What’s That Noise?

Published on 16 August 2016

Young artists strut their stuff at the Noise Singapore 2016 Festival


It’s that time of the year again: young Singaporean artists, after undergoing a mentorship programme, showcase their creations at the annual Noise Singapore Festival.


Creative and full of inspiration, many young artists have no clue about what to do with all that raw talent. The National Arts Council brought Noise Singapore onto the scene 11 years ago to provide what is, today, the biggest youth arts platform.


Paired with a mentor in their chosen field, each participant in the programme gets the chance to develop their art and collaborate with leading practitioners in music, art & design, photography & moving images. More than 6,000 participants have gone through the programme over more than a decade, including local luminaries like Shigga Shay and Inch Chua. The latter is currently a Noise mentor.

The two flagship mentorship programmes are the Noise Art Mentorship and Noise Music Mentorship (NMM), each lasting six months, up from four months previously. This year, industry partners lend their expertise to nurture the Noise participants. These industry players include non-profit visual arts centre Objectifs; popular art walkabout OH! Open House; and music institute Thunder Rock School.


“By encouraging open-minded and rigorous dialogue across art forms, we believe we can nurture these artists to expand the creative possibilities of their practices,” says Berny Tan, assistant curator of OH! Open House.

Veteran music producer Leonard Soosay, who is co-founder of Thunder Rock School, is one of the mentors for NMM 2016. “Having observed Noise Singapore since its inception, I have seen first-hand many eager, young and talented people come through the door, many of whom have gone on to become meaningful contributors and household names in the Singapore music scene.”

Every year, budding artists between 17 and 35 years of age from all walks of life vie for a place in the programme to level up their skills. From students to office workers to sales assistants, what draws these diverse individuals to Noise is their hunger and passion for artistic expression at a higher level. An outstanding few will also bag the Noise Singapore Award, which comes with a grant of up to S$5,000 to encourage their next creative project.



Collaboration is also one of the big draws of Noise. Many mentees are thrilled by the chance to work with established professionals and receive practical advice first-hand. Moreover, the programme gives the artists a chance to get acquainted with their peers and explore different styles. “I really cherish connecting with other musicians and getting to create works with them,” says theatre actress and Noise alumni Ethel Yap.


The highlight of the programme is the yearly Noise Singapore Festival, which brings the works of these budding talents to the public. This year, the festival features a series of music performances and exhibitions taking place from now till 30 September at the Esplanade and Capitol Piazza. Catch the best of our artists’ offerings, which come fresh, passion-fuelled and straight from the heart.


Highlights of the Noise Singapore Festival.


‘Uncharted’ is the theme of the flagship exhibition, aptly reflecting the path of each new artist charting their first steps into new territory. This curated collection showcases hundreds of original artworks and commissioned installations selected by the Noise Expert Panel. Moreover, there will be live music performances on 13 and 20 August at 3pm, 4pm and 5pm.

WHEN Till 31 August, 10.30am-10.30pm

WHERE Capitol Piazza Outdoor Plaza & #01-23


The journey does not end upon completion of the programme. Having kickstarted their craft with Noise, alumni artists have gone on to continue developing their art. Check out their new commissioned works as they share the results of their creative progression.

WHEN Till 31 August, 11am-11pm

WHERE Festival Corner at the Esplanade Concourse

UPBEAT MOOD Take in performances by Noise alumni musicians (from top) Stopgap, Take Two and enec.e at the Festival Concert.


Music lovers will be treated to performances by Noise Singapore alumni musicians. The gigs will feature a mix of old and new songs by an exciting line-up of music talents, including established names like Stopgap, Take Two and enec.e. In addition, three emerging Australian acts will also join in to lend an international flavour to the concert.

WHEN 26-28 August, various evening timings

WHERE Esplanade Outdoor Theatre & Concourse


What is a Singapore festival without the signature retail flair? Browse the artist market’s array of art, crafts, accessories and more, lovingly created by 12 local artists. Support local arts and take home a one-of-a-kind handcrafted creation.

WHEN 27-28 August, 5pm-10pm

WHERE Esplanade Concourse


Get hands-on and involved in this creative space! As the name suggests, (co)Lab features collaborations with partners like Converse, EZ-Link and Snupped for a series of must-try activities. A variety of workshops and other unique events will keep participants elbow-deep in artsy fun.

WHEN Till 30 September, 10.30am-10.30pm

WHERE Capitol Piazza #01-23

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