George Town Festival at a Crossroads

loading Peperangan Bintang is a clever fusion of Kelantanese wayang kulit and the ever-popular saga, Star Wars. The show was one of the centrepieces of Macam-Macam ASEAN.

There is much that Joe Sidek can look back at with great pride, but what lies ahead for GTF, and for him?

George Town has become a household name in the world of South-East Asian arts, and for the best part of nearly a decade, George Town Festival (GTF) has been instrumental in cementing this reputation. This year, the six-week-long festival kicked off on July 28, and brought to Penang a cast of international shows ranging from photo exhibitions to art installations, and from music to theatre and dance.

“We worked hard to reach these results,” says festival director Joe Sidek, who is originally from Johor. Before becoming the island’s entrepreneur and patron of the arts, he was running his family’s factory, and has been a resident of Penang for 50 years.


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