One of Ernest Zacharevic's new murals in Ipoh. Photo courtesy of Ernest Zacharevic.
Photo courtesy of Ernest Zacharevic.

Calling all food, arts and history lovers! The Other Festival is taking place from 22 October to 8 November. Brought to you by Kakiseni with the support of the Perak state government and Tourism Perak, this first-time festival sets out to celebrate Ipoh’s culture.

With “Mapping the City” being its theme, attendees can look forward to special trails put together by well-known personalities hailing from Ipoh or with connections with the city. Check out prominent bars in the Old Town with Patrick Teoh’s ‘historical-fiction’ route, trace writer Bernice Chauly’s childhood in a trail that ties in with her memoir Growing Up With Ghosts, go on a performing arts trail by theatrethreesixty called Ascent: These Memories Were Made for Walking, and experience Abby Latif’s interactive trail where you can artistically document your encounters.

Besides heritage trails, festival goers can expect other guided tours, movie screenings, live performances, creative bazaars and workshops. Highlights include a performance by The Cheeky Park, traditional letterpress printing with The Alphabet Press, and an exclusive tour of Hakka miners’ club Han Chin Pet Soo (usually available by appointment only).


Literature fans can look forward to two book launches by Buku Fixi (including Hungry in Ipoh) and a short story writing workshop by authors Julya Oui and Marc de Faoite. Cat-themed colouring books – fittingly titled ‘Ngiau’ – by Fearless Ideas & Design will also be up for grabs. Schoolchildren are welcome to join in a Tote Art Competition, where they can lay out ideas of what they imagine Ipoh will become in the future.

To complement this exciting lineup of activities, the area will be dotted by bazaars with food, books and crafts. A special map featuring several Old Town structures illustrated by artists such as Ajim Juxta, Mey Kamal and Ann Jfr will be available on the first day of the festival.

For event updates and more information, head on to The Other Festival’s Facebook page and view its location map here. Attendees are encouraged to travel via KTM Berhad’s ETS (Electric Train Service), which runs 16 times daily between KL and Ipoh. Enjoy a special 20% discount on the ticket fare when buying direct ETS tickets to Ipoh during the festival duration.

Justine Tan

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