Not too early in the year to start feeling existential

You probably spent a good part of December reflecting on and questioning the choices that have shaped your life thus far—and who’s to say you can’t continue doing so into the new year? As February comes around, so will the inevitable annual stressors that are Chinese New Year and Valentine’s Day. And instead of getting thrown for a loop by the incessant external questioning, might as well roll right with it and let your mind wander with the truly tough questions in life: Who am I? Where am I going? Why does any of this even matter?

Local theatre company Toy Factory Productions hopes to help you along with that. For their first play of the year running Feb 21-Mar 2, the company is turning an existing original script into a full-length theatrical production. The Transition Room was first staged as a dramatised reading at Toy Factory’s creative space in 2017, but this time will comprise a full cast and set for an immersive, experimental show.

For an hour and 15 minutes, get whizzed away on a journey of identity and existentialism as you follow protagonist Mike through a series of mysterious rooms—each one inhabited by a unique character. Waiting is a running theme here, moving from the physical act—in waiting rooms, or queuing for food—to the very philosophical state of being and subsistence. Fourth walls will be broken and absurdist elements will surface, in showcasing Associate Artistic Director and playwright Stanley Seah’s take on dealing with the fundamental questions about life.

The ensemble cast includes Toy Factory alum Marc Valentine Chia, together with fresher faces Victoria Chen, Hui Er Tan, Jazmine Monaz, Christer Jon Aplin and Kaykay Nizam. No promises you’ll leave with answers to those darned questions—but surrounded by fellow audience members at an existentialist play, you might feel a little less alone in your spiraling.


The Transition Room runs Feb 21-Mar 2 at Drama Centre Black Box, National Library Building. Tickets from $38. More information available here.