My Grandfather's Road 阿爺條路Organised by: Neo Kim Seng
Performed by: Karen Tan, Tan Cher Kian & Gary Tang
My Grandfather's Road is a theatre project of stories about growing up on a road called Neo Pee Teck Lane, along Pasir Panjang Road, named after the director and writer Neo Kim Seng's grandfather, until he moved out in 1973.
From piecing together his grandfather Neo Pee Teck's past from stories culled from photographs and his relatives to idyllic carefree childhood days to innocent observations of mortality; from Pasir Panjang to Changi; from family holidays to Penang to snippets of the history and policies of the changing times; the stories will be performed as monologues to look back at the past to reconnect with the present and vice versa. There will be two versions: Cantonese and English.
The Cantonese version comprises two monologues written and perfomed back-to-back by Tan Cher Kian and Gary Tang. Cher Kian's first person narrative will segue into Gary's storyteller version. With variations of the same stories, updated information and speculations, who is telling the truth or the real stories? The Cantonese text was written as a response to the original English text. This new version will be developed from the work in progress versions presented at Centre 42 in November 2017.
The English monologue will be performed by Karen Tan. This version will be based on the English text published in 2015 and will also include some new materials. This will be the premiere of the full-length English version of My Grandfather's Road.
My Grandfather's Road is not a nostalgia trip to reclaim heritage but conceived by Kim Seng as a project for the renewal of relationships with his family. Very often, we do not realise that our personal stories all contribute to create the social fabric we live in and make us who we are as a people because they ultimately form the story of our homeland.
My Grandfather's Road was first commission by Cake Theatrical Productions in 2015. The works in progress Cantonese versions presented as The Vault: My Grandfather's Road, a programme of Centre 42, was first performed in 2017 at Centre 42.
My Grandfather's Road
Performed in English by Karen Tan
Thu 14 & Sat 16 June 2018, 8pm
Fri 15 June 2018, 3pm
Performed in Cantonese by Tan Cher Kian & Gary Tang (with English surtitles)
Fri 15 June 2018, 8pm
Sat 16 June 2018, 3pm
Sun 17 June 2018, 2.30pm