PENANGITES can once again let their hair down and celebrate the month-long George Town Festival in July.
The festival will be bursting with artistic and cultural activities while celebrating the third anniversary of George Town’s listing as a Unesco World Heritage Site.
Festival director Joe Sidek gave pressmen a preview of what was in store at the festival which was targeting tourists from Hong Kong, Australia and Singapore.
“People who come here to buy luxury homes will also want to know what is happening outside their homes. Through this festival, they can interact and be part of their beloved George Town,” he said.
He said people would not buy property in Penang if there was nothing for them to do.
“We want everyone to benefit from the festival including the local businesses, companies that have invested in Penang and even developers since the festival adds value to their property,” he said.
He urged corporate companies, especially multinational companies, to support the festival as part of their corporate social responsibility.
The celebration is a joint effort by the state government, Penang Municipal Council, George Town World Heritage Incorporated, Penang Global Tourism and various communities.
The activities involve art, opera, films, food, fashion and photography. The main highlight will be the street celebrations on July 7 where local cultural groups and artists are encouraged to showcase their culture.
Twelve families will be selected and their family albums presented as exhibition in their homes to turn it into a living museum where participants can learn the culture and history of the families.
The Opera Master Classes will also be held, where participants from Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand will learn from opera experts.
The event will end with a gala concert featuring young European opera singers.
Art installations will also be seen on city walls with quotes from famous Penangites such as Datuk Jimmy Choo, Zang Toi and Datuk Nicol David on their love for George Town.
A monologue play titled ‘#7’, about the powerful seventh wife of Cheong Fatt Tze will be held at the famed Blue Mansion, with the talents of director Kaylene Tan and actor Tan Kheng Hua (from Phua Chu Kang).
There will also be an exhibition of George Town photographs taken by Henri Cartier-Bresson, portraits of 12 beautiful women and portraits of Malaysians titled ‘The Unity Project’.
The Jawi Peranakan culture will also be shown with an exhibition on Islamic influences in Penang, musical and poetry showcase.
There will also be a publication of a booklet on the gold trail featuring the rich history of famous old jewellers in George Town. Details, call Joe at 016-4173456 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.