Thursday, August 13, 2009

A Blast from the Past

Dirty Laundry, Mergers and Undercover: Plays from Theatreworks' Writers' Lab (1995)
is a collection of seven plays including Eleanor Wong’s ’Mergers and Accusations’,
Otto Fong’s ‘Cetecea’,
Tan Tarn How’s ‘Undercover’,
Enrico Varella’s ‘Others’,
Theresa Tan’s ‘Dirty Laundry’,
Lee Chee Keng’s ‘Breaking Through’, and
Robin Loon’s ‘Watching the Clouds Go By’.

Years ago, in 1994 to be exact, I wrote a play called ‘Others’, about minorities in Singapore. I was, then, part of TheatreWork’s Writer’s Laboratory. I had acted in 25 runs of Michael Chiang’s Army Daze, and was awarded a grant by the Ministry of Information and The Arts for my two plays, Conversations in the Dark, Part 1 and 2. I thought that it would help enhance my writing ability and creativity by immersing myself in a group of like-minded individuals. Within the illustrious group of writers were established writers and budding, future writers. I managed to muster enough courage to pen my thoughts down in a relatively-finished play; it is still rough around the edges when I read. Such is the clarity of the wisdom of hindsight. I enjoyed my reading of it with local television host and sports commentator, Daryl David; he helped me flesh out my virtual characters. I am grateful for being invited into this amazing group of theatre writers/social commentators.

TheatreWorks is an independent, non-profit Singaporean theatre company that develops and nurtures professional arts skills. It supports Singapore artists, and articulates the Singapore arts through its various productions and developmental programmes. It promotes and produces Singapore writing, interdisciplinary performances, collaborations with international artists. It also provides residencies for visual artists, documentary filmmakers or creative professionals working in contemporary visual culture, and new media. The distinguished theatre company recognises its responsibility in encouraging awareness of human and social issues, and is dedicated to sharing the transcendant potential of art with arts-lovers and the Singapore community.

The book is available for purchase at Select Books, Tanglin Shopping Centre (Tel: 67321515) at a retail price of SGD18 each.

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