Fear of Writing
Tan Tarn How
The maestro of political plays is back and his latest offering in a decade, Fear of Writing, is a groundbreaking commentary with its finger on the political pulse of Singapore today.
In Fear of Writing, a playwright struggles with writer’s block, a director and producer bemoan their failure to get a government license to stage their play, and a father writes to his daughter overseas. Seemingly disparate elements are woven together, while the line between art, performance and reality begin to blur dramatically as the play reaches its chilling conclusion.
Fear of Writing is a play that will haunt you while compelling you to decide where you stand on the issues of control and censorship.
Written by Tan Tarn How, Fear of Writing was first staged by Theatreworks in 2011 to critical acclaim.
“[A]n important summation work at Tan's mid-point career. More than any other work in the Singapore canon, it questions the point and purpose of making theatre in Singapore.”
—Helmi Yusof, ‘The finest plays in 50 years’, The Business Times
“Fear of Writing is an urgent and courageous piece of work”
—Adeline Chia, The Straits Times
“A scathing indictment. It analyses the very act of writing itself and its limits.”
—Mayo Martin, TODAY
“One of the most intelligent and scathing dramas ever written about the machinery of Singapore politics and the individual capacity to be a force for change. Tan has produced the gravest and most compelling work of his 20-year playwriting career.”
—Clarissa Oon, The Straits Times
About the Playwright:
Tan Tarn How, senior research fellow at the Institute of Policy Studies, Singapore, graduated in 1982 from Peterhouse College, University of Cambridge with BA Honours in the Natural Sciences Tripos. He also has a Diploma in Education from Singapore’s Institute of Education. After teaching, he joined The Straits Times and from 1987-1996 was a political reporter, op-ed writer, arts deputy editor, and foreign correspondent in Hong Kong and Beijing. He left to be head scriptwriter for television drama and comedy at MediaCorp for about two years before returning to the newspaper in 1999 to be its science and technology editor, political correspondent and deputy news editor until 2005. He has also been the associate artistic director of the drama company Theatreworks, leading workshops for budding playwrights.
Size: 145 x 210mm
Published: April 2012
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