Readers get to pick best play


What was your favourite theatre production of 2014?

Cast your vote for the Production of the Year (Readers' Choice) award at the M1-The Straits Times Life! Theatre Awards and you could win passes to the awards ceremony, theatre tickets and a weekend stay at the loft-inspired designer hotel, Studio M Hotel Singapore.

The trio of productions up for the readers' choice award are: Art by Nine Years Theatre, Monkey Goes West by Wild Rice and The Rise & Fall Of Little Voice by Pangdemonium.

Art is a keenly observed comedic take on three friends squabbling over what makes art. The Chinese adaptation of Yasmina Reza's popular French comedy has five nominations.

Monkey Goes West, Wild Rice's annual pantomime, is a musical reimagining of the Chinese classic Journey To The West, with a dollop of local flavour. The production is up for six awards.

The Rise & Fall Of Little Voice follows a young, shy singer as she discovers more about her talent and herself on her journey to stardom. The production has bagged three nominations.

The Production of the Year (Readers' Choice) award is based entirely on public votes, unlike Production of the Year, a separate award decided by a panel of judges.

The annual awards, now in their 15th year, honour the best shows and performances in local theatre and will be given out on April 20 at the Esplanade Recital Studio.

Telecommunications company M1 has come on board for the awards as title sponsor and the event is held in collaboration with Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay.

Public voting for the Production of the Year (Readers' Choice) award begins today and will be open until March 29. Readers who take part in the voting will be entered in a lucky draw. Ten winners will each receive a pair of tickets to the awards ceremony.

They will also each receive a pair of tickets to one of five Friday evening shows which are part of the Esplanade's The Studios: fifty series, which features 50 seminal Singapore plays.

The productions are: Emily Of Emerald Hill, The Weight Of Silk On Skin, Off Centre, Descendants Of The Eunuch Admiral and The Lady Of Soul And Her Ultimate "S" Machine. The shows will take place from April 3 to May 8.

Ms Yvonne Tham, assistant chief executive officer of The Esplanade, says that The Studios: fifty hopes to "celebrate our short but rich history of playwriting and theatre-making", and that giving away tickets will allow readers to join in the celebration.

One lucky reader among the 10 winners will walk away with the grand prize, a weekend stay at Studio M Hotel Singapore near Mohamed Sultan Road.

The prize is sponsored by Millennium & Copthorne Hotels and includes breakfast as well as a wine and waffle experience at the hotel's deli cafe, MeMo.

Mr Aloysius Lee, CEO of Millennium & Copthorne Hotels, says: "We hope to do our part in raising the profile of local thespians and productions. The Production of the Year (Readers' Choice) award is a good way to reach out and engage readers of The Straits Times."

This article was first published on Mar 18, 2015.
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