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The Nine Emperor Gods Festival, which begins on the eve of the ninth lunar month and runs for nine days, is one of the major religious events in the Chinese lunar calendar. The festival is commonly associated with Taoism, with syncretic elements from Buddhism and Confucianism. It involves diverse institutions, temples, dialect communities and ritual systems, and it is practised not only in Singapore but also in various parts of Southeast Asia.

With the support of the NHB’s Heritage Research Grant, Dr Koh Keng We and his team from the NTU studied the festival to document its associated rituals, structures and activities. The project included oral interviews with organisers and devotees, as well as photography and videography.