Esplanade - Theatres by the Bay
“In a work featuring twelve short musical scores by Erik Griswold, director Tamara Saulwick and Tan have collaborated to devise a uniquely structured, visually stunning choreographic, sound-based performance. STAGE WHISPERS
A work that sweeps across the senses, Dragon Ladies Don’t Weep is a sonic portrait of new music icon Margaret Leng Tan – an evocative exploration of memory, time, control and loss.
New York-based Singaporean pianist Tan forged a path as a major force within the American avant-garde, serving as muse for such giants as John Cage and George Crumb, and transforming the toy piano into a serious instrument. Her stellar career is a touchstone for the past 40 years of experimental musical innovation.
Dragon Ladies Don’t Weep combines spoken and recorded text, projected images and original music for prepared piano, toy piano, toys and percussion by Tan’s long-term collaborator Erik Griswold.
Created by a team of Singaporean and Australian artists, including director Tamara Saulwick, video designer Nick Roux, and dramaturg Kok Heng Leun and performed by Tan, this cross-cultural collaboration is an evocative collage of the forces that have shaped Tan’s life and how music has been both her passion and her refuge.
Dragon Ladies Don’t Weep is a Chamber Made and CultureLink Singapore co-production and is co-commissioned by Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay and AsiaTOPA
World Premiere | 28 February 2020| AsiaTOPA | Arts Centre Melboure
Singapore Premiere | 1-4 April 2021 | Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay
★★★★★ ‘[Tan] remains a vital and energetic performer, and Dragon Ladies provides us with a rare insight into that which drives her passion as an explorer and pioneer of new musical territories.’
‘This one-night-only world premiere performance at Asia TOPA in Melbourne is going to be very difficult to describe because most superlatives would short-change Tan for her display of artistry, grace, style, eloquence, presence and physicality … These aren’t just sounds that entertain. Coupled with her lines of spoken word, they’re sounds that stir emotions and jolt the senses.’