Farewell to New World’s End: A Reflection on Singapore’s Immersive Art Journey

In a bittersweet announcement, OH! Open House bids farewell to its groundbreaking immersive audio experience, New World’s End. After three years of captivating audiences with its unique blend of storytelling and exploration, the curtains are set to close on July 14, 2024. This decision comes amidst rising operational costs and a strategic shift towards new ventures for the independent arts organisation.

New World’s End wasn’t just an audio experience; it was a journey through time and space, inviting visitors to immerse themselves in a fictional love story set against the backdrop of 1960s Singapore. Through a simple pair of headphones and an MP3 player, participants embarked on a self-guided tour through the historic Jalan Besar neighbourhood, encountering meticulously crafted spaces and poignant narratives along the way.

From its inception in July 2021, New World’s End defied expectations and left an indelible mark on Singapore’s cultural landscape. It was the first permanent arts experience led by a local non-profit organisation, setting a precedent for innovative art initiatives in the city-state. Under the visionary leadership of Alan Oei, Executive Director of OH! Open House, the experience pushed the boundaries of traditional art exhibitions and guided walking tours, captivating over 18,000 locals and tourists alike.

Reflecting on the journey, Oei expressed pride in New World’s End’s achievements, stating, “When we created New World’s End, it was with a vision to introduce a slower, more immersive form of tourism. If Singapore is known for Jewel or Marina Bay, it should also be known for the rich histories and layers of its streets.” Indeed, the experience offered a deeper understanding of Singapore’s cultural heritage, shedding light on lesser-known stories such as the New World Amusement Park and the tragic collapse of Hotel New World.

Throughout its tenure, New World’s End served as a catalyst for conversation and connection, bridging gaps between diverse audiences and fostering a deeper appreciation for Singapore’s multifaceted identity. As the final chapter draws to a close, OH! Open House extends its heartfelt gratitude to partners, patrons, and stakeholders who supported this transformative journey.

To commemorate this milestone, a special edition experience will be available from May 15 to July 14, 2024. This enhanced tour promises deeper insights into the characters and era of 1960s Singapore, offering visitors one last chance to be enveloped in the magic of New World’s End. Additionally, all tickets and merchandise will be offered at a 50% discount during this period, ensuring that as many people as possible can partake in this farewell celebration.

As New World’s End prepares to take its final bow, it leaves behind a legacy of innovation and inspiration, paving the way for future generations of artists and storytellers to continue pushing the boundaries of immersive art experiences. While this chapter may be ending, the spirit of exploration and discovery ignited by New World’s End will undoubtedly live on in the hearts and minds of all who were fortunate enough to embark on this unforgettable journey.

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