Ariffin Abdullah

artistic director


Started out as a guitarist in 1982, performing for ad-hoc weddings and Hari Raya shows in school and Community Clubs.

Joined Ulu Pandan CC in 1988, initially as a member of a pop rock band. By 1994, switched to playing mandolin before switching to accordion & keyboards to provide music support for Ulu Pandan CC dance group led by Mr Salleh Buang, a well-known choreographer.

Joined Persatuan Kemuning Singapura (PKS), under the same dance group, in 1990. Support various PKS projects throughout including its yearly Pentas Kemuning, Festival Teater Remaja as well one overseas project at Udonthani Festival, Northern Thailand (1996).

Won rock competition Hotline in 1998 with rock group Knick Knack as a keyboardist.

Formed Sri Mahligai in 2000 at Hong Kah North CC. Formally register as a society in 2002.

Participated in various major Malay dance projects such as Peoples’ Association’s Gentarasa 2002, 2003& 2005; Sriwana’s Malam Tari Serumpun (2003), SAL5060 Tari Muzika Era 50-60an (2004) & Jubilee Emas Sriwana (2005); Perkumpulan Seni’s Gema Tari (2002, 2003), Malam Jaluran Seni Tari (2005), Majlis Pusat’s Festival Tari Serumpun (2006) and Esplanade’s Pesta Raya (2002-2006) etc. Sri Mahligai was also involved in Esplanade’s Trial and Orientation program as well as its Open House in 2002 and was given the honour to perform our very own concert Sacred or Otherwise in Pesta Raya 2005 at the Recital Studio.

Featured in various television programmes such as Kopi ‘O’ The Tarik (1999), Jam! Dondang Sayang (2001), Ikon (2001), Rentra 1 (2004), Rentra 2 (2006), Suria Raya Live (2006) and Gemilang (2006-2007).

Participated in various overseas projects with People’s Association such as Bintan Arts Festival, Tg Pinang, Indonesia (2002), Festival Melayu Sedunia, Pekan Baru, Indonesia (2003); Perkumpulan Seni’s Pesta Gendang Nusantara, Malacca, Malaysia (2003).

Along the way, has collaborated with distinguished activists of the Malay dance and music circle, including Osman A Hamid (Peoples’ Association, Young Artist Award recipient), Jais Minsawi (Orkestra Melayu Singapura), Azmi Juhari (Azpirasi), Mazlina Buang (Atrika), Salleh Buang (PKS), Fauziah Hanom Yusoff (Sriwana), Sarip Sahar (Perkumpulan Seni), Nasir Aman (Majlis Pusat), Nadiputra (scriptwriter, Cultural Medallion recipient), Yusnor Ef (producer), Tom Ibnur and Mahdi Bahri (Indonesia).

Produced two traditional Malay music albums, Jati (2004) & Mutiara (2005). To date, songs from both albums has dominated the SYF Central Judging For Malay Dance festival, chalking up to 36% (2005), 32% (2006) and recently, 42% (2007) of all dance music featured in the festival.

Established an info-portal website ( on Sri Mahligai, as well as details and resources on Malay music and dance, since 2001. The website was selected as part of National Library Board’s Web Archive Singapore in 2006.

Sri Mahligai has also performed to more than 240 wedding performances, corporate events and community and cultural events.

participating in

  • WOMEX 2012
  • WOMEX 2008