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ADN Re/View

ADN Re/View is a series of three E-zines which offer snapshots of the work of ADN, drawing from the transcripts of the presentations and dialogues that occurred at varied ADN events since 2016. Each volume of the E-zine features a selection of transcripts, which the editorial team worked with to extract, annotate and condense ideas.

Together, the E-zines are an assemblage of ideas about the kinds of thinking and talking that ADN has made happen, and communicates a sense of what dramaturgs in Asia have been doing and thinking. They are intended to continue discussions begun at past ADN events, and represent an early step towards making sense of and theorising Asian-based dramaturgies.

ADN Re/View is published by Centre 42, with support from the National Arts Council Singapore.

VOL. 2 (August 2021) NEW
    Click to download (7.8MB) - Updated 4 Oct 2021

ADN Re/View (Vol. 2) considers how ‘tracing’ offers a frame to work with when making sense of how dramaturgy affects our lives – in performance-making and in the everyday. In tracing the ways dramaturgs think about their work and articulate key approaches in their practice, we observe lines of connection and disruption, moments of synergy and separation.

    • Your Roots Are Showing: Asian Dramaturgies and (Hi)stories
    • Tracing a Story/Line
    • The Role of Dramaturgs in Asia
    • Attending to the 'Offensive': Dramaturgical Work in Theatre and in Life
    • On Dramaturgy and Body Politics
    • Ongoing Mapping

Join us on 4 October 2021, 8PM SGT, for an online discussion of ADN Re/View (Vol. 2)!
Practitioner-dramaturgs Gee Imaan Semmalar, Janice Poon, Helly Minarti and Kok Heng Leun engage in discussion as they respond to and unpack key points brought up in Vol. 2. < CLICK HERE TO REGISTER >

GEE IMAAN SEMMALAR is an activist, writer, theatre artist and filmmaker. He completed his postgraduate studies in Arts and Aesthetics from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. He cofounded Panmai Theatre group along with Living Smile Vidya and Angel Glady in 2014. The debut production of Panmai theatre, Colour of Trans 2.0, which was devised by the founders based on their own lives as trans people, toured many cities of North America and India. Gee directed one of the first films on trans men in South India, Kalvettukal [Sculptures] in 2012. In 2015, he co-directed and acted in a stop motion animation film, Won’t the Real Transformers Please Stand Up?. In 2016, he acted in a road trip experimental film called Naked Wheels which covered the issues of trans people. His most recent performance was a collaborative piece with Raju Rage (London-based artist) and Aryakrishnan R (Kerala based artist) at the Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2018. He uses art as a tool to explore identity, history, citizenship, caste and political action.

JANICE POON is Senior Lecturer (Playwriting and Dramaturgy) and Academic Project officer at the School of Drama, The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts. She is also the Artistic Director of Hong Kong Dramatists and a veteran theatre artist and cultural practitioner engaged in play-writing, directing, dramaturgy, curating and theatre-making with specific focus on contemporary dramatic text and dramaturgy in cross-disciplinary and cross-cultural theatre making. Her works have been presented in major cities in the UK, Europe, the US, Canada, China, Taiwan, Singapore and other regions in Asia. And Then, I Float was awarded four major awards, nominated for the best play award at the Hong Hong Theatre Libre (2014), and also invited as part of the cultural exchange project at the Schillertage festival in Mannheim, Germany (2015). Small Waisted (2016) won the Multi-cultural Short Plays Competition organised by the International Theatre Institute of UNESCO. Her curated project Dramaturgy and Beyond - Dance Dramaturgy series was nominated Outstanding Service Award at the Hong Kong Dance Award 2019.

HELLY MINARTI lives in Yogyakarta, independently working as scholar/curator with focus on performance, rethinking radical strategies to connect practice and theory. Her main interest is historiographies of choreography as discursive practice vis-á-vis the eclectic knowledge that infuses the intricate understanding of human body and nature. She has been engaged in various curatorial projects in Indonesia and overseas, the most recent was Jejak-旅 Tabi Exchange: Wandering Asian Contemporary Performance (2018-2021). Helly earned a Ph.D in dance studies from University of Roehampton (UK) and has been invited to guest-lecture in Indonesia and abroad whilst pursuing her own research.

KOK HENG LEUN is a prominent figure in the Singapore arts scene, having built his artistic career as a theatre director, playwright, dramaturg and educator. He is known for engaging the community on various issues through the arts, championing civic discourse across different segments of society. Having begun his work in the theatre almost 30 years ago, some notable directorial works include Drift , Trick or Threat, Manifesto and Underclass. His explorations with multi-disciplinary engaged arts has produced works like Project Mending Sky (2008, 2009 and 2012), a series on environmental issues, Both Sides, Now (2013, 2014 and 2017-2019), a project that seeks to normalise end-of-life conversations and It Won't Be Too Long, which touched on the dynamics of space in Singapore. His most recent work Tanah•Air 水•土:A Play In Two Parts was about the dispossession of the indigenous Malays and Orang Seletar of Singapore. Heng Leun's contributions to the arts have landed him awards from the Singapore National Arts Council – the Young Artist Award in 2000 and Cultural Fellowship in 2014. He also served as a Nominated Member of Parliament from 2016 to 2018, representing the arts sector.

