Black Theatre Live



28 February 2018

Aurora Metro with Tara Arts and Goldsmiths University of London presents the SIGHT/UNSEEN DRAMA CONFERENCE on Thurs 26 and Fri 27 April 2018.

Amplifying Voices of Southeast and British East Asian Theatre Playwrights

The two day conference will provide a unique opportunity for people to explore and celebrate the plays of writers from both Southeast Asia and from the British East Asian community.


DAY 1 April 26th 2018 at Goldsmiths, University of London, Professor Stuart Hall Building, LG02

  • 9-10am Registration and Coffee
  • 10-10:15am Welcome address by Professor Mark d’Inverno, Pro-Warden (International Engagement), Goldsmiths, University of London (TBC), Gerald Lidstone, Representative of Asia Centre and Director of Institute for Creative and Cultural Entrepreneurship (ICCE), Goldsmiths, University of London (TBC), Dr Aleksandar Brkić, Lecturer, Goldsmiths, University of London, Cheryl Robson, Aurora Metro Books
  • 10:15-11am Keynote lecture Speaker TBC
  • 11-11:15am Coffee/Tea break
  • 11:15-12.00pm Panel: Challenging stereotypes Moderator: Margaret Coldiron (East 15 Theatre Conservatoire)
  • Panel: Kumiko Mendl, Daniel York Loh and others tbc
  • 12:00-1pm Panel: Southeast Asian plays and touring + extract from Tarap Man by Ann Lee
  • Chair: tbc. Panel : Joned Suryatmoko (Indonesia), Alfian Sa’at (Singapore/Malaysia), Asa Palomera (Korea/USA), Ann Lee (Malaysia)
  • 1-2pm Lunch break
  • 2-2:30pm Reading from Joned Suryatmoko’s play Piknik with students from East15, University of Essex
  • Directed by: Dr Margaret Coldiron ( (East 15 Theatre Conservatoire)
  • 2:30-3pm Piknik Q&A Session with Joned Suryatmoko
  • Chair: Professor Matthew Isaac Cohen, Royal Holloway, University of London
  • 3-3:30pm Coffee/Tea break
  • 3:30-4:30pm Panel: Issue of multiracial casting and cultural appropriation.+ reading from Frangipani by Chhon Sina (Cambodia) Moderator: Ashley Thorpe
  • Panel: Lucy Sheen, Daniel York Loh and others tbc
  • 4:30-5pm Wrap up and Announcements
  • 5-6:30pm Break
  • 6:30-8:30pm Book launch: “British East Asian Plays” by Aurora Metro Books
  • Speakers: tbc

DAY 2 - April 27th 2018 at Tara Theatre, London, 356 Garratt Lane, Earlsfield, SW18 4ES

  • 9:30-10am Registration
  • 10-10:15am Welcome by Jatinder Verma MBE, Artistic Director, Tara Theatre.
  • 10:15-11am Reading of extract from Joel Tan’s play Tango.Directed by Dr Margaret Coldiron
  • 11-11:15am Coffee/Tea break
  • 11:15-12pm Panel: Taboo subjects in Singapore and Malaysia.Moderator: Dr Aleksandar Brkić
  • Panel : Alfian Sa’at (Singapore), Ann Lee (Malaysia), Joel Tan (Singapore/UK)tbc, Asa Palomera (Korea/USA)
  • 12-12:15pm Coffee/Tea break
  • 12:15-1pm Panel: Retelling old tales in theatre + extract from Bound Feet Blues by Yang-May Ooi
  • Chair: Amanda Rogers, Senior Lecturer in Human Geography, Swansea University
  • Panel: Lucy Sheen and others tbc
  • 1-2:00pm Lunch break
  • 2:00-2.30pm Reading of extract from Alfian Sa’at’s The Optic Trilogy
  • Directed by Rebecca Goh, with students from Royal Holloway, University of London
  • 2.30-3.00pm + Q and A
  • 3:00-3.45pm Coffee/Tea break
  • 3.45-4:45pm Panel: Questioning the idea of a British East Asian playwright
  • Chair: Ashley Thorpe (Royal Holloway)
  • Panel: Lucy Sheen, Kumiko Mendl and others tbc
  • 5-6pm Networking session: Creating roots for collaboration
  • Chair: Jonathan Meth, The Fence network
  • Panel: tbc
  • 6-7pm Break
  • 7-8:30pm Reading of Asa Palomera’s The Prodigal Daughter of Korea
  • Directed by the author.
  • Q and A with the author.

Price - £25.00 for the 2 day event

The event will enable fresh discussion of the various issues affecting theatre-making in the UK and Southeast Asia with the aim of fostering greater mutual understanding and cross-cultural exchange.

​Aurora Metro Books published 'Southeast Asian Plays', the first comprehensive collection of plays in English from the region in 2016 and launched it at the National Gallery in Singapore. Aurora Metro is planning to publish a first collection of British East Asian Plays in the UK in 2018. By featuring playwrights from both collections, the Conference will provide an important platform for performance and discussion of their work, reflecting the increasingly important relationship between the UK and Southeast Asia.

The conference will involve discussion, workshops and performance.It will also provide opportunities for learning, new research and scholarship in an under-researched field.

Aurora Metro is collaborating with Goldsmiths University and Tara Arts on this project.Other associates include: East 15 Theatre Conservatoire, Regent’s Park University, Asia House, Royal Holloway University and The Fence.

You can also buy a ticket for 1 day only for £15.00. A number of tickets are available for students and other concessions at £15 for the 2 day event and evening playreading. Some free tickets also available. Contact [email protected] if you require a concessionary ticket or a 1 day ticket.