Pangkor Island Festival 2023 (邦咯海島節)

I was awestruck by the charms of the rustic traditional fishing village and natural greeneries during my trip to Pangkor Island. Yes, Pangkor Island, is an island on the west coast of Malaysia, in the state of Perak. This island is not as well known as Penang Island, and thus is not so touristy. But the Malaysian government has given her due credit by declaring Pangkor Island a duty-free island on 1 January 2020, so that more locals can go over to buy chocolates, perfumes, bags, clothing accessories, and batik. (source: Pangkor Island Tourism)

On 17 August 2023, I was grateful to be invited to the launch of Pangkor Island Festival 2023. 
Pangkor Island Festival is a unique island-based festival where community, culture, and arts come into play. Pangkor Island Festival aspires to integrate community, culture, history, and folklore which will add a new dimension to the livelihood of Pangkorians. Artists are invited to the island so that interaction with local communities can be fostered and also to highlight the local delicacies as well as scenic and touristic attractions. This Pangkor Island Festival, 28 - 30 Septemper 2023, is organized by Oriental Art and Cultural Center, Kuala Lumpur, since 2013. 

A. K. Tan, Chairman of Eiken Foundation

The Guiding Theme, "Togetherness", hopes Pangkor Island Festival 2023 can casts an introspective glance over the last ten years of remarkable events, seminars, exhibitions, performances, and cultural
interactions. Significantly, this year witnesses the return of past island alliance members for
a post-pandemic reunion. On the backdrop of this 10th-anniversary milestone, we remain
steadfast in our objectives:
 Bolster Pangkor Island's tourism landscape
 Employ cultural arts as a bridge uniting diverse communities and their cultural
tapestries across the island
 Offer an avant-garde platform for musicians and artists to showcase their talents
 Provide local island residents with a platform for learning through performances,
lectures, and workshops
 Promote cultural exchange and preservation across island cultures

Eric Ch'ng, Festival Director

Erik Kuong, Festival Curator

Cultural Artistry in Everyday Living
While cultural arts are often seen as intricate subjects, they inherently weave through our
daily lives. Our daily endeavors can be viewed as personal expressions of "performance art."
Over the span of these three days, attendees can anticipate an eclectic line-up of activities
and experiences that pay homage to cross-islands’ cultural heritage, dynamic art interactions,
and more. 

Highlights include:
*Islands Music and Jazz Performances:
Immerse yourself in the musical elements presented by instruments from different islands
and dances that showcase the cultural nuances of each island, along with Malaysia's jazz

* Installation and Visual Art Exhibitions:
Explore intriguing perspectives brought to interpreting Pangkor Island through the
creations of artists, including photography, ink paintings, documentation of traditional
trades, films, and more.
*Island Experiences and Art Workshops:
Engage in island experience workshops that encompass various aspects of Pangkor
Island, including fishing, marine products, natural landscapes, and more, offering a
comprehensive understanding of the island. 
Participate in art workshops that allow you to explore traditional heritage skills, spiritual painting, indigenous dances, eco-friendly percussion, and more, such as Mobile Kitchen:
Let chefs from different islands guide you in preparing their signature dishes, while
sharing life stories from their respective islands. Art Bazaar:
Discover and support local artisans and craftspeople through a showcase of unique
Confluence of Island Cultures
Beyond spotlighting local artists, culinary delights, and cultural crossroads, this year's festival
elevates the stage with exhilarating performances and exhibitions from former island alliance
members. Participating islands include:
- Hainan Island
- Bali Island
- Okinawa Island
- Taiwan
- Macau
- Mokpo (South Korea)
- Others: France

All these electrifying events will unfold against the picturesque backdrop of Sungai Pinang
Kecil, offers a visually arresting setting for cultural exploration and community engagement.
Pangkor Island Festival 2023 promises an immersive experience that harmoniously blends
culture, art, and camaraderie. Participants can eagerly anticipate vibrant performances,
engaging exhibitions, enlightening workshops, and activities that pay tribute to vibrant
heritage across the islands.

