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Country Highlights - ASEAN

Singapore’s Involvement as an ASEAN Member State

Arts and culture have the power to bridge diverse communities and deepen friendships among nations and remain an important way to strengthen regional cooperation among ASEAN Member States. In 2018, the National Arts Council (NAC) organised One Voice: The Best of ASEAN Performing Arts concert in support of Singapore’s ASEAN Chairmanship year. Following which, Singapore chaired the 55th ASEAN Committee of Culture and Information (ASEAN-COCI) meeting in 2020 where we celebrated this spirit of unity in diversity, and encouraged appreciation and respect for diverse ASEAN cultures.

A Season to Harvest was commissioned for the 55th meeting to celebrate the unity and resilience of ASEAN communities through the universal motifs of rice and harvest. Performed in two parts, Celebration and Reflection, this music video demonstrates that the COVID-19 crisis has allowed for a new appreciation of the rhythmic patterns of our daily lives, and how that inspires rather than restricts us. In particular, the use of percussion instrumentation, a musical element that underscores virtually all music of ASEAN cultures, gives us a sense of hope that the arts can bring even in these difficult times.