The Dollies ding-donged this writer’s bells

Temasek Review
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This opinion was spotted online and reproduced for your reading:


I have recently watched Crazy Christmas Ding-Dong-Bells (featuring the Dim Sum Dollies) and I must say I left the theatre with mixed feelings.

There was good humour and witty jokes – and there was plenty of these. What the audience also received was the usual fun poking at Government, their policies and PAP politicians.

Even the Prime Minister wasn’t spared.

Although it has now become somewhat expected of Singaporean theatre to employ satire, I’m wondering if these were really necessary. The funniest moments of the show wasn’t when actors made fun of Government. Judging by the laughter I heard, I think many would agree with me, at least in part.

It was very much more enjoyable when the Dollies or their crew simply let their talent and creativity fly. Take for example Sebastian Tan’s Hokkien jokes, or Vocaluptuous’ acapalla acts. The marketing material did not suggest there would be digs at Government or policies, they couldn’t have been counting on this to sell tickets either.

What is even more perplexing is that Selina Tan was in fact NDP 2013’s Creative Director. Meaning that she was involved, to some degree, in some of the processes she had just criticized satirically in theatre.

Without sounding like a prude, I honestly feel that poking fun at the G et al are low lying fruits and it doesn’t take real talent to get people to laugh at these things.

I’m just hoping that a day will come when thespians do not have to feel they have to do it as a default to be seen as credible.

Because they don’t have to.






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