Arts Aloud: May 2017

Published on 26 April 2017

Discover how the arts have made a change in the lives of some of our fellow everyday Singaporeans.

My interest in Chinese calligraphy started in secondary school when
I watched my first Chinese period drama, Romance of the Three Kingdoms (1994). Recently, I started attending classes at the Singapore Calligraphy Centre. After class, I’ll walk through the exhibition hall and admire and study the exhibits. A recent exhibition I attended featured works by some of Singapore’s famous calligraphy teachers/masters. I’m eager to learn more about the different forms of writing styles and works by popular scholars from different dynasties, such as Ouyang Xun, Su Shi and Wang Xizhi, and find out how their works impacted their careers and society in their respective eras. In the future, I hope to initiate a collaborative work with my sister — who is a graphic design student — to integrate Western works with Chinese calligraphy.


“ I recently caught Pangdemonium’s The Pillowman at the Victoria Theatre. It’s the second time they’re staging it and it’s an excellent play — a black comedy, one of my favourite genres. I loved how the production married the use of multimedia with the traditional use of staging and wonderfully designed props to deliver a darkly wonderful tale of twistedness, in the style of the subverted fairy tales we read as children. This experience has inspired me to maybe, just maybe, write my own play — if I can get past that children’s story or my blog first! I’m now an ardent Pangdemonium supporter and I’ve bought their season tickets for the third year running. I’m looking forward to Tango (their first staging of a piece of new Singapore writing) in May, as well as the Esplanade’s National Theatre Live movie-like screenings of exceptional plays, and the Singapore Writers Festival later this year. ”


“ Recently, I watched a Singaporean musical, Detention Katong by Dream Academy. It was introduced to me and my classmates by my Literature teacher, when we mentioned to her that we were curious about upcoming plays or musicals available. I found the musical very engaging because its setting and plot were truly relatable to our lives as students in Singapore. It showed me that I’m not the only one who is experiencing stress in school or in relationships. The story touched on how teenagers tend to do mischievous or unexpected things just to get the attention of their friends, teachers or parents; and how a lack of communication across generations can lead to misunderstandings and tense relations. It made me appreciate the blessings in my life today, to be thankful for my friends and family, and to believe there will always be a solution to the problems we face. ”


“ In March, I attended AfterWords: Writing as Resistance, a Sing Lit Station writing workshop by Clara Chow, author of Dream Storeys, a collection of short stories I highly recommend. I found out about this event at Marine Parade Public Library through the Ethos Books Facebook page. There was no question about going for this as I’ve always wanted to develop my writing style with an experienced author. During the workshop, she brought us through a series of short writing exercises on how to use events in our lives as fodder for our stories. She also showed us certain literary techniques to make our accounts more interesting. It was only an hour-long workshop, but it has motivated me to write using inspiration from my daily life. I’m planning to go for the next instalment of this workshop in a few months’ time. I hope to learn even more from Clara! ”


Scroll Up