Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Ballet Under The Stars (B.U.T.S.)

25th July 2008, Friday
Ballet Under The Stars
Organised by the Singapore Dance Theatre (20th Anniversary)

This year's performance was more entertaining than last year's, and with good food, company and weather, I enjoyed myself tremendously.

After the performance, we went to the Peranakan Museum and the Singapore Arts Museum (which was open until 2am for that night) for the Night Festival. It was an eye-opener.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Field Trip Reflection

The people I went for Water Fools with :)

1. Introduction
Water fools, that was held on 23rd to 25th May at Boat Quay, set the atmosphere right for the opening celebrations of the Singapore Arts Festival. This performance that was originated from France had people gathered all along the banks of the Singapore River, watching the spectacular performance. On 24th May, I reached Boat Quay half an hour before the performance, and was shocked by the number of people that were waiting for the 45-minute performance. The enjoyable and stimulating event awed me with the props they had on the set, background music and firework displays.

2. The Organiser
The National Arts Council of Singapore is the organiser of the Singapore Arts Festival, and its mission is to nurture the arts and make it an integral part of people’s lives in Singapore, as they make it accessible for the people, and allow opportunities for artistic talents to flourish.

With vision of developing Singapore into a distinctive global city for the arts, they nurture, develop and advocate the importance of art by organising events to engage different sectors of the population, and to evoke interest in people to participate in the arts.

3. Role of Events
The roles of the events that the NAC organised during the period of the Arts Festival is tourist attraction and place marketing.

As the events will be held over a period of a month, tourists that come to Singapore for the events will increase their length of stay, thus, boosting the country’s economy. This way, it also enhances global connectivity, which helps them to realise their vision.

Being entertained, in the art forms, in places that are popular places of attraction, helps create positive images of Singapore to the locals, as well as, to the visitors.

4. Its Stakeholders
With an event as large as the National Arts Festival, it is no wonder there are so many sponsors and partners.

The sponsors and partners of the event contribute to the event by providing monetary support or value-in-kind. There are also the employees, volunteers and performers as the stakeholders. To maintain order at the event, security reinforcement by the police is necessary, in case of emergency. A lot of time and effort are also put in by the stakeholders to make the event a success.

Other stakeholders are the art schools in Singapore, like the Laselle College of the Arts and the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts, as they get knowledge from the famous and popular performances and facilitate that into their learning.

5. Target Market
The large array of performances that are organised by the National Arts Council caters to people from young to the elderly. The NAC believes that ‘arts appreciation is best instilled at a young age’, thus, there are performances that cater to them, like Water Fools, where they can fascinate over the car moving on the water.

There are special concessions for the full-time students, NSFs, as well as senior citizens, to encourage them to go for the performances. As some events are held in the “heartlands”, people living in those areas are also the target audiences. The locals are not the only target audiences – tourists are also encouraged to go for the events.

NAC also has scholarships and bursaries for people with artistic talents. There is free admission for events like the Hydro Sapiens, not restricting those with financial difficulties from attending the events.

6. Marketing Strategies
In my opinion, the marketing strategies, consisting of the eight ‘P’s (product, price, place, promotions, people, packaging, partnership, and programming) was done pretty well.

Product: The products of the event are the performances that were held throughout the period of the Arts Festival.

Price: The prices for the performances varied, catering to the different income groups. While there were free performances like the opening and closing ceremonies of the Arts Festival, there were also performances that cost more than a hundred dollars. Performances that has won awards, like The Lord of the Rings Symphony: Six Movements for Orchestra, costs a lot more than works by up and coming artists. There are also promotions for the “early-birds” and people who bought tickets in bulk, making the tickets more worth the money.

Place: Having many of their events central of Singapore ensures that there will be people from all over Singapore, going down for the events. It makes it accessible for the people to get there. For events that are held in places that are not as accessible, like the “heartlands”, the provision of transport makes up for it.

People can also purchase their tickets with much ease, as they can do it through the internet, telephone, as well as SISTIC outlets, which are located across the country, in shopping malls. There are also outlets overseas, so foreigners can get their tickets before coming to Singapore.

For the event I attended, I felt that the place was well located and decorated. Passer-bys would stop by to watch the performance because of the lighting, sounds and the number of people at that location. Even though there were many people at Boat Quay for the performance, there was order when the performance ended and the crowd started to disperse. There were clear signs locating the toilets too.

Promotions: I witnessed a lot of publicity going on before and during the period of the Arts Festival – from banners at bus interchanges, to advertisements on the radio and internet. People around me were talking about the Arts Festival too, being free advertisement for the event.

People: Personally, I did not have much encounter with the staff and volunteers for the Water Fools. However, I saw volunteers managing the crowd and taking down feedback from the people who watched the performance. I thought it was a good idea getting feedback from people immediately after the event, and having someone to record it personally, instead of distributing the forms to the mass.

Packaging: I thought they packaged their offers very nicely, making it affordable and it also encourages people to attend the performances in large groups, to be entitled to the discounts.

Partnership: I did not take note of the partners’ logos at the performance venue of the Water Fools. It might not be prominent enough for people around to take note of. I suppose it could have been done better.

Programming: Looking at the calendar of events, I feel that the programmes were evenly spread out through the month. It was a good job, so there is little possibility of performance clashes, if a person is interested in both performances.

7. Rating the Event
I was pleasantly shocked by the turnout of the Water Fools. I only planned to reach the venue 30 minutes beforehand as I did not think that there would be so many people there! I did not realise that there were so many people, local as well as foreigners, who were aware of the performance.

I guess this would be a sign that their publicity of the event paid off. They were able to create interest in people, like myself, who did not know what it was about. The description of the various events, and the pictures provided on the website were able to convince me to attend the events.

I asked a volunteer of the event‘s contingency plans. She was able to tell me, showing that she was well-informed. The event would be cancelled if there was thunderstorm, otherwise, it would go on.

8. Potential of the Organiser
I was impressed with the performance of the Water Fools, as well as the planning of the organiser. Although there might be years where the Arts Festival did not make profits, I am certain that with this standard of planning and publicity, people in Singapore will slowly come to appreciate art. More tourists will also be attracted to the events organised by the NAC in time to come.

The National Arts Council will then be able to achieve their goals of nurturing and developing the arts, and advocating the importance of art.

I would definitely go for more performances and events organised by the NAC.

9. Tourism Mission
The National Arts Council has a similar mission to that of the tourism mission of Singapore - that is to connect to the world on the global scale and attract them to Singapore. With more international performances coming down to Singapore to perform, it not only opens Singaporeans up to Singapore being an Arts Hub, it also attracts more visitors, who are fans of the performers.

That way, it fulfills both the National Arts Council and the Singapore Tourism Board's missions.


o http://www.ilotopie.com/gb/company/2005_fous_bassin.htm
o http://www.singaporeartsfest.com/fest_spec.asp
o http://www.nac.gov.sg
o http://www.singaporeartsfest.com/sponsors.asp
o http://www.sistic.com.sg/portal/dt?dt.isPortletRequest=true&dt.action=process&dt.provider=PortletWindowProcessChannel&dt.windowProvider.targetPortletChannel=JSPTabContainer/sWhereToBuyTickets/Agent&dt.containerName=JSPTabContainer/sWhereToBuyTickets&dt.windowProvider.currentChannelMode=VIEW&dt.window.portletAction=RENDER

Pictures I took at the event I attended:
A banner hung near the venue of the performance
An innovative advertisement - a sticker pasted on a cube-shaped stone stool
The performance

Bicycle on the water
Firework displays

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

My events management blog!! WOW!!!

woo~ I love events management!!