 The Artist that will be performing are:
WVC Jazz (Malaysia), Junji Delfino (Malaysia)
Junji Delfino is a name deeply etched in Malaysian jazz, Winnie HO (Malaysia), Kirana Kay (Malaysia)
Kirana Kay is a well-regarded vocalist, Orang Orang Drum Theatre (Malaysia), Avartana (Penang,Malaysia)

"Avartana” is an innovative and soul-stirring Indian classical fusion band, Wak Long Music & Art Centre (Malaysia), 
Kanang Set- Persatuan Kebudayaan dan Kesenian Orang Asal Perak (Malaysia), Kanang Set is one of the performance groups of Persatuan Kebudayaan dan Kesenian Orang
Asal Perak. The group members are not only Semai people, but also other ethnic groups.
Music and art lovers of all ethnic groups are welcome to join them.
"Kanang set (frog elbow)", which is a repeating triangular symbol, symbolizes the spirit and
balance between the natural world and life. The triangle is also a symbol of the highest power,
"nyenang" (God Supreme), who created and gave life to the universe.
Kanang set /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\ symbol means:
 Aboriginal strongest symbol (Frog Elbow)
 Limestone Mountains of Kinta Valley, Perak
 A heartbeat chart of Aboriginal music alive, Macau Ieng Chi Dance Association (Macau, China), GETDOL Theatre Troupe (Mokpo, South Korea), Siva9 Band (Hualian, Taiwan)
Lies in the east of Taiwan is Hualien, Jun Sakima(Okinawa, Japan), Kita Art Community (Bali, Indonesia), The Sound of Wuzishan Li Ethnic Bamboo and Wooden Instrument Orchestra of Hainan
China (Hainan, China), Foo Kok Kin (Malaysia)
A senior professional photographer in Malaysia, Dick Chua (Malaysia)
Graduated from Vancouver Film School, Dick Chua is a filmmaker whose artistic strength, Abdul Shakir-Grasshopper (Malaysia)
Abdul Shakir (also known as ‘Grasshopper’) is a multidisciplinary multimedia digital artist, Mahen Bala (Malaysia)
Mahen Bala is a Malaysian documentarian and visual artist who has worked on documenting
Malaysian culture and history for more than a decade.

Farid Sax

Pangkor Island Festival 2023 Program Highlights:
- Opening Jazz Concert: Three's A Company (Malaysia)
- Three’s A Company brings together three of Malaysia’s greatest jazz vocalists.
Orang Orang Drum Theatre

- Ice Factory Music Series: Laguku by Orang Orang Drum Theatre (Malaysia)
- Ice Factory Music Series: Sound of “Li Ethnic” Bamboo and Wood Instrument Orchestra
(Wuzhishan, Hainan, China), 
- Ice Factory Music Series: Sekar Jagat Dance by Kita Art Community (Bali, Indonesia)  -

Performance:Immersive Site-Specific Dance Theatre 《Home · Sailing Home (Macao), Jazz Sharing Session: Let's Get Groovy! (Malaysia), Conference: Chat about Culture-Generated Platform for Tourism – ChatCGPT, 

Island Experience: All about Anchovies (Malaysia)
Anchovy fishing is one of the traditional industries in Pangkor Island. Through this workshop,
participants can learn all about the anchovies, including the history, the anchovy boat, and
the processes of catching, cooking and drying anchovy. Island Experience: Muddy Trail (Malaysia),

Workshops: Art Workshop:Genesis Art Workshop by Shoko Uchiya (Japan), Workshop: Semai Cultural Experience by Kanang Set (Malaysia)

Exhibitions; Exhibition:Tan Choo Harn "Crossed Paths, Shared Memories" (Malaysia), Exhibition: Impression of Pangkor - Chinese Ink Painting Exhibition by Kerk Won Hoo, Exhibition:The Reconciliation by S. Zong (France), Exhibition:Unspeakable Stories Told by Flowers - Exhibiton by Shoko Uchiya (Japan), Exhibition:Seamless Zone: Realm of My Being by Licht (Japan), Exhibition:6 Documentary on Pangkor Fishing Trades by School of Architecture and Built
Environment, UCSI University (Japan), Exhibition:Pangkor's Whispering Light - Installation Art by Takuji Kamio (Japan)

All are cordially invited to join in celebrating Pangkor Island Festival 2023, (邦咯海島節), a convergence of culture, artistry, and community bound by the theme of "Togetherness.". 

For tickets and more details, please check out:

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  1. Festivals in Pangkor is really interesting. I love them, and I think you will like geometry dash lite which is a music and rhythm game