Academic Success, Balance, Being a Puppet, Bilingual, Chinese Wayang stage, Choice, Choices, Collaboration Between the Chinese and English Language Theatre, Colloquial Terms, Compromise, Confucianism, Destiny, Dilemma, Expectations, Family, Family Pressure, Guilt, Hand Puppetry, Honour, Inner Conflict, Installation Art, Intergenerational Tensions, Jade Emperor, Kuo Pao Kun, Manipulation by Others, Martial Arts, Monkey God, Ninth Child, Obligations, Opera, Piggy, Power Play, Psychological Pressure, Puppetry, Sacrifice, Self-Examination, Shadow Puppetry, Singlish, Tai Chi, Tiger God, Western Liberalism, Worlds in Conflict, Zhang Gui,
Lao Jiu, the ninth child and only son of the family, is of outstanding intelligence and carries the hopes of his parents and siblings. Sacrifices are made by his family in the fond hopes that he will achieve the honour of academic success. Alas, to his family’s disappointment, he abandons his scholastic pursuits for his love of the traditional art form of hand puppetry.
First staged in English by TheatreWorks in 1993, Lao Jiu has performed to sell-out audiences in Singapore, as well as the Festival of Perth in 1994. This powerful and emotive work explores the issues of power play, psychological pressure, guilt, and the choice between family and one’s destiny.
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