Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia has a vibrant and multi-cultural and broad-reaching theatre scene that draws enthusiastic crowds. The style is varied and so is the language in which these productions are conceived. You can find plays of every genre and category being produced in a variety of locations from cafes to formal opera houses. If you are enthusiastic about theatre in Kuala Lumpur or are looking for plays in Kuala Lumpur, there are some places in the city you must visit. The city has a rich tradition of tourism and continues to cater to visitors and is committed to providing them with the best tourist experiences including theatre.
If you are a theatre aficionado and are looking to sample the Kuala Lumpur performing arts, then look no further than Istana Budaya. This premier institution is the National Theatre and is home to the National Theatre Company as well as the National Symphony Orchestra. The theatre is designed to resemble a traditional Malay House and is considered one of the top ten sophisticated theatres in the world. The theatre plays host to several Broadway productions such as Mamma Mia! and Cats. The Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre houses a huge number of studios and theatres, an academy that runs workshops and seminars, cafes and restaurants as well as a small performing arts library and is considered the heart of KL’s performance community. PJ Live Arts have conducted successful national and international shows as well as productions geared towards children. The Play Haus is a new addition to the theatre community and is dedicated to showcasing the local performance acts. The Japan Foundation Kuala Lumpur (JFKL) promotes cultural exchange between Japan and Malaysia and organizes regular cultural performances for the public. The British Academy of Performing Arts is the first integrated pre-university performing arts academy in Malaysia.
Kuala Lumpur is home to several annual theatre festivals which showcases local and international talent and attracts visitors from all over the world. The Damansara International Arts Festival takes place annually over a two week period with theatre as the focus in the first week. The Johor Arts Festival, one of the country’s longest-running arts festivals, brings together performances, workshops, exhibitions, and activities by international artists as well as emerging local talent. The Melaka Art and Performance Festival (MAPFest) takes place at its signature venue, the St Paul’s Church ruins. This festival strips away the forced restrictions of ‘staging’ and encourages experimentation with performance arts. Kuala Lumpur has a diverse community of theatre and performance artists who add depth and dimension in the discourse of art. The many theatre festivals held in the city are a testament to the commitment and love the city has with performance arts. Do visit the many theatres in Kuala Lumpur for a performance you will never forget.