In a new episode of the That's Life podcast, renowned Singaporean playwright Haresh Sharma, resident playwright with The Necessary Stage theatre company, tells the story of how he became a playwright and where he finds his inspiration after 30 years in the industry.
Plays which are written and produced in Singapore are unlike any other plays in the world, he says, and they enjoy a unique level of freedom of content and creativity.
"Not everything is allowed but enough is allowed that we are still interested to create new work, and enough is allowed that audiences keep coming back because the audience know that the kind of depth that we go into and the kinds of sensitivities that we deal with in our characters and our narrative will never be discussed in mainstream media," he says
"The difference is that one, we are very much writing about Singapore and Singapore in the context of Asia and the context of the world... it's very much about our psyche, our ways of expressing ourselves, our ways of understanding one another, and that for me is the main difference between our theatre and theatre from other countries," he says.
"Sometimes people say it is very parochial, but the thing is we have not had much of an opportunity to have our voices heard, to interrogate our history ... it is important to do that kind of writing, that kind of excavation."
For more from That's Life, go to soundcloud.com/straitstimes.