5 - 22 July 2018
LASALLE College of the Arts, Singapore
W!LD RICE proudly presents Singapore Theatre Festival 2018, a thrilling theatrical event that celebrates new voices and local writing. Created and performed by the nation’s finest theatre-makers, the eight bold, brilliant productions in the Festival tell our stories – the stories that matter, the stories that need to be heard, and the stories that make us who we are.
For three exhilarating weeks, let us entertain – and engage! – you with these thought-provoking plays that represent the very best of Singapore theatre!
About the Singapore Theatre Festival
Presented by W!LD RICE, the Singapore Theatre Festival is an event dedicated to celebrating contemporary Singaporean theatre through the development and presentation of new and original local writing. The Festival takes place in the months of July and August, when Singapore celebrates National Day; it is in this context that theatre artists and the public are encouraged to engage in conversations about theatre, Singapore and the world.
In six editions since 2006, the Festival has collaborated with local theatre companies and artists to present 33 productions, including 19 world premieres, of new local writing. The Festival prides itself on having collaborated with undiscovered, emerging and established playwrights, including Alfian Sa’at, Eleanor Wong, Huzir Sulaiman, Chong Tze Chien, Ovidia Yu, Joel Tan and Thomas Lim. In 2013, the Festival launched ‘In The Spotlight’ to present a season dedicated to the works of a single local playwright. It remains the only festival in Singapore that focuses on presenting fully realised productions of new local writing.
To find out more about the Festival, please visit www.singaporetheatrefestival.com
Featuring the work of 8 Playwrights and 7 Directors, the plays in the 2018 Singapore Theatre Festival tell stories of contemporary Singapore and give voice to people from all walks of life: from actors and journalists, to domestic workers, soldiers and flea-market vendors. The plays also span a range of genres and forms, from the political thriller to verbatim plays that explore social issues and ideas familiar to us all. The 8 brand-new plays at the Festival will open your eyes, touch your hearts and blow your minds!
- Press Gang
- Building A Character
- 招: When The Cold Wind Blows
- One Metre Square: Voices From Sungei Road
- An Actress Prepares
To find out more about the Festival, please visit www.singaporetheatrefestival.com.
If you're hungry for more, join us for the FESTIVITIES at LASALLE’s Lowercase Cafe throughout the Festival! Free events such as The Art & Life Sessions, Late Night Fix and Weekend Brunch will be taking place over the three weeks of the Festival. The Art & Life Sessions is a series of free lively forums that allows artists and audiences to come together to reflect on the urgent issues of the day. You can also enjoy a Late Night Fix of activities, which includes readings of brand-new plays as well as some sizzling stand-up comedy. Join us for a relaxing Weekend Brunch, in which you can learn more about the theatre landscapes in different cities, Dramaturgy from Mark Pritchard (Resident Dramaturg of Australia's Malthouse Theatre) or find out more about the migrant experience in a reading of short plays created by BIRDS (a collective of migrant workers from Indonesia, Bangladesh and the Philippines).
THE ART & LIFE SESSIONS
What is it in real LIFE that inspires the ART onstage?
How does ART relate to, engage with, and resonate with LIFE?
The ART & LIFE SESSIONS is a series of free lively forums about the urgent issues of the day. Engage with some of the most forward-thinking minds of “the concerned citizenry” – including artists, activists, academics and politicians – to exchange views and opinions about the pressing issues of our times.
PUBLISH AND PERISH: THE PERILS OF SINGAPORE JOURNALISM
8 JULY / SUNDAY 5.30PM / LOWERCASE CAFÉ
Singapore has been consistently ranked in the bottom sixth of the World Press Freedom Index. While the methodology of the index has often been questioned, one cannot deny that the limits placed on the press are unusual for a supposedly democratic First World country. Join us as we diagnose the health of the media in an era of declining print circulation, authoritarian regulations and ‘fake news’.
US AND THEM: ARE FOREIGNERS FOREVER FOREIGN?
15 JULY / SUNDAY 5.30PM / LOWERCASE CAFÉ
Singapore is built on the back of migrant labour. And yet, migrant workers often live segregated lives in remote dormitories and are prohibited from accessing facilities such as condo swimming pools. Considering the social and legal barriers that they face, can they ever become ‘one of us’? Join us as we attempt to break down the myths surrounding the unsung heroes of our dynamic economic growth.
NO PLACE LIKE HOME: OR NO PLACE FOR HOME?
22 JULY / SUNDAY 5.30PM / LOWERCASE CAFÉ
Singapore has increased its land mass by 22% since independence. And yet, it keeps on running out of space. Bukit Brown, Sungei Road and the Pearl Bank Apartments are some of the recent casualties of the city-state’s drive towards urban redevelopment. Is there any way that we can save our built heritage? Join us as we explore how ceaseless rebuilding can undermine the delicate project of nation-building.
