In 1997, I caught my first Shakespearean play produced by local production company Singapore Repertory Theatre (SRT) at Fort Canning Park. The play was Hamlet, starring a much younger Adrian Pang as the lead. My date thought Shakespeare was for poofs but came along anyway as a gesture of courtship goodwill.
By the end of the play, HE was smitten! The play had been so much fun to watch! The dialogue was quirkily localized and the mastery of the actors’ performance together with the superb coordination of its production team had modernized a 19th century English drama into one that appeals to a widely Singaporean audience!
15 years on, Singaporeans are in love with Shakespeare! Last year, a record 30,000 people attended Macbeth, the fourth of its very successful Shakespeare in the Park Series. The first three being Hamlet (1997), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (2007), and Much Ado About Nothing (2009).
Tonight, on the day of Shakespeare’s birthday, SRT opens its fifth and latest production in the series, Twelfth Night!
Regarded by many as one of Shakespeare’s finest plays, Twelfth Night is filled with music, pranks, farcical misunderstands and of course, love. And in true SRT style, the production will have a modern twist with a festive feel to it. Starring Adrian Pang (again!) and Daniel Jenkins, the play is also directed by Bruce Guthrie, the acclaimed Associate Director of the much-praised The Bridge Project play, Richard III, starring Kevin Spacey late last year.
“I am delighted to be working with SRT again. Our entire company saw Singapore as one of the highlights of our world tour that took the production to 12 cities around the world. Singapore really took the production of Richard III to their hearts and we had such a fantastic time there I jumped at the opportunity to come back with this new production of Twelfth Night”, says Guthrie.
Twelve Night is produced by SRT as part of the Audi Classics 2012. It premières on 26 April till 20 May. Get your tickets from SISTIC. Prices start from $35 to $65 (for picnic seating) and $75 to $95 for Pavilion seating (includes two glasses of wine and canapés).
“If music be the food of love, play on…” Here’s what the stars of the show have to say…
So pack your picnic baskets and head down to Fort Canning for a fun-filled frolic in the park at the biggest picnic of the year.
Check back in and tell us what you think of the play.