The Maker’s Forum brings together a group of stakeholders that contribute to the process of creating a puppetry performance, or a performance with objects.
Over the last nine months, our Maker – Loo An Ni, Physiotherapist Consultant – Choong Li Sann, Puppeteer Consultant – Oliver Chong, Researcher-educator – Liang Peilin and Programme Manager – Daniel Sim worked together to examine the designs and makes of puppets to become more sustainable for puppeteers, makers and creatives.
Building upon the consultation sessions, this forum is a critical reflection of our artmaking processes that seeks to answer the following questions:
- How can the process of performance-making be more sustainable through deepening the understanding of the roles of the puppeteers, makers and creatives?
- What should makers and designers be mindful of when making and designing for a puppetry performance, to ensure sensitivity towards the puppeteer’s or puppet’s movements?
- How can puppeteers and performers be better informed in the way they move and work with puppets?
Join us in creating a more sustainable practice.
Moderator: Myra Loke – Co-Artistic Director, The Finger Players
Myra Loke is a puppeteer, performer, educator, designer and theatre-maker. She co-conceptualised The Maker’s Lab.
She started her journey in Singapore’s theatre 13 years ago when she co-created and participated in ARTivate (Pioneer Batch), a youth wing of Drama Box Ltd.
Now, Myra is the Co-Artistic Director and a member of the core team of The Finger Players. She has since directed and led productions such as Peepbird (2020) and Little Mournings (2021, as part of The Maker’s Project). As an associate artist previously, she has performed and assisted in the design and making of puppets in OIWA – The Ghost of Yotsuya (Singapore International Festival of Arts 2021), Framed, By Adolf (2018), The Spirits Play (2015 & 2017), ITSY- The Musical (2017), The Flying Dutchman (2016), Turn by Turn We Turn (2014) and several others. Myra continues to contribute as a puppet designer and maker.
In 2017, Myra co-created “You Can Reach The Sky”, Singapore’s first immersive theatrical experience for babies. In 2018, Myra co-founded an arts collective, The Wanderlings, where she continues her work in engaging young people and people with special needs.
Panelist: Loo An Ni – Puppet Maker and Designer for The Maker’s Lab 2021/2022
Loo An Ni is fascinated with the tactility of objects and spaces. She studied product design in NTU School of Art, Design, and Media. While deciding what to do upon graduation she stumbled across theatre, and stayed for ten years. Every day is exciting as possibilities are limitless. She has taken various roles behind the scenes in various departments, such as costumes (design, construction, wardrobe management), set (design), and production (crew, operator).
She is excited to delve deeper into puppetry and props as it allows her to scrutinise every form and function of items used in the show, and study how humans factor into the equation between object and space.
Panelist: Daniel Sim – Programme Manager and Mentor to Selected Maker
Daniel is interested in objects in performance and the potential of their material and theatrical presence. He has designed, coordinated and/or made puppets, props and gadgets for shows such as Oiwa – The Ghost of Yotsuya (2021), The Son (2020), Urinetown The Musical (2019), The Great Wall: One Woman’s Journey (2017), and ITSY – The Musical (2017).
Daniel is a member of The Finger Players (TFP) Core Team. He helms The Maker’s Lab, a programme that focuses on research and development of puppet design and making.
Daniel is a co-founder of Prop-erly, where he fabricates puppets, props and other performance objects.
Panelist: Oliver Chong – Puppeteer Consultant and Director
The most recent winner of Best Actor at The Straits Times Life! Theatre Awards 2020 for A Fiend’s Diary, Oliver Chong is a multi-award-winning and published playwright, director, actor and designer. Some of his memorable works include A Fiend’s Diary, Roots, I’m Just A Piano Teacher, Cat, Lost & Found, The Book of Living and Dying, Citizen Pig and Citizen Dog. His numerous nominations at The Straits Times Life! Theatre Awards include Production of the Year and Best Director for I’m Just a Piano Teacher, Production of the Year for Off Centre, Best Director and Best Script for Citizen Pig, Best Actor for Roots, Invisibility/Breathing and Art, Best Supporting Actor for Itsy, the musical, Flare, Best Ensemble for Senang, Shit Hole, First Family, Rashomon, and A Cage Goes in Search of a Bird respectively, and Best Set Design for Twisted, Citizen Dog and A Fiend’s Diary.
Oliver was the Resident Director of THE FINGER PLAYERS (2004 – 2018), currently the core member of the company and also the founding member of A GROUP OF PEOPLE (2008 – 2012). He is the founder and Artistic Director of ODDCROP Productions (2019 – present). His published works include Roots, The Book of Living and Dying, I’m Just A Piano Teacher and Cat, Lost & Found.
Panelist: Choong Li Sann – Physiotherapist Consultant
Li Sann has been treating patients with acute and chronic spinal pain, sports injury, post-operation, repetitive strain or stress-related musculoskeletal problems since 2000. She’s passionate to help her patients to identify the mechanism of pain and problem solve with a biopsychosocial perspective.
Most of her patients presented with clinical conditions such as pain, reduced range of motion, loss of strength, lack of fascial mobility, post-op scar tissue restriction, poor posture and alignment, movement dysfunction and loss of functional mobility.
She takes an individualised and holistic approach using a mix of strategies including movement re-education, functional retraining, precision manual therapy involves soft tissue mobilization as well as neural and organ-related fascial manipulation techniques.
Her main goal is to facilitate body and movement awareness, and prescribe an effective home program for sustainability. She’s skilled in combine movements and guided touch to enhance mind-body connection, hopefully to restore the quality of life that enable her patients to serve their roles in family, workplace and community with great satisfaction. Nothing gratifies her more than being able to send patients back to their active pain-free lifestyle and armed with the skills to prevent injuries.
Panelist: Liang Peilin – Researcher-Educator
Liang Peilin is an ethnographer, practitioner, researcher, writer, and educator of theatre and performance. She studies storytelling through shapeshifting and the dynamics of cross-cultural exchange in relation to the performing body. Her recent research focuses on island perspectives, health and wellness, as well as the ergonomics of movement and object design in performance. Her most notable practice-as-research projects include “A Home on the Island” (2015-2019) and “Probody Artmaking Lab” (2021-present). She is the author of Bodies and Transformance in Taiwanese Contemporary Theatre (2020) and has published in Theatre Topics, Research in Drama Education, Contemporary Theatre Review, Theatre Research International and Performance Research, among other journals and edited collections. She is an associate professor of Theatre Studies at the National University of Singapore.
The Maker’s Project is supported by the Tote Board Arts Fund.
DATE & TIME
26 February, 2022
4.30pm – 6pm
Drama Centre Black Box Foyer