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Gov’t considers banning Singapore arts festival

Gov’t considers banning Singapore arts festival

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The Singapore Arts Festival will be put on hold next year and might return in 2014 after a review, the National Arts Council (NAC) said today.

The review will chart the festival’s future direction, and “ensure greater alignment to the objectives presented in the Arts and Culture Strategic Review (ACSR), which was published earlier this year”, the council said in a statement.

Insider sources revealed to New Nation that the main cause of concern to the council, was the fact that Singaporeans are getting too artistic for the government’s good. This tension between artistic license and the license to live in Singapore was recently epitomised when a 25 year-old woman nicknamed “sticker lady” was nabbed for spray painting a road.

Though Sticker Lady has reportedly been released following about 20 hours in police lock-up, her laptop and mobile phone have been seized as a precaution in case she designs further damage on Singapore’s infrastructure. Pending further investigations, she is likely to be charged with vandalism.

“It’s not about the road,” said Sun Zhi, a member of the working committee formed to discuss a new working model for the festival.

“It’s the fact that it was vandalism. Same as loansharks. If we bend the law to allow funny vandalism, that will lead us down the slippery slope to condone all vandalism — in front of the Ministry of National Development some more. That only sends a message to our forefathers and our grandfathers that their descendants are not able to protect their roads for them.”

Indeed, the attendance at the Singapore Arts Festival this year shows a worrying trend of Singaporeans being corrupted by works the promote non-Asian values. While ticket sales were more than 70% sold, hows like Language of their Own, LEAR DREAMING, The Best Sex I’ve Ever Had, Advanced Studies in… (Ten Lessons for Life) and Parallel Cities – Roof were completely sold out.

Cultural observers are worried that this could be the start of the condoning of sexual deviance, such as those with straw fetishes.

“Artists are all gay and if the arts festival continues this way, there will be more people having sex with straws stuck up their noses and this will be disastrous for our birth rate,” said Chao Ah Kwa, a law professor from the National University of Singapore.

Yet other experts insist that artistic license should be granted if it was for commercial purposes, such as advertisements for legal moneylenders.

“As a poor man’s bank and micro-loan facility, we are grateful that the government has given us this public space for our marketing campaign,” said Miss Tan, the marketing director of licensed money-lender Ghim Ah Long.

Indeed, Singapore’s pro-business stance and continued bid to be the financial hub of Asia has not gelled well with its simultaneous bid to be a pioneer in the arts — a field dominated by hobos, criminals and people with too much time on their hands.

“Is this a Singapore that you want to see? What’s your solution to the problem? Will you be responsible for your country’s future? Do you want to see more dishonesty and criminality in parliament? Is this your idea of a first world country?” replied Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean in a seminar organised for junior college students. He was asked about his thoughts on toilet facilities during the Singapore arts festival.