up and take notice of Singapore as a growing arts hub. In particular the events lined up for Take Art! cater well for the family segment. That's why we chose 11-year-old Holly Gravarek as our icon for this campaign."
Holly Gravarek is the Eurasian Singaporean girl whose winning smile appears in the Take Art! brochures, banners and other creatives.
"Over the last few years, the number of arts activities and ticketed performances has been on a steady climb," Mr Asad Shiraz, Senior Director, Tourism Marketing noted. ìEspecially for visitors from the region, which forms the largest market, it's so convenient for them to spend a weekend in Singapore to do a spot of shopping and to catch one of these shows. We're also noticing a growing niche market of arts tourists. These are high-yield visitors who follow trends in arts closely and who are willing to travel to experience a unique arts event. Take Art! will appeal to them."
With its distinct children's component, more popular offerings and a strong film element, Take Art! sets itself apart from for Art's sake! which has a cultural and ethnic focus.
One of the key highlights of this year's Take Art! campaign is its launch at the Life! Theatre Awards. This event, a collaboration with Singapore's leading daily The Straits Times, aims to recognise the efforts of local theatre practitioners. Award categories include Play of the Year, Best Actor/ Actress and Best Production Design. Singapore's Minister for Information and the Arts, Mr Lee Yock Suan will grace the event.
Other highlights of Take Art! include Prudential Children First, Singapore premier theatre festival for the young ones; the three-week long Singapore International Comedy Festival and the Singapore International Film Festival which is still growing from strength to strength in its 14th year. And theatre buffs will be thrilled by the triple bill under DBS Theatre Fantasy - Buddy the Musical, Slavaís Snowshow and Carmen.
For the visual arts buff, must-seeís include the Christie's and Sotheby's bi-annual auctions of Southeast Asian paintings.
Lovers of music and dance will be captivated by the performances from the Rambert Dance Theatre, Britainís flagship contemporary dance company as well as CHIJMES' Annual Latin Festival, which promises to transport you to the sizzling, music-filled streets of Latin America.
Arts groups and events organisers are looking forward to a greater awareness of their performances and a renewed buzz about the arts with their collaboration with STB.
Ms Ruby Lim-Yang, Co-founder and Director of ACT3, the theatre group behind Prudential Children First said: "Being under the Take Art! banner immediately profiles the children's festival as a national event. This is important to the status of work done for children in the arts. A collective marketing and promotions effort sustains momentum, draws greater public attention, and maximizes limited resources. This can only be a good thing for the state of the arts!"
Dr Robert Liew, Director, Arts Management Association and Presenter of the Singapore International Comedy Festival commented: "We've come a long way since the first Comedy Fest four years ago but as anyone in the arts events business will know, marketing can be a prohibitively expensive component. That's why Take Art! is an ideal marketing platform to bring Southeast Asia's only Comedy Fest to a much larger audience."