Category: Arts and CulturePage 1 of 4
Online Editor Arman Shah pens his thoughts on “Tender Submission”, the latest play that’s proudly staged by Checkpoint Theatre.
In episode 01 of our brand new podcast “Deeper Conversation with Arman Shah”, Lucas Ho talks about his latest play “Tender Submission” that’s presented by Checkpoint Theatre.
“Being a part of the musical felt amazing, because as ITE students, we were already looked at as the black sheep of society. So there was this genuine sense of unity; this sense of brotherhood and sisterhood. Everyone in the production really looked out for one another.”
“Everyone was born for a reason, and mine is to help the next generation discover themselves through music. Identity is the safeguard against low self-esteem, and everything I’m doing now is to help the youths find their voice.”
Playwright Myle Yan Tay takes an intimate look at the realities and conundrums faced by Malay and Indian men in Singapore.
“I decided to sketch strangers as a hobby because I wanted to see their reaction when I gave the drawing to them. With paid work, the client already knows what to expect, and I more or less know how they might react. There’s no element of surprise. But with strangers?”
“When I got into medical school, I did a lot of soul-searching and concluded that art is something I want to do long-term. It would be nice if I was able to practise as a doctor, but also have the balls to call myself an artist. That was the ultimate aspiration; the ultimate goal.”
“What I really like doing, especially through ‘Textures’, is to develop the relationship between parent and child through reading. Nighttime reading is something I personally enjoyed and miss doing with my son, although we don’t do it anymore because he’s already grown up.”
“You know, there’s this stereotype that Malays are lazy. So, when I get selected by key figures in the dance industry to represent Singapore at international competitions, I am very proud to show that Singaporeans can make it. It makes me prouder to be Malay as well.”
“My latest work, ‘To Kill The Birds & The Bees’, is a satirical slice of life film that talks about sex education – or lack thereof – in Singapore. It follows the crazy sexual encounters of four Singaporeans and how they unfold.”
“Society puts a huge pressure on us to be attached to someone, to want children and to reach other societal milestones. Ann is wondering: ‘Do I really want that? And on what terms do I want that? Is it possible to find what you want, and what does it require of our partners?’”
We take a look at the weeks and months of rehearsals that went into bringing Faith Ng’s latest play on adulthood, parenthood, and what it means to be happy in contemporary Singapore, live on stage.
“I hope audiences who watch ‘The Fourth Trimester’ will have more empathy and compassion for others. Stop putting pressure on and asking people when they’re going to have kids. It’s such a sensitive question…”
“And to everyone who’s watching this play, I hope you come to realise that it’s okay if your life is turning out differently from what you thought it would be. If you want to remain unmarried until the age of 35, so be it. Don’t want kids? That doesn’t make you any less normal. Go write your own story.”
“I think it’s important to tell this story because often, once children come into the picture, especially in a city as stressful as Singapore, everything becomes about them and whether you, as parents, have enough to provide for them. If we neglect that relationship, then problems may arise and eat into how we feel about parenthood.”
“What convinced me to take up this role were the many cultural touchpoints that I very much identify with. Faith talks about our struggles with work-life balance, societal and self-imposed pressures, and the gender roles that we conform to or rail against.”
“With stories like ‘The Fourth Trimester’ painting a very realistic picture of parenthood, I hope more people understand that dads need help and support too. And if you’re a dad who may not be doing that much right now, I hope this play reminds you that parenting is a team effort!”
“When the audience watches ‘The Fourth Trimester’, I hope they understand that at the end of the day, it’s not about embodying or being an ‘ideal’. We shouldn’t be so dogged by the idea of perfection that we lose what it means to be in the present.”
“So it always comes back to the same question of ‘Are you happy?’ And what does it even mean to be happy? Does it even matter? Because it’s really hard to be happy in Singapore. There are so many expectations and it’s all very heartbreaking.”
“You can’t stop doing what you love because it’s hard or because you keep getting rejected. Keep on doing it. If you work hard enough and show persistence towards your craft, it’s just a matter of time before you get recognised.”