In 1999, The Necessary Stage worked with Singapore’s first openly HIV-positive person Paddy Chew to devise a monologue titled Completely With/Out Character, depicting Paddy’s experiences. Though well received, Paddy passed on a few months after the production, and few works since have so openly dealt with the condition of living with HIV.
More than a decade later, Loo Zihan revisits the work, reinterpreting Paddy’s monologue and reconceptualising the work in an all new production starring Janice Koh. Re-examining the original piece in conjunction with archived content and new material, With/Out first premiered at the 2015 M1 Singapore Fringe Festival to rave reviews, and returns to the stage at the Esplanade Theatre Studio.
Weaving together a multimedia experience and heartfelt emotion, Loo Zihan and Janice Koh manage to both look back on Paddy’s experiences and his performance, and bring it to the present day as well, relating it to our contemporary experiences. Be sure to check it out during the Esplanade’s The Studios 2017 Season this March.
With/Out plays at the Esplanade Theatre Studio from 23-26 March. Tickets available here