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Who’s There?

(2020)

Interactive Digital Performance; 1 hour and 40 minutes



A Black American influencer accuses a Malaysian bureaucrat of condoning blackface. A Singaporean-Indian teacher launches an Instagram feud calling out racial inequality at home, post-George Floyd. A privileged Singaporean- Chinese activist meets a compassionate White Saviour, and an ethnically ambiguous political YouTuber takes a DNA test for the first time.

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A cross-cultural encounter involving artists based in Singapore, Malaysia, the United States, and Hungary, Who’s There? uses Zoom as a new medium to explore the unstable ground between us and “the other”. In this pandemic contact zone, lines along race, class and gender bleed into one another, questioning the assumptions we hold of ourselves and the world around us. What sort of tensions, anxieties and possibilities emerge, and how can we work to reimagine a New Normal?

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Turning circumstance into choice, the performance took the ubiquitous Zoom platform not as tool but as material, confronting the affordances of the interface to address racial, emotional, and relational frustrations in this period of multiple crises.

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First Commissioned and Performed
2020 — New Ohio Ice Factory 2020 Festival
2020 — Programme Booklet

Features
2020 — New Yorker Banner Illustration

Analysis
2021 — "Zoom as Medium and Material"
2021 — Critical Stages Journal "Rehearsing 'Karen': The Dramaturgy and Politics of Cross-cultural Digital Theatre"

Reviews
2020 — Arts Equator: “'Who’s There?' and 'Two Songs and a Story'”
2020 — OnStage “Review: ‘Who’s There?’ at the New Ohio Theatre’s Ice Factory Festival 2020”
2020 — Bak Chor Mee Boy “Review: Who’s There? by The Transit Ensemble”

Credits
Co-Directed by Sim Yan Ying "YY" & Alvin Tan
Featuring: Camille Thomas, Ghafir Akbar, Neil Redfield, Rebekah Sangeetha Dorai eெரபகா சதா eடா*ர, Sean Devare, Sim Yan Ying “YY”
Dramaturgy by Cheng Nien Yuan & J.Ed Araiza
Multimedia Design by Jevon Chandra
Sound Design by Jay Ong
Publicity Design by Sean Devare
Stage Manager – Manuela Romero
Stage Management Intern – Priyanka Kedia
Marketing & Multimedia Intern – Ryan Henry
Interviews from S Rahman Liton & Janelyn, edited for length