Showing posts with label play. Show all posts
Showing posts with label play. Show all posts

Friday, June 30, 2017

SRT's "Forbidden City: Portrait of An Empress" 2017: Diva's Interview with Costume Designer Yang DeRong


A musical extravaganza about the life of Empress Dowager Cixi, "Forbidden City: Portrait of an Empress" will return to the stage for the 4th time at the Esplanade beginning 8 August 2017.

The SRT production, developed by Stephen Clark, Dick Lee and Steve Dexter, was first staged in 2002 as part of the Esplanade's opening. Since then, the play has another two sold out shows in 2003 and 2006. The star of the show, Kit Chan, will return in the main role of Cixi for the 2017 production.

With an epic spanning over decades, "Forbidden City" is a large set with several period costumes hailing from the last dynasty in China. This is a huge undertaking for any costume designer, and that's where talented local designer Yang DeRong comes in to the picture.

Veteran fashion designer Yang DeRong spent several years abroad working with names like Jean-Charles de Castelbajac and fashion group Esprit. He is now back home and has been involved in many high profile international and government projects, including being SG50 NDP Art Director and Costume Designer.

Yang loves the theatre, and his craft has been seen in productions like Theatreworks "The Elephant Man" (1987), SRT's "The Dresser", NUS Cultural Centre's "Man of Letters" and "Beauty World" (2016) by Singapore Street Festival.

He was also designer for SRT's previous run of "Forbidden City" in 2003, and will return to work on this year's production.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

SRT's Shakespeare in the Park 2015: "The Tempest" Raises A Moderate Squall

It rained a couple of hours before showtime when Red Dot Diva attended SRT's Shakespeare in the Park last year (the play was The Merchant of Venice). As fate has it, the weather did a repeat performance again on this year's Labour Day show for "The Tempest".

(Click here to read a previous article on SRT's "The Tempest".)

The dark clouds refused to disperse even after the gates opened at about 6:40PM. As the streaming crowd settled their mats on the lawn, it continued to drizzle. At one point, the rain got heavier, and umbrellas began popping up around the field like colourful mushrooms. Yet, the crowd, hopefuly and undeterred huddling beneath their shade or ponchos, was hopeful that the show will go on.


And it did. It was a sold-out performance that night, and SRT was determined to have the show go on. Luckily, after a short prayer to the weather angels, the rain showed signs of subsiding, with the sky even offering a rainbow tribute. The open-air stage was then promptly wiped and mopped up to get ready for the performance.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Theatre Review: "Mies Julie" Brings The Heat With A Fiery Performance about Race and Gender

The relentless sense of sweat-inducing heat of the semi-desert region of Karoo in South Africa, was felt right from the start as the play "Mies Julie" kicked off at DBS Art Centre

On stage, which was set as a farmhouse during Freedom Day, the very capable actors of the South African State Theatre played out the intense, erotic and ultimately tragic tale about a young white mistress and her affair with her African black male servant, John.

The classic play about the battle about power and control by Swedish playwright August Strindberg had now been spiritually rebirthed in another time and space. This version makes all the swirling emotions of the story even more relevant and illuminating, as writer-director Yael Farber brings it very close to heart and home by setting it in South Africa, when apartheid ended a mere 20 years ago.

Monday, March 24, 2014

SRT's "Rising Son" Is Made In Singapore - An Interview with Dick Lee

This year, the Singapore Repertory Theatre (SRT) has announced a run of locally-made plays in their "Made In Singapore" production series - "A Wedding, A Funeral & Lucky, The Fish" (Dora Tan), "Stand Behind The Yellow Line - Garisan Kuning" (Michelle Tan), and "Rising Son" (Dick Lee).

"Rising Son" is written by well-known performer and composer Dick Lee, who also happens to be SRT's Associate Artistic Director. Unlike his other more familiar works in theatre, which were musicals like "Beauty World" and "Snow.Wolf.Lake", "Rising Son" is part 1 of an epic drama about set against the backdrop of the Japanese Occupation in Singapore during World War II.

The story spans the period of 1941 to 1945, and follows the story of a young ambulance orderly Sunny (Tan Shou Chen), and his younger sister Ruby (Seong Hui Xuan), and their lives and relationships during these horrific times.

To find out more about this new local production, Red Dot Diva posed "Rising Son" 's playright, Dick Lee, a few nosy questions:

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Shakespeare in the Park 2013: Director Bruce Guthrie Shares about the Staging of "Othello"

The historical Fort Canning Park, with its colonial buildings and landmarks, has always been a magical setting for a good Shakespearean play.

