ST Forum: 'Gay' musical should have come with rating (Sept 1)

Saturday, September 1, 2007

ST Forum,
'Gay' musical should have come with rating
September 1, 2007

Recently, my family and I attended the Chinese musical, If There're Seasons..., by The Theatre Practice at the Drama Centre. By and large, it was a good production featuring various familiar songs written by local composer Liang Wern Fook.

While it was a good production, I was very disturbed by part of the story. One of the characters, Ah Qiang played by Sebastian Tan, turned out to have been jilted by his boyfriend in a homosexual relationship. His boyfriend then came back to woo Ah Qiang with love songs pledging his unending love, and even gave up his heterosexual marriage and his relationship with his parents, in order to be with Ah Qiang again.

Given that Ah Qiang was not the main character, and that the homosexual relationship was not even the main story, I wonder if it was necessary for them to be included.

I was even more disturbed because there were many schoolchildren, perhaps on an excursion trip, and families with young children among the audience. The children may not have the maturity to understand the implications of such a controversial subject.

When I checked the musical's website, as well as ticket-seller Sistic's website, there was no rating or information to warn audiences of the musical's content. No wonder there were so many children and families in the audience.

Perhaps this is an area the Censorship Board needs to look into.

Joseph Chia Yoong Leong