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Preview: a line could be crossed and you would cease to be by Intercultural Theatre Institute


Following their devised production The Peculiar Tra La back in March, the newest graduating cohort of the Intercultural Theatre Institute (ITI) are back this September with yet another brand new play for their second production of the year.

Created by Australian playwright Andrew Sutherland, a line could be crossed and you would slowly cease to be plays at the Drama Centre Black Box from 5th to 7th September, and is set to explore the ever growing issue of climate change, as it excavates human relationships with other humans, animals and nature. As the weather changes, fishes die, beaches disappear and palm trees fall, a mother searches for a lost son, humans look for otters, and a merlion keeps track of change. Is it an inevitable timeline we’re following through, or a deadline of doom that we’re inching ever closer towards – a line that could be crossed…or one we already have.

Says playwright Sutherland: “This is a work that, for me, attempts to untangle difficult concepts of futurity and futurelessness against the imminent existential threat of climate futures. From the natural to the interpersonal, the play contends with the deep exhaustions and ambivalences of witness and memory. Without memory, we are unable to project ourselves into a future — but I believe, just as firmly, that hope and activism are predicated upon doubt, endless motion, and the inadequacy of ever reaching our goals. The play attempts to treat the concept of hope not as a stable future or as a passive act, but as Rebecca Solnit writes, “an axe used to break the door down”.”

a line could be crossed and you would slowly cease to be will be directed by Koh Wan Ching, who will lead the graduating cohort in this piece, comprising actors Earnest Hope Tinambacan, Jin Chen, Regina Toon, Ted Nudgent Fernandez Tac-an, Theresa
Wee-Yenko, Tysha Khan, Wendy Toh, and Nour el Houda Essafi (a.k.a. Yiseong). Says director Koh: “The Ministry of Environment and Water Resources features the following National Issues on its website: waste management and recycling, air quality, energy efficiency, water management and public health. The Ministry has also published a Climate Action plan in 2018, which sets out the main strategies of climate mitigation and adaptation. It remains to be seen how we would navigate the tensions between political and economic cost of mitigation and national goals for economic and population growth.”

She adds: “There is a gigantic contradiction between what needs to be done and our current terms of being in the world. This play is an attempt to investigate some of these complexities, and to investigate them with other human beings who will eventually congregate in a theatre. It is an ongoing process of research, experience and exploration that we hope will eventually lead to new paths of awareness and thinking.”

a line could be crossed and you would slowly cease to be plays from 5th to 7th September 2019 at the Drama Centre Black Box. Tickets available from Peatix


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