LATE NIGHT FIX
ABSENCE MAKES THE HEART...
6 JULY / FRIDAY 10PM / LOWERCASE CAFÉ
Once upon a time, there were nuanced and even iconic roles for Indian actors in Singapore’s English language theatre scene. However, since the 2000s, such roles have slowly vanished. Written by Aswani Aswath, Absence Makes the Heart... is an attempt to trace the presence and absence of Indian roles in Singapore’s English-language theatre scene, from its earliest days to the present moment. Starring actors Rebekah Sangeetha Dorai, Sivakumar Palakrishnan and Grace Kalaiselvi, the show will feature a parade of unforgettable characters, like Rosemary Joseph from Beauty World and Kannagi from Buang Suay.
IMDA Rating: Advisory 16 (Mature Content and Coarse Language)
STAND UP FOR SINGAPORE
14 JULY / SATURDAY 10PM / LOWERCASE CAFÉ
Looking to have a W!LD, wicked night of fun, laughter and comedy? Join some of the nation’s most exciting stand-up comics for a raucous show that promises to tickle your funny bone as it excavates the lighter side to living in Singapore!
IMDA Rating: Advisory 16 (Mature Content and Coarse Language)
20 JULY / FRIDAY 10PM / LOWERCASE CAFÉ
In 1972, Singaporean newspaper New Nation published a series of articles called The Outsiders, featuring interviews with various queer women who spoke out on condition of anonymity. Fast forward more than 40 years, and what has changed? Playwright Al an Sa’at spoke with more than 20 queer women in Singapore – including an activist, a writer, a cosplayer, a student and a Paralympian. The Insiders is a documentary play that captures tales of coming out, falling in love and creating alternative families. Join actors Yap Yi Kai, Farah Ong and Deonn Yang as they read from a specially-curated one-hour version of this exciting new play.
IMDA Rating: Restricted 18 (Homosexual Theme)
MAPPING SOUTHEAST ASIAN CONTEMPORARY THEATRE (MASCOT)
14 JULY / SATURDAY 11AM / LASALLE CAMPUS BLK G ROOM 402
MASCOT Vol. 1: Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand
Join us in this informative session as artists from Singapore, Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur provide an overview of the theatre landscapes in their respective cities.
How are mainstream and independent theatre groups and forms defined in each country? In the absence of an official arts council, how are works funded and produced? How has support from international cultural associations resulted in collaborations and engagements with global avant-garde currents? How does theatre intersect with other social and artistic movements in each country? And what can you catch when you're travelling in the region?
The MASCOT sessions provide an open forum for artists and audiences to learn about one another and to exchange views. It aims to open a window to the diverse theatre practices in the region, to encourage translation efforts that will facilitate the circulation of theatre texts, to foster collaborations among artists, to cultivate audiences for Southeast Asian works and to democratise knowledge of contemporary theatre trends beyond festival circuits and closed networks.
ADVENTURES IN DRAMATURGY WITH MARK PRITCHARD
15 JULY / SUNDAY 11AM / LASALLE CAMPUS BLK F ROOM 307 / $30
‘What does a dramaturg do?’ is a question commonly asked in contemporary theatre today. The answers often vary, as do the functions associated with the role – which can include ‘literary manager’, ‘programming executive’, ‘script editor’, ‘rehearsal note-taker’ and even ‘public engagement officer’.
Is it necessary for a dramaturg to have a well-defined role? Or is the flexibility of the term ‘dramaturg’ reflective of contemporary performance-making, where boundaries are blurred and traditional collaborative hierarchies challenged?
In this presentation and workshop, join Mark Pritchard, Resident Dramaturg of Australia’s Malthouse Theatre, as he leads practical exercises and shares some of his experiences and past projects for discussion. What is the role of the dramaturg in creating new work? How are new forms, processes and the political moment changing the ways in which we make theatre today?
MIGRANT STORIES: A READING WITH BIRDS
15 JULY / SUNDAY 1PM / LOWERCASE CAFE
BIRDS is a group consisting of migrant workers from Indonesia, Bangladesh and the Philippines. The name is a reference to migratory birds. United by an interest in theatre and performance, they have been receiving guidance from Haresh Sharma, Resident Playwright of The Necessary Stage. Join us in this showcase of readings from short plays created and written by the members of BIRDS.
IMDA Rating: Advisory (Some Mature Content)
MEET THE ARTISTS
TALKBACK THURSDAY / FEEDBACK FRIDAY
Throughout the Festival, performances on Thursday and Friday nights will be followed by ‘Meet the Artists’ sessions in the respective theatre venues. Audience feedback plays a critical part in the development of new writing. These sessions give you the opportunity to share your experience of the play with your fellow audience members, as well as the playwrights, directors and actors who have worked tirelessly to create each show in the Festival.
To find out more about the FEST!VITIES, please visit www.singaporetheatrefestival.com.