This year, the Singapore Repertory Theatre (SRT) has continued its yearly tradition of producing Shakespeare in the Park. And this time, the chosen play is the dark, jealousy-fueled tragedy called "Othello".

With a cast consisting of British actor Daniel Francis as main protagonist Othello, and local-based thespians like Daniel Jenkins and Wendy Kweh, the updated version of the play kicked off its run on 24th April. Apparently, it has already been watched by an audience of over 25,000.

Red Dot Diva has already seen the play, and she cannot deny that the staging was indeed very grand and elaborate. But what she enjoyed most from the play was Daniel Jenkins' portrayal of Iago. The actor had given a wonderfully nuanced performance of a villain without a shred of remorse, which made him even more evil than she ever thought possible.

Director Bruce Guthrie returned to the Red Dot Island this year for the epic production of "Othello". He had also helmed the previous year's light-hearted romantic comedy "Twelfth Night" - which boasted of a gorgeous set that consisted of a beach, a mansion, a swimming pool and a visual projection of an ocean view.

Red Dot Diva got hold of Bruce Guthrie to share more about himself, and what went on behind the staging of "Othello".

Monday, October 31, 2011

Off-Broadway: Fiasco Theatre's "Cymbeline" - A Charming Performance

Undoubtedly, Broadway is one of the main things most people aim for when they are in New York City. For her first ever visit to the megacity, the intrepid Red Dot Diva felt a need for another Shakespearean fix instead. Mainly because she is not a big fan of flashy musicals. (Are those horrified gasps she hears from some distant corner over there??)

Her 'play date' had suggested "Avenue Q", but she had already watched a satisfyingly entertaining version helmed by a Filipino cast on Red Dot Island a couple of years back. So, having scoured a comprehensive list online, it was settled that Red Dot Diva's first theatre outing in New York would be the lesser known Shakespearean play "Cymbeline" at the Barrow Street Theatre - an intimate 199-seat off-Broadway venue. The decision was firmly supported by the many rave reviews from critics for this particular adaptation by Fiasco Theatre.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Diva's Geektastic Highlights of 2010

Everyone seems to be doing "lists" when time is relentlessly hurtling towards a New Year.

Since she is part of the blogosphere at large, Red Dot Diva feels that it is also her civic duty to do a list. Namely - "Red Dot Diva's Geektastic Highlights of 2010".

The "geek" part did not include any gadgets acquired in 2010, however. :(

Red Dot Diva wishes she was able to include an iPhone 4, a snazzy iPad, fancy SLR camera, 3D TV or ultra-portable teleporter in her list. However, since she sold half her blood and part of her liver in order to attend SDCC this year, she was not able to afford these "I ALSO WANTZ!" digital babies. (Any manwich-y generous sponsors out there?? Applications are open.)

One should also note that Red Dot Diva is not a gamer (why not?? ask her when you meet her) and hence, has not X-boxed, Wii-ed and Playstation-ed in any way.

So.. what the frell did Red Dot Diva geek-out over in 2010??

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Local Theatre News

New local theatre production company Pangdemonium! Productions kicked off to a successful start with "The Full Monty" this year.

As a follow-up, Pangdemonium will be offering more nudity with the dark psycho-drama play by Patrick Marber called "Closer". (Red Dot Diva knows that some may already be familiar with the movie version starring Jude Law, Natalie Portman, Clive Owen and Julia Roberts.) The play is directed by Tracie Pang is about love, lust, obsession, betrayal... All those melodramatic stuff. It stars Adrian Pang, Emma Yong, Keagan Kang and Cynthia Lee MacQuarrie as the four main protagonists.

"Closer" will go on stage at the DBS Arts Centre from 17 February to 6 March 2011. Tickets go on sale on December 1st on SISTIC. Remember to check out the early bird discount!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

As Dark As A Blackbird

A tragic tale. A taboo topic. A forbidden love.

This is the premise of the award-winning play by Scottish playright, David Harrower entitled "Blackbird".

After an earlier run for the play was postponed till September this year, Red Dot Diva and her friends have been eagerly waiting to catch the performance at our local theatre. This finally happened at the DBS Art Centre last Thursday.

Staged by the Singapore Repertory Theatre and directed by Tracie Pang, the play was helmed by well-known, local-based theatre actors - Emma Yong and Daniel Jenkins.

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