The Impending Storm: The Silly Little Girl And The Funny Old Tree
The Silly Little Girl and the Funny Old Tree live in a fantastical and topsy-turvy world. The original story by Kuo Pao Kun tells of a Funny Old Tree with leaves growing from where its roots should be, yet it somehow attracts the affection of a Silly Little Girl. However, the appearance of a bulldozer destroys the tranquility and the Funny Old Tree is due to be felled…
Guest Director Fu Hong Zheng engages in a dynamic-re-telling of this classic text. Fu places a family’s tragic affairs at the front and centre: A family struggling to care for a father with dementia, which unfolds a series of human struggles that bubble under the surface. By using the Old Tree as a symbol for the elderly in today’s society, the play utilises magical realism as the vehicle to present the juxtaposition of several themes: indifference versus passion, brutality versus tenderness, inertia versus determination, as well as the intangible versus the tangible.
By interlacing movement, song and text, Fu creates a poetic, yet moving landscape of what The Silly Little Girl and Old Tree may allude to in modern times.
Beyond the allegory. Beyond the fairy-tale.
Date: 6 – 16 September 2012
Venue: School of the Arts Singapore | Studio Theatre
Festival: Kuo Pao Kun Festival 2012
Director: Fu Hong Zheng
Original script: Kuo Pao Kun
Set Designer: Dorothy Png
Lighting Designer: Gabriel Chan
Sound Designer: Sandra Tay
Costume Designer: Theresa Chan
Cast: Ang Xiao Ting, Alvin Chiam, Joanna Dong, Zachary Ho, Melissa Leung Hiu-Tuen, Liu Xiao Yi, Rei Poh
This makes an interesting revival where the director and the production are brave enough to take the work of a ‘classic’ playwright and tune it to current taste and current issues. In this sense, unlike many London revivals of classics, this artistic freedom and creativity are worthy of praise.