The solution may just be to take cross-cultural representation to a whole new stage.
From 18th to 21st October, Pentas Project Theatre Production is presenting a trilingual version of The Tragicomedy of Errors which is an authorised adaptation of Secret Love in Peach Blossom by Taiwan’s Performance Workshop in an effort to encourage a more diversified performance and visual art. This classic production directed by Loh Kok Man unfolds a poignant story of two theatre companies muddled in a mix-rehearsal with one another when they were forced to work in one place and at the same time due to the mismanagement of the theatre personnel.
One group rehearses the play, Secret Love about an interracial relationship in turmoil and separated by borders during the modern history; the partner longing for his lost love as he clings to the end of his life whereas the other company is trying to stage the play, Peach Blossom Land about the trespass of an anxious and depressed fisherman into the territories of the Peach Blossom Land and he tries to find his way home and away from the retched isolation.
Secret Love will be taking on the Malay adaptation by Fasyali Fadzly with a cast that includes Lenna Lim, Anwar Rusdini, Anna James and many more while Peach Blossom Land will retain its original Chinese interpretation and stars Yeo Lyle, MayJune, Leow Hui Min and Jet Lew. A display of diversity can be seen through the three languages (English, Chinese and Malay) performed, as well as the cross-border collaboration from theatre, TV and film industries, in the portrayal that omits and preserves our Malaysian identity.
The parallels between these different stories on the same stage will be equipped with designated interruptions and will reveal the complimentary battle of a play within a play in which the characters’ conflicts and expectations are mirages of each other. The core of this production is the measure of the next steps in breaking language barriers of the theatre scene by waving away the illusion of anything that is foreign. Director, Loh Kok Man stated, “Every time we do a performance, we’re unsure how the audience would respond so for us it is actually very exciting to curate the different responses every time a production ends.”
The Tragicomedy of Errors will take place at Pentas 1, Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre from 18th to 21st October.
Featured Image source: Checkmate Creative.