Interdisciplinary

 

1998 - Postmodern Elements of Theories and Practice

Short Description
Too Many Cooks Spoil The Soup? The Pitfalls of Collaboration and Lessons Learnt
Alvin Tan

Collaboration "is a recognition of the high status and artistic quality of partner" (Hughes, 1996:10). S/he must use his/her discipline's vocabulary to initiate and improvise in an exploratory manner so that the artistic team can better decide if what is proposed can contribute to the work. Problems/limitations usually challenge an artist's creativity. In a non-hierarchical arrangement, when a collaborator disagrees with a director, s/he must assert his/her stand; affecting rather than interpreting the director's vision. [...]

In transforming how artists relate to one another in a less hierarchical structure, the traditional roles should be allowed to remain. The paradigm shift is to open up other possible working methods. For example, Sharma's initial notion of empowering actors was to impart some playwriting skills/rules to enable them to author their own character's dialogue or scenarios. He has since shifted to watching and learning the ways actors use their bodies to express their character's motivations in physical performance. He has begun working closely with a choreographer. He has struggled to understand and appreciate how a performance score can work alongside literary text and have just sat back during physical improvisations and allowed the created images to speak to him. In not knowing the briefs, what he observed may be far from or close to an actor's intention. But more importantly the experience have inspired new working paradigms for him; how to write word-texts that would supplement the visual and/or performance texts. Sharma's style of writing and not his role has changed.
 

1999 - BrainStorm

Short Description
Alvin Tan

It is my hope that BrainStorm is an environment where we can learn together what we need to unlearn and what we can teach ourselves—how we can re-imagine the way we work, the way we see, the visions we set out for ourselves. BrainStorm is also a site for contesting views so that we take sparring partnerships as constructive means to develop rather than compete with one another. And perhaps that is the crux of the whole project—that we artistically and critically share in a social space that is not determinate nor judgmental to engender new forms.
 

2000 - Imagined Boundaries

Short Description
In what ways have a diversity of artists been able to situate themselves in the Imagined Boundaries project?—A playwright's perspective.

Chong Tze Chien: Sometimes, I think that being a playwright is not all that different from being an installation artist. One works with a text composed of words and the other works with a text composed of visuals. At times, these texts conflate into a whole, each part of a larger design. This is what happens whenever I "dabble" in installation works myself.
 

2000 - Under the Last Dust

Short Description
Artistic Director's Message

DUST is an exploratory piece of work. When we asked Jean what she would like to do for her 2000 slot, she said a piece of work that has no or little literary text. She would like to use non-literary devices to structure and "write" a piece. We were excited with the proposal. Then came the content—what should she like to explore and why employ the non-literary approach? [...]

Haresh and I watched rehearsals and had many hours of discussion with both Jean and Jing Hong. I learnt a few things from these discussions. How do we employ playwriting principles but use other mediums for inspiration and as vocabulary to "script" a work. In creating an open work, we are challenged to be even more precise when we craft the work.
 

2001 - M1 Youth Connection 2001

Short Description
M1 Youth Connection 2001
Alvin Tan

For this festival, we have set ourselves the task of reaching out to artists in other fields. If more youths begin to see how the other art forms can also be in a theatre festival, perhaps a fusion or integration of the forms will come about in a more evolutionary way. After all, we need more events that suggest multi-disciplinary works. Building the environment where different artists can begin to interact is not an easy one and should not be underestimated. So hopefully in M1YC 2001, we will continue the interaction of artists from different fields.
 

2004 - Ask Not

Short Description
Second-Generation Artists 1: Chong Tze Chien

Tze Chien: The participants of BrainStorm (what’s that in your head?), which Lift was part of, were given free rein in where we wanted to stage our works. The production manager brought me on a survey of the Museum’s premise about four months before the production. I was looking for a challenging space to work with, and when I saw the lift, I thought staging a play inside would be rather exciting. […]

The lift itself was run-down, cranky and loud. Even though it was big enough to fit a car inside, it lent itself to a very ominous and claustrophobic atmosphere. When its double-layered doors were shut, one felt as though one was sealed in a tomb. Immediately the theme of entrapment surfaced. The location of the lift also suggested something marginalised, existing at the underbelly of gloss that permeates the rest of the Museum and its art galleries. I thought of a cabaret and its performers, and how they are artists working with an art form that requires no less discipline and craft than other art forms, but is deemed as fluff entertainment like clowns in a circus, not taken seriously. But from that, it also earns its characteristics of irrelevance, satiric stance and acerbic humour. But I don’t think any curator in any museum in the world would invite a cabaret act into their premises. Refused entry, rejected and hidden. I thought of a transvestite: physically trapped; an illegal immigrant: geographically bound; and an individual: spiritually dislocated—fighting to get out of the country. With each character, the theme of entrapment was reflected and fleshed out. And Lift My Mind was born.
 

2008 - Frozen Angels

Short Description
Brief Notes On The Process

Frozen Angels underwent an interdisciplinary process. We started by reading a lot of articles related to stem cell issues, attending talks and interviewing key experts from Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine's Centre for Biomedical Ethics. [...]

We then started exploring various permutations of the three narratives, and how they could be presented. We worked both in the Black Box—exploring form and content—and outside—filming and creating new materials. By the end of February, we had a first draft of the interdisciplinary composition. The next two weeks we reviewed the first raft, had more discussions and exploration and recomposed the work for the final week of rehearsal.
 

2014 - Gitanjali

Short Description
Dramaturg's Message
Charlene Rajendran

In the making of a devised performance, the work of negotiation and listening is immense—especially when incorporating the varied demands of a classical literary text, traditional performance forms, contemporary dance, experimental soundscape, multi-media technology, and the varied imaginations of performers who stem from wide ranging histories of theatre, culture, politics and artistic training. It entails being able to trust the process and believe in the purpose, even when it remains unclear what the outcome will be. It requires generosity of spirit, critical responsiveness, tenacity and patience, artistry and curiosity, hope and heart—amid lengthy improvisations and rehearsals that pull and push the performer to generate material, learn new vocabularies, take risks and keep playing.
 

2015 - TOP Showcase 1

Short Description
In 2014, The Necessary Stage launched The Orange Playground (TOP), a creative research and development programme for emerging and established artists. [...]

TOP 2015 will be all about artistic explorations amongst disciplines. We are dedicating more time to processing the interaction of different disciplines to discover new forms and vocabularies. usually, the explorations happen within a production's time frame. We have discovered that we need more time to do so and hence the different focus for TOP 2015.
 

2016 - Ghost Writer

Short Description
Dramaturg's Notes
Charlene Rajendran

Several phases of improvisations and devising took place in this collaborative and interdisciplinary performance, allowing for the artists to learn about one another's working processes and philosophies As they figured out how to play with the many possibilities of interacting through their particular mediums, they also challenged each other by raising questions about what it means to bring together their disciplines, training methods, aesthetics and politics.