Portuguese to put on show
By Adrian David
Malaca will commemorate the arrival of the Portuguese here in 1511 where they built the Fort A’Famosa (above).
Malacca Portuguese-Eurasian Association president Michael Singho says the event is expected to attract thousands of tourists
KUALA LUMPUR: Historical city Malacca will hold a cultural extravaganza next month as it relives the arrival of the Portuguese here in 1511.
The 500th anniversary of Portuguese history and heritage celebrations will be held at the Portuguese Settlement in Ujong Pasir from Oct 26.
Malacca Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohamad Ali Rustam has been invited to launch the four-day event.
Malacca Portuguese-Eurasian Association president Michael Singho said the fiesta, themed "Our roots.. Our Heritage.. Our Home", would culminate in a commemorative dinner and awards night on Oct 29.
"There will be a fair, exhibitions, demonstrations, traditional events, sale of souvenirs, costumes and handicrafts from cottage industries here, culinary delights, a branyo demonstration, soccer matches involving the Eurasian community, indoor games including darts, chess and carroms, cultural dances and music.
"Day One will open with a mass in church in the evening.
On Day Two, there will be a heritage run, a beauty contest and a cristang song competition. The official opening ceremony by the chief minister will be on Day Three," said Singho.
The fiesta will recapture the moment Afonso d'Albuquerque arrived from Goa, India, with 18 ships and 1,200 men and set foot on Malacca shores on Aug 24, 1511.
The Fort A'Fomosa was built to defend Malacca as a strategic base for Portuguese expansion in the East Indies until 1641 when the Dutch took control.
Singho added that the fiesta was expected to attract hundreds of thousands of tourists, including Eurasians from the Asean region, Australia and Portugal.
"The pulsating beat will complement the ambience of the Portuguese Settlement to provide the ideal atmosphere for a grand get- together," said Singho, whose family of musicians included the famed Os Pombos.
Tourism Malaysia, the Malacca state government and the Portuguese embassy based in Bangkok, Thailand, are offering their support.
For enquiries, call the association's secretariat at 016-2505309; Singho at 017-2244653; association secretary Philomena Singho at 016-2505309; vice-presidents Regina Sta Maria at 012-3657263 and Lawrence Stephen at 016-3356617.
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