Culture, Events — October 1, 2012 at 3:23 pm

Urbanscapes Festival: 10 Reasons You Should Be There!


1. It’s a Massive Birthday Celebration!

Malaysia’s upcoming Urbanscapes Festival started out indoors in 2002 in the now-defunct Grappa Soho in Bukit Bintang. 10 years on, it has  progressed into a full-fledged outdoor creative arts festival spanning music, arts, fashion, visual design and more — both small and large, local and international. 10 years is indeed a remarkable feat for a festival in Southeast Asia with such humble beginnings, so why hesitate to be a part of history? As founder of Urbanscapes, Adrian Yap, marvelled, “10 years! We’re incredibly proud and grateful for all the support that has enabled us to grow a fully home-grown festival and reach this massive milestone. It has not been smooth all the way but that has definitely made it all the sweeter.” This triumph is definitely a cause for us to don our party gear and celebrate the past 10 years – and hopefully many more to come!

2. Non-Stop Fun and Friends

There will never be a dull moment with not one but four live music stages, with a combined capacity of around 15000 people. That’s potentially 14999 new friends! Say hello to a stranger and explore the festival’s various areas, which promise a myriad of activities: shopping at Central Square, expressing your poetic side in The Field, delving into experimental visual arts installations in The Lab or chalking up eco points at the Green Village.

3. The Amazing Headliners: Yuna… 

We’re sure Malaysians out there will be brimming with pride at the homecoming set of Urbanscapes’ Saturday headliner, Yuna! Touted as “Pharell Williams’ BFF and one of Malaysia’s top overseas ambassadors”, the inspiring young lady’s charming voice has won over listeners from Alor Setar to Hollywood, serving as solid proof that Southeast Asian acts can indeed make it big on the world stage.

4. The Amazing Headliners: …and Sigur Rós!

That’s not all – on Sunday, behold the magic of legendary Icelandic post-rock outfit Sigur Rós, who are performing in Southeast Asian region for the first time ever. Fresh from the release of their stunning latest album ‘Valtari’, the well-loved band are known for their emotionally-stirring live performances.  We can’t wait to experience how their music will translate from the frosty landscapes of Iceland to the balmy tropical heat of Malaysia. 

5. The Eclectic Musical Line-Up

Headliners aside, we’re not lying when we say that the rest of the line-up is equally fantastic. If you had missed The Trees & The Wild (Indonesia) and Tenderfist (Malaysia) at MSA’s showcase at the Reeperbahn Festival in Germany, banish those sorrows as both acts will be performing at Urbanscapes! We’ve also got Singapore’s Charlie Lim, poised to break hearts across the causeway with his irresistably smooth vocals, Hong Kong’s lovely folk-pop outfit 9 Maps, and a stellar selection of Malaysia’s finest musical offerings including Love Me Butch, Darren Ashley Band, OJ Law and more to be announced.

6. Get Creative

Apart from music, the festival will also host a plethora of arts and creative initiatives. As Yap explains, “At the heart of it, Urbanscapes has always been about providing the platform for fans of all creative persuasions to come together over a day or weekend to discover, share and engage with one another.” Amongst those featured include specially-commissioned Lithuanian street artist Ernest Zacharevic, whose murals have been transforming the walls and streets of Penang over the past year. There will also be a poetry slam from Poetry Cafe KL, architecture meets audio-visual trippery from Kontak! and themancalled uncle, physical and stage installations from the likes of KARYA, and various others to discover and be inspired by.

7. Shop Til You Drop

Good news for retailers and crafty cats – Urbanscapes also welcome vendors who want to sell their wares to the festival crowd. Simply email them at for more information. This also doubles up as good news for those who love shopping, as we’re sure you’ll find great gift ideas, crafts and souvenirs to bring the memory of your Urbanscapes experience home with you.

8. Fun for the Whole Family

Urbanscapes is a family-friendly event with an all-ages policy. Kids under the age of 12 enter free, so go ahead plan a fun-filled day of music and the arts with your whole family!

9. Forays into Film

As if all that is not enough, Urbanscapes has also embarked on a film project with some of their favourite filmmakers from around the region, each asked to produce two-minute films involving their local communities. Through their films, the filmmakers will be revealing what the number ’10’ means to them. Aside from that, they have been given complete creative control: they could end up shooting mini sci-fi flicks, documentaries, or perhaps a supernatural tale or two! These films are slated to be screened in mid-October so keep a lookout for them!

10. Giving Back

Not only will you be having immense fun, you’ll also be contributing to a good cause! Part of the proceeds from ticket sales for Urbanscapes Festival will be donated to a number of community causes, with further details to be announced on the official website at See you there!

Photo credits: Urbanscapes