With/Out (2017)

Performance from 23 to 26 March 2017, 8pm
Esplanade Theatre Studio

Conceptualised by Loo Zihan
Performed in collaboration with Janice Koh

Based on Completely With/Out Character (1999)
Devised by Paddy Chew, in collaboration with Alvin Tan and Haresh Sharma
A commission by The Studios, Esplanade Theatres on the Bay

“Chew, the first person in Singapore to come out as HIV-positive, flickers back to life in a production that is a reading, a screening, an installation and a documentary all at once… that allows audience members to revisit an iconic production with the sobering measure of distance and a thorough context." - Corrie Tan, The Straits Times, on With/Out (2015)

In 1999, The Necessary Stage presented Completely With/Out Character, a docu-theatre monologue devised by Paddy Chew, in collaboration with playwright Haresh Sharma and director Alvin Tan. The monologue was a candid account of Paddy’s experiences as the first individual to come out as a person living with HIV in Singapore. Unfortunately, Paddy passed on a few months after the end of the production. Since then, although medical advancements now allow HIV-positive individuals to lead relatively normal lives, the ignorance and prejudice surrounding AIDS still remains pervasive today.

With/Out is an interpretation of Paddy’s monologue, conceptualised by performance and moving-image artist Loo Zihan. It was first presented in 2015 to rave reviews as part of the M1 Singapore Fringe Festival. This 2017 commission by Esplanade Theatres on the Bay -The Studios series presents a reimagining of this monologue, and examines its relationship to the written and video documents.

Through the use of archived content and new material created by Loo Zihan, in collaboration with award-winning performer Janice Koh, With/Out weaves together a multimedia experience that not only preserves our collective memory of Paddy’s monologue, but also relates it to our contemporary experience.

With/Out was first developed in residence at Centre 42, and commissioned by the M1 Singapore Fringe Festival in 2015.

Visit www.facebook.com/withoutpaddy for an archive of the development of the production.