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The Singapore Trilogy (review)

The Singapore Trilogy (review) 372 B oo k R ev ie ws T H E SI N G AP O R E T R I L O GY . By Robert Yeo. Singapore: Landmark Books, 2001. 215 pp. Paper S$19.90 In one of his many discussions of theatre and liminality, Victor Turner quoted Thomas HardyÕs observation that Òif a way to the better there be, it exacts a full look at the worst.Ó One of the most fascinating aspects of theatre in Sin- gapore is the oblique way in which it has tended to engage in social discussion in order to fulÞll HardyÕs admonition Ñsidling up to controversial political and social issues while trying not to upset the powers -that -be in the govern- ment, which has traditionally kept a tight rein on theatre through censorship. As a result of these pressures, many Singapore playwrights have become mas - ters of implied discussion, using techniques such as allegory, the Òdevised play,Ó and historical parallel to examine hot issues. Robert Yeo (whom I knew slightly during the two years I taught in Sin- gapore) is a Þxture of the Singapore arts scene; indeed, he was chair of the Ministry of CultureÕs drama advisory group http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Asian Theatre Journal University of Hawai'I Press

The Singapore Trilogy (review)

Asian Theatre Journal , Volume 19 (2) – Sep 1, 2002

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2002 The University of Hawai'i Press.
ISSN
1527-2109

Abstract

372 B oo k R ev ie ws T H E SI N G AP O R E T R I L O GY . By Robert Yeo. Singapore: Landmark Books, 2001. 215 pp. Paper S$19.90 In one of his many discussions of theatre and liminality, Victor Turner quoted Thomas HardyÕs observation that Òif a way to the better there be, it exacts a full look at the worst.Ó One of the most fascinating aspects of theatre in Sin- gapore is the oblique way in which it has tended to engage in social discussion in order to fulÞll HardyÕs admonition Ñsidling up to controversial political and social issues while trying not to upset the powers -that -be in the govern- ment, which has traditionally kept a tight rein on theatre through censorship. As a result of these pressures, many Singapore playwrights have become mas - ters of implied discussion, using techniques such as allegory, the Òdevised play,Ó and historical parallel to examine hot issues. Robert Yeo (whom I knew slightly during the two years I taught in Sin- gapore) is a Þxture of the Singapore arts scene; indeed, he was chair of the Ministry of CultureÕs drama advisory group

Journal

Asian Theatre JournalUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: Sep 1, 2002

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