Continuing its commitment to promote arts and culture among Perakeans, PORT (People Of Remarkable Talent) hosted the 1Malaysia Arts Festival with the theme, “Unity Thru Arts”. Located along Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah, the venue saw a hive of activity, organised with the collaborative efforts of nine groups. Among them were UiTM, Ipoh Bas Stand, Mashdar Legacy, Pewaris, Barisan NGO Negeri Perak and Pincer.
The event was graced by Aminudin Hashim, a member of PORT’s Board of Directors and its Chairman, Dato’ Zainol Fadzi Paharudin, Executive Councillor for Culture, Arts, Youth and Sports. Their arrival was greeted by a flash mob dance performed by Ipoh City Rockers.
Once the formalities were over, the stage was opened for multi-cultural performances; a dhol (double-headed drum) by the Ipoh Dhol Federation, a Chinese dance by students from SMK Poi Lam, a semi-classical Indian dance by Suchitradewi followed by a Malay number by Urban Tari Dancers.
Indie rock band, Bittersweet, then took to the stage. The five-piece band from Ipoh has been making waves internationally. Fresh from their gig at the Saarang World Music Fest 2013 in Chennai, India, the band entertained the audience with four tracks including their hits, “A Perfect Match” and “Kuching Hitam”.
Taiping-born crooner, Jamal Abdillah was the star of the evening. With a singing career spanning almost four decades, Jamal had the crowd singing along with him, especially to his classics, “Gadis Melayu” and “Seniman Menangis”.
Jamal Abdillah and Bittersweet were subsequently recognised by the Perak State Government as Perakeans who have crossed international boundaries with their songs and music. They were given the Legendary Pop Artiste of Malaysia and Perak Young Musicians awards, respectively.
Besides stage performances there was also an exhibition on local arts and handicrafts.