Mu­si­cal The­atre:

Made fa­mous by hit movie Flo­rence Fos­ter Jenk­ins, star­ring Meryl Streep and Hugh Grant, heart­warm­ing play Sou­venir de­buts here next month. Sin­ga­porean di­rec­tor SA­MAN­THA SCOTT-BLACKHALL tells us more.

Expat Living (Singapore) - - Contents -

Our chat with the di­rec­tor of Sou­venir

How did you get into di­rect­ing?

I’ve al­ways had a pas­sion for the­atre. My mother was a the­atre pro­ducer with the now de­funct the­atre com­pany Stars. In school, I was in the drama club and choir. I pur­sued drama as a sub­ject in sec­ondary school and as a Higher Level sub­ject for IB where I di­rected a play ti­tled Ernie’s In­cred­i­ble Il­lu­ci­na­tions by Alan Ay­ck­bourn. I was amazed by the big pic­ture and var­i­ous el­e­ments of putting a show to­gether. At that point, I de­cided to fur­ther my stud­ies in drama and di­rect­ing.

What’s been your favourite pro­duc­tion to date?

All my pro­duc­tions are like chil­dren to me. They They’re re unique and mem­o­rable for dif­fer­ent ffer­ent rea­sons, so I find it hard to choose just one! To name a few, I love The Physi­cist for its fall­ing wall and d chore­ographed can­dle light­ing scene, Quills for its in­tense e jour­ney based on the prison time of Mar­quis de Sade and Agnes of God for work­ing with Christina Sergeant and Karen Tan. All my pro­duc­tions are a labour of love!

Tell us a bit about the cast­ing of the show.

Hos­san Leong is ab­so­lutely per­fect t for the role of Cosme. Be­sides be­ing a highly ta­lented alented ac­tor with per­fect comic tim­ing and wit, he can play the piano, sing and, if needed, dance nce at the same time!

I was rack­ing my brain to think hink of some­one who can sing (opera, no less!) and have the act­ing chops to pull off such a com­pli­cated and sen­si­tive role as Flo­rence Fos­ter Jenk­ins. Leigh Mcdon­ald d is su­perbly ta­lented both as a singer and ac­tress. Be­lieve me, it takes a very gifted singer to sing badly! She does not live in Sin­ga­pore any­more, so I emailed her to ask; she replied, “Life is funny; only to­day, the film about Flo­rence came on, and my un­cle and I said we’d love to watch it. Yes, I’m def­i­nitely in­ter­ested!”

What’s the main mes­sage of the play?

It’s not about how well – or how badly, in this case – some­one can sing. It’s about the pas­sion to do so. It’s about hav­ing a dream and pur­su­ing it at all costs. Hos­san’s char­ac­ter says some­thing to the ef­fect of, “It’s the mu­sic in your head that mat­ters…” This idea, to me, will res­onate well af­ter the play ends.

In 10 words or less, what can the­atre­go­ers ex­pect from Sou­venir?

A lot of laughs and a lot of soul.

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