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Hungry Ghost Festival

Singapore, Singapore
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Hungry Ghost Festival

This is a advisory post to tourists who will be coming over this month and not a question.

So the ramadan festival is coming to a halt tomorrow, it dosent mean that the festivals in singapore end here. In fact it continues and is getting more hyped!

So whats on in this bustling city of singapore?

the month of end aug- september means that the gates of hell opens! Yes ghosts,ancestors are free to roam about and receive offerings from fellow human beings. In return human beings are assured of peace and harmony on earth.

Sounds abit odd right? but during this period of time locals will gather for performances, food, auctions and prayers.

here's the explanation

in the heartlands celebrations are held at carparks. which consists of a big stage for getai, a smaller stage for puppet performance, a auction stage and a prayer stage, there will also be places for those bigbig joss sticks to be put at.

getai is very popular in singapore and only shown in this season, its a display of mordern performances, both singing and dancing with a host. this is to entertain the ghosts with modern performances. there will be a seating area for guests to seat, however theres a catch DO NOT SIT ON THE FIRST ROW OF CHAIRS!!.

why so? the first row is reserved for the ghosts as they are VIP's of this festival and therefore the first row is MEANT for them. the show usually begins at around 8pm onwards till 11pm.

next up is a very traditional take to the performance stage. Which is the puppet show here, puppets featuring traditional chinese characters are used and together with traditional instruments . Stories will be told mainly in mandarin/hokkien/dialects. and once again the front row of seats is prohibited from seating.

this is a very old and traditional art, and is quickly fading so not many places will have.

Auctions are also an important part in the 7th month festival as it helps to raise funds for the next year's celebration. As orneous as it sounds a solid piece charcoal(Or-kim) or black gold, heavily decorated is supposed to bring good luck to busniess IS the MOST EXPENSIVE item. next up is the red color rice bin with lots of decorations and paste with the word (man) abundance. Held with a 10 course dinner service and lots of beer.

you can watch this bidding session for free just by watching from the side.

Prayers are held during this month to pray for harmony and good fortune. buckets and buckets of rice, oil, salt,sugar will be offered. in some places luxury foods such as roast piglet, roast duck will be offered. lots and lots of joss paper folded into gold ignots will be burnt together with joss sticks in both large scale and small scale.

unique things this month: no weddings will be held by the chinese as it is very unlucky. also the abundance of ghost movies and haunted houses will be widespread.

hope everyone have a wonderful time here and enjoy yourselves in this festive month.

France
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for Nepal, Tibet, Bhutan, Bhaktapur, Kathmandu, Jomsom, Mustang Region, Namche Bazaar, Sagarmatha National Park, Annapurna Region
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1. Re: Hungry Ghost Festival

Thank you so much! The festival seems to be strange. I saw a similar post yesterday about the festival, probably by you or someone else. It seems to he quite interesting festival.....your update is great and informative!

Singapore, Singapore
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2. Re: Hungry Ghost Festival

Yep. It is indeed a very odd festival and can me seen widely in Singapore. Sorry bout the similar posting, dint notice that there was another post on this festival by another person.

Hope everyone is able to enjoy this festival. :)

Singapore, Singapore
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3. Re: Hungry Ghost Festival

My first listing of hungry ghost festival religious celebration (note they are held only for a few days in different locations round the island)

1) Tanjong Pagar MRT (in front of Orchid Hotel) open space

Please provide any locations you come across. Thanks guys!

San Clemente...
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4. Re: Hungry Ghost Festival

Thank you for a very informative post. Going to Singapore in 2 days! I'm an avid photographer who loves to capture festivities, celebrations of places I visit. I will be in Singapore Sept. 13-16. Where photography would be allowed, it would be great if I could photograph celebrations like rituals, weddings. I always ask permission and very discreet and respectful when I shoot. I'd be happy to give them images as well.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Singapore, Singapore
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5. Re: Hungry Ghost Festival

Hi RamonaBR,

i've found a website that has Getai schedules, tho majorly in chinese, feel free to google translate :)

…stomp.com.sg/stomp/getai/season7/schedule/

Btw, chinese weddings are normally held in grand hotels and unlike the malay's who hold theirs downstairs.

For the chinese, Funerals are held downstairs.

Downstairs means, the void deck of the HDB blocks. usually quite an open space with a communal seating space.

Hope you have a wonderful time here :)

San Clemente...
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6. Re: Hungry Ghost Festival

Gosh, Gerbilly3, I really appreciate your help.... such a quick reply, too. I have a Singaporean friend who'll help me locate weddings and celebrations. Hopefully we'll come across one. I'll be staying at Trader's Hotel maybe I can find out if there is an event there and would photography be allowed.

Singapore, Singapore
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7. Re: Hungry Ghost Festival

Gee, thanks :)

Traders hotel is at the mouth of the orchard belt, and very near to botanic gardens.

You may wish to check the botanic gardens website http://www.sbg.org.sg/calendar/calendar.asp

for list of events there.

Chinatown would be an excellent place to explore and learn about singapore's chinese culture. Rich with history and yummylicious food, this website here is sure to tempt anyone to make their way there.

http://www.chinatown.sg/

and here's their facebook page

https://www.facebook.com/chinatownsg?ref=ts

Unfortunately, im not too sure about events photography, since most of them have hired photographers. You may wish to check the nearby hotels for more information. Oh, and one thing about this season, since its also the mooncake festivals, hotels along orchard/city are have come up with interesting mixes to the traditional mooncake, do take a snap and hopefully a bite of these delicious creations.

Enjoy :D

Singapore
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8. Re: Hungry Ghost Festival

Just be careful when you walk back to your hotel at night....muahahaha.... do not respond to anyone calling out to you after midnight...muahahaha..,.,,

ok sorry enjoy this festival!

9. Re: Hungry Ghost Festival

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