ASEAN youth to add artistic touch to Night Fest

Laotian participants performing at the opening ceremony of the 2013 ASEAN Youth Camp which Singapore is hosting.

SINGAPORE - The Singapore Night Festival will be infused with an extra touch of South-east Asian culture this weekend, when delegates from the ASEAN Youth Camp showcase their artistic talent.

Visitors will be able to enjoy a painting and photography exhibition at the National Museum of Singapore and be entertained by a traditional music and dance performance at Plaza Singapura.

The showcases will be put on by about 40 young people from the 10 ASEAN states.

They follow a weeklong camp for the artists and performers, which ends on Sunday.

"This is an excellent chance to forge something exciting and new by bringing together our diverse traditions and artistic knowledge," said Acting Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Lawrence Wong.

Singaporean experts in photography, painting and traditional dance and music will hold workshops for the delegates.

"Putting different cultural dances into one performance is a challenge, but a key ingredient is the mutual respect and understanding for the different cultures and techniques," said traditional dance expert Osman Abdul Hamid, 51.

The biennial festival - which is being hosted by Singapore for the first and last time - is in its final installation after being held in various ASEAN countries since 1998.

It is organised by the National Heritage Board, the National Arts Council and the People's Association.

The youth camp delegates will share their history and culture and be immersed in Singapore's multicultural heritage.

Visual artist Joseph Gabriel, 24, who is from the Philippines, said: "I'm excited to find out more about Singapore, such as how Singaporeans take pride in their culture despite the advancements of their city."

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