Updated 4 Oct 2021: 
  • (p.124) Amended typo: "this identification" corrected to "disidentification".

VOL. 1 (June 2021)
    Click to download (8.5MB) - Updated 4 Sep 2021

Taking our cue from the very first ADN session titled Mapping the Terrain, which began with a discussion of how different Asian languages referred to ‘dramaturg’ , ADN Re/View (Vol.1) charts some of the key ideas that emerged and circulated about dramaturgy and dramaturging in Asia. 

    • Mapping the Terrain 
    • Expanding Dramaturgy 
    • The Liminal Role of a Dramaturg: Critical Questions for the Practice of Dramaturgy in Asia
    • Dramaturgs in Asia: Roles and Relationships 
    • Navigating Liminality and Dramaturging the ‘Inter’
    • Ongoing Mapping

Join us on 28 July 2021, 8PM SGT, for an online discussion of ADN Re/View (Vol. 1)!
Featuring practitioner-dramaturgs Peter Eckersall, Ness Roque and Nanako Nakajima, and led by Corrie Tan as provocateur-moderator, the online discussion will unpack key themes of tracing Asian dramaturgy, mapping the terrain and dramaturging the ‘inter’. < CLICK HERE TO REGISTER >

PETER ECKERSALL teaches at The Graduate Center, CUNY. Publications include Curating Dramaturgies (ed. with Bertie Ferdman, 2021), Machine Made Silence (ed. with Kristof van Baarle, 2020), The Routledge Companion to Theatre and Politics (ed. with Helena Grehan, 2019), New Media Dramaturgy (author with Helena Grehan and Ed Scheer, 2017), and Performativity and Event in 1960s Japan (2013). He was co-founder/dramaturg of Not Yet It’s Difficult. Recent dramaturgy includes Everything Starts from a Dot (Sachiyo Takahashi, LaMama), and Phantom Sun/Northern Drift (Alexis Destoop, Beursschouwburg, Riga Biennial).

NESS ROQUE is a theatre and film actor, performance dramaturg and educator. She was a core member of Manila-based contemporary performance company Sipat Lawin Ensemble (2009–2018). She is part of Prodjx Artist Community, an interdisciplinary collective integrating participatory art and research practices, community engagement, and education. Ness is a MEXT scholarship recipient and is currently a graduate student at the Tokyo University of the Arts - Graduate School of Global Arts (Department of Arts Studies and Curatorial Practices). She received an Honorable Mention-Elliott Hayes Award for Outstanding Dramaturgy 2018 from the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas (LMDA) for an essay on Sipat Lawin’s Gobyerno.

NANAKO NAKAJIMA is a scholar and dance dramaturg, and a Valeska Gert Visiting Professor 2019/20, at Freie Universitaet Berlin. Her dramaturgy work includes Mengfan Wang’s piece with aging dancers (2019) and Dance Archive Box Berlin (2020). Nanako received the 2017 Special Commendation of Elliott Hayes Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dramaturgy from the LMDA.

CORRIE TAN 陳霖靈 (she/her) is a President’s Graduate Fellow in Theatre Studies on the joint Ph.D. programme between King’s College London and the National University of Singapore. Both a practitioner and researcher, her work knits together care ethics, collaborative performance practices and new articulations of performance criticism in archipelagic Southeast Asia – taking up the commitment of a critic as collaborator, archivist, facilitator and shapeshifter, with an emphasis on care, intimacy and generosity. She is contributing editor and resident critic with the Southeast Asian arts platform ArtsEquator, and has also written regularly about theatre and performance for The Guardian, The Stage, Exeunt Magazine and The Straits Times. Corrie has also cultivated long-term critical writing and dramaturgical relationships with arts practitioners and groups in Singapore and the region.

Updated 2 Jul 2021: 
  • (p.84 & 85) Amended quote-out and text to clarify and correct erroneous information about the speaker (Sankar Venkateswaran).
  • (p. 113) Updated Sankar Venkateswaran's bio.
Updated 3 Jul 2021: 
  • (p.83, front & back cover) Corrected spelling of "dramaturhiya".
Updated 4 Sep 2021: 
  • Minor layout changes.

VOL. 3 (October 2021)

– Coming soon 

Editorial Team
Charlene Rajendran (Lead)
Daniel Teo
Chong Gua Khee
Dominic Nah

Design & Layout
Huang Suhuai