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3 Reasons The M1 Peer Pleasure Theatre Festival Beats Watching Yet Another Movie

M1 Peer Pleasure – the best of Singapore’s youth art scene


M1 Peer Pleasure Youth Theatre Festival Line-up 

Source: ArtsWok Collaborative

Ah, theatre. Some of us budding thespians have got fond memories of budget drama club productions, while others still have trouble spelling Shakespeare (it’s a struggle – did I get it right?).

But wherever on the theatre spectrum you may be, there’s one place for everyone to come together – the M1 Peer Pleasure Youth Theatre Festival.

Happening from 22nd July – 5th August at Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay, M1 Peer Pleasure is back for its 3rd edition. From poignant plays to workshops, it’s bigger and better than before. Here are 3 reasons why you should check out this year’s festival:  


1. It’s a platform for young artists to collaborate with a cause


Young Artists in Singapore 

As an annual showcase for youth theatre in Singapore, M1 Peer Pleasure is a platform for emerging young artists with a social conscience – giving them an opportunity to stage performances that shine some light on important issues that society tends to keep rather mum about – like race, religion and even suicide.

In fact, the plays are so edgy, they’ve been given advisories for dealing with such mature themes. So buckle up – you may leave the theatre with a whole new way of looking at the world.

What Has Race Got To Do With It?


2. Watch Singaporean stories come to life on stage


As I ease into the great age of Young Adulthood, the not-so-great perception people have of millennials being disengaged becomes clearer. Thankfully, Peer Pleasure is all about breaking stereotypes: by showcasing a wide range of original works created by young people, the festival aims to communicate their unique perspectives on relevant social issues in Singapore today.

Here’s a taste of what’s on offer:


Without Reason


 Without Reason, a play about race and love in Singapore

An average Singaporean love story – or is it?

Relationships are tough. But when cultural differences and societal expectations are thrown into the mix, it’s a whole new ballgame. Without Reason explores the challenges faced by a Chinese girl and Malay boy as they overcome the obstacles of being in an interracial relationship, and go on a grand quest for love and identity.  

Without Reason 

Location: Esplanade Theatre Studio
Duration: 1.5 hours, followed by a 30 minute post-show discussion
Date: 2nd Aug (Wed), 3PM | 3th-4th Aug (Thur, Fri), 3PM and 8PM
Price: $20 (excluding $1 SISTIC fee)

(Advisory 16 – Some mature content)

Tickets are available from SISTIC and Esplanade Box Office


Triple Bill: A 3-in-1 performance


Nonsense, a play by the Down Syndrome Association of Singapore

“What we take as nonsense may sometimes be beauty and hope”

Devised by the Down Syndrome Association of Singapore, Nonsense tells a story about refugees, war and hope, and is an original piece performed by young actors with special needs.

Watch director Jean Ng explain what went on behind the scenes:

Performed alongside Nonsense are The Box, a play about the influence of social media performed by St Anthony’s Canossian Secondary, and How Did I Mess Up This Bad: An Analysis by UNSAID, a crowdsourced dark comedy about the taboo topic of mental illness and the stigma that comes along with it.

Triple Bill

Location: Esplanade Recital Studio
Duration: 2 hours, followed by a 30 minute post-show discussion
Date: 1st Aug (Tue), 4th Aug (Fri) – 7.30PM | 2nd Aug (Wed) and 3rd Aug (Thu),  2.30PM
Price: $20 (excluding $1 SISTIC fee)

Advisory (Some Mature Content)

Tickets are available from SISTIC and Esplanade Box Office


3. Engaging workshops to satisfy theatre junkies


If you’re itching to be more than just part of the audience, the festival’s got a line-up of programmes for those looking to get hands-on and delve deeper into the world of the arts:


Community Dialogues


My Mother Say Art No $$$$$ by UNSAID

Source: UNSAID

The choice of pursuing an arts career in Singapore might raise a slew of questions, with the most relatable sentiment being: “can make money meh?” And as its name suggests, My Mother Say Art No $$$$$ is an exchange about just that.

But there’s still hope – find out how youths can get involved in theatre as a career, and what it takes to keep it sustainable over time.

Members of the public can also gain insight into what goes on behind the scenes when working with special needs actors in Holding Space For The Other, or learn from practitioners how to balance craft and content when creating socially engaged work in Staging Social Issues.

Date: 2nd, 3rd and 5th Aug (Wed, Thur, Sat)

Note: All community dialogues are open to the public and are free. Check out all programme timings here.


M1 Theatre Ninja Programme



Providing production training and mentorship is the M1 Theatre Ninja Programme, a theatre workshop that gives youths hands-on exposure to production and stage management. Participants get to put their newfound skills into action with precision and efficiency during festival week, working in the shadows to put up a production with devastating impact.


An Introduction to Devising Workshop by The Necessary Stage


Fans of local theatre would be no strangers to The Necessary Stage (TNS). Facilitated by playwright Haresh Sharma and director Alvin Tan, participants will get a special opportunity to learn more about the creative processes that go behind devising TNS’ iconic plays such as Off Centre and Gemuk Girls.

Date: 22nd-23rd July (Sat – Sun), 2PM-6PM

Note: Registration for both workshops are closed


M1 Peer Pleasure – experience the joy of theatre


M1 Peer Pleasure Youth Theatre Festival 2017 

It’s all about embracing our differences this year: with the theme The Other, the festival hopes to provoke dialogue about prejudice and acceptance in our increasingly diverse society today.

So don’t be too quick to brush theatre aside as just another artsy-fartsy hobby. Whether you’re interested in learning more about the nitty gritty of theatre, or are just looking for a fresh way to spend the holidays, M1 Peer Pleasure is worth a spot on your calendar.  

Date: 22nd July – 5th August 2017
Location: Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay

Find out more about M1 Peer Pleasure here

This post was brought to you by M1 Peer Pleasure