Theatre needs its fair share of drama. An Indian woman breaks all the rules of tradition that her family holds dear to in her quest to be Westernised. A scientist who believes in the existence of a multiverse and melds her love life into it.
A musical adaptation of Yasmin Ahmad classic film Sepet, that broke new ground for local cinema and spoke to an entire generation of Malaysians. And let’s not forget a KL-based wind orchestra that is back to delight the masses with a concert series set in an old cinema building.
Here is a list of theatre, music and arts performance this month not to be missed:
When The Dark Hits Me
Where: KongsiKL, Jalan Klang Lama, KL
When: Sept 5-8
When The Dark Hits Me is inspired by the late British contemporary playwright Sarah Kane’s work 4.48 Psychosis. There is no specific plot in this play, which is a type of stream of consciousness drama. The main story is about a mental illness patient’s inner struggle. He is surrounded by medical staff all day long. In the process, he has not been really understood. This is his sincere confession to the world, conveying his love to people in an extremely cruel way. This show, to be held in the repurposed warehouse space of KongsiKL, is a graduation production by New Era University College’s Department of Drama & Visuals. Show is in Mandarin with English surtitles. FB: When The Dark Hits Me.
Where: Pentas 1, KLPac
When: Sept 6-8
This year marks the Singapore Dance Theatre’s (SDT) 10th year performing at KLPac with its Ballet Illuminations series. Start the evening with one of renowned Russian-born American choreographer George Balanchine’s classics called Serenade. Considered a milestone in the history of dance, Serenade is the first original ballet Balanchine created in the United States in 1934 and is one of the signature works of New York City Ballet’s repertory. Balanchine’s 1947 work Theme And Variations is also part of the programme. Finally, the full SDT company will perform Timothy Harbour’s Linea Adora, which was made for the SDT’s 30th anniversary season in 2018. This show will also play PenangPac on Sept 13-15. More details: www.klpac.org.
Harmoniemusik II – All Time Favourites
Where: REXKL, Jalan Sultan, KL
When: Sept 7 and 8
Philharmonic Winds of Malaysia (PWM), formed in 2016, is a wind orchestra founded by a group of passionate musicians based in Kuala Lumpur. This orchestra, made up of professional orchestra members, jazz soloists, freelance musicians, music educators, and tertiary music students, specialises in transcriptions of classical symphonic pieces. Here’s where classical, contemporary, film and pop music meet. PWM’s long-awaited Harmoniemusik series is finally back after a successful full-house debut (Volume I – Timeless Journey) last year. This month, PWM will present a range of wind band works by Jan Van Der Roost, James Barnes, Daisuke Shimizu, Satoshi Yagisawa, Maxime Aulio, Jacob De Hann and others. FB: Philharmonic Winds of Malaysia.
Where: Blackbox, DPAC, Petaling Jaya
When: Sept 12-15, Sept 19-22
Is there such a thing as a multiverse? You know, different versions of a person living different lives or maybe the same life, but with endless outcomes. Well, that’s what Marianne, a physicist, believes. When she meets Roland, a beekeeper, at a party and romance ensues, it seems likely that the multiverse may exist. Or at least, that is how English playwright Nick Payne paints it in his two-hander play Constellations. This Malaysian staging of Constellations, features Dominic Lucien Luk and Amelia Chen. It is directed by Abdul Qahar Aqilah. Go on a journey with Marianne and Roland as they discover how even the smallest change in life can dramatically alter things. FB: Constellations By Nick Payne.
Sepet The Musical
Where: GMBB, 2 Jalan Robertson, KL
When: Sept 19-22, Sept 26-29
British-Malaysian production house Liver And Lung, which staged Malaya Relived: The Fall Of Singapore early this year, is bringing another new work to the stage. And it is none other than a musical adaptation of Yasmin Ahmad’s acclaimed Sepet. Populist or not, Sepet The Musical promises to lead audiences down memory lane, with themes surrounding poignant relationships, young love and the futility of the boundaries that divide our society. Joshua Gui and Badrika Bahadur will play the roles of Jason and Orked respectively. FB: Liver and Lungs Production.
YKLS Sings The Great American Songbook featuring WVC Jazz Ensemble
Where: Pentas 2, KLPac
When: Sept 19-22
It’s time to revisit the golden age of American jazz music with Young KL Singers (YKLS) and the acclaimed WVC Jazz Ensemble. Think favourites and jazz standards from the 1920s to the 1950s, made popular by Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles, Nat King Cole and Duke Ellington. To jazz up the night, Pentas 2 will be transformed into a cosy, almost living room-like setting. The audience will also be allowed to move around. And yes, if you feel like dancing, just go ahead. The pop-up dancefloor space will be waiting. More details: www.klpac.org.
Love Take It Slow
Where: Kotak, Five Arts Centre, Taman Tun Dr Ismail, KL
When: Sept 20-22
Here’s an original devised theatre performance by writer/director Remy Eldhani. It is divided into five parts. Each part features a poetry verse that is tied closely to the lives and stories of three pairs of very different people. The show is performed primarily in Bahasa Malaysia, but don’t be surprised by small doses of English and Mandarin. This show is presented by Rumah Lakon and The Geng Jahat. FB: Rumah Lakon.
Alice In The Antipathies
Where: Blackbox, DPAC
When: Sept 26-29
Alice In The Antipathies is a multidisciplinary play written and designed by Sasi Victoire, a multimedia artist/author based in Cairns, Queensland, Australia. It is presented by Australia-based Jute Theatre Company and Malaysia’s Masakini Theatre Company. Featuring Malaysian actors Sukania Venugopal, Phraveen Arikiah and Sabera Shaik and Australian Roz Pappalardo, the staging will be based on the kavad storytelling device. Originating from Rajasthan, India, kavad is a 3D storytelling device that uses an unfolding box that reveals pictures episodically to tell a particular tale. Alice In The Antipathies tells the story of Asha, a second-generation Indian born in Malaysia. She finds herself unable to conform to her cultural settings and to be a dutiful daughter. But when she is sent to Australia to study, she embraces Western life and culture, and breaks more traditional rules … much to her mother’s consternation. FB: Alice In The Antipathies.