Give young playwrights time

I read with interest Corrie Tan's article, Theatre's Generation Gap (Life, July 7), where she mounted a well-argued defence for the millennial generation of writers.

I agree that it does take a lot of gumption, as she puts it, "generosity and honesty", for millennial writers to talk about themselves and their experiences as vital and relevant.

 The question is not mode but subject matter - are these selves and experiences interesting or noteworthy? 

Do they make you see things that have been hitherto hidden? Do they go beyond cliches and truisms?

  And when they do go beyond these limits, do they have a compatible artistry to present them vividly on stage?  I suspect the limits of the self go beyond just subject matter but stage craft: grasp of genre, form, dramaturgy and all those technical things that make for potent theatre. 

I would like to make a plea for the millennial generation - a plea for time. In this age of instant-everything, a writer's development and evolution may need a longer time. 

 Every generation gets it from the previous generation - criticism of how they are not as strong or they have it much better or they are "soft" from the good life. 

But one generation does not live in the same world as the next and thus has no right to tell the next generation how to live and, in this case, how to create theatre. 

Perhaps we need to step back and let the next generation do its thing.

Robin Loon

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 11, 2015, with the headline 'Give young playwrights time'. Print Edition | Subscribe