The Singapore Story

Set in the dark decade 1955-65, Singapura: The Musical depicts the untold stories of ordinary people who were part of the country's growth story

4/30/2015 2:56:07 PM
written By : Shobha Tsering Bhalla Print

Singapura: The Musical is set to give both Singaporeans and non-Singaporeans a new perspective on this little island nation. Directed by accomplished Filipino composer, arranger and music director Ed Gatchalian, Singapura takes the audience on a journey of new beginnings, hope, love and acceptance. The musical is set in Singapore’s formative years, primarily 1955 to 1965, and tells the republic's unique story through the eyes of ordinary men and women, while incorporating the pivotal efforts of the founding fathers – as well as how Singaporeans transcended the limitations of the land to arrive at the unique blend that makes it such a great nation.  

India Se: How did you come to be making a big Broadway musical about a small Asian country? 

Ed Gatchalian: All my life I wanted to come up with a musical that could attract West End and Broadway and I do believe that I would like to follow in the footsteps of two famous brothers in the 1900s. You see in the 1800s all opera was exported from Italy to the United States but in 1900 a couple of brothers - George and Ira Gershwin - decided to try their luck the other way and so they combined their talent with the librettist Dubose Hayward and produced the first American opera Porgie and Bess and the rest is history. Broadway became the musical centre of the world. Hold the laughter okay, we want to do something like that. When I invited the art director, production designer and lighting and projection designer from Broadway, our sound designer who is a Brit from South Africa who did Wicked, Phantom etc and told them about this, I realised we Asians have taken for granted the fact that the western world has a strange and silent fascination for Asian stories - Joy Luck Club, Miss Saigon, all of this. 

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