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Photos by Yeo Tze Hern ENGLISH | PLAIN ENGLISH

Why Be Good When You Can Be the Best?

Deonn Yang (Singapore)

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Why Be Good When You Can Be the Best? is a funny play that exposes the truth of our daily lives. It follows the journey of Tan Hui Min, "Min". Min is your average, everyday, down-to-earth worker. She follows the same routine every day.

Min works hard and is good at her job. She leads a simple life. She is happy and content with her life. One day, Min goes off from her routine. She ends up at a game show competing to be The Best Employee Ever. The game show changes Min. She has to choose between two options. Does she choose what makes her happy, or does she become the best? What does she have to give up in order to be the best?

Deonn Yang writes and directs the play. The performers are Chng Xin Xuan, Mitchell Fang, Sindhura Kalidas, Suhaili Safari and Eve Voigtlander. It questions our focus on work output and success.

Venue support by Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts.

Open captions in English for all shows.
Post-show dialogue on 13 January 2023, with speech to text interpretation available upon request. Please email your request to info@singaporefringe.com before 22 December 2022.

Artist Statement

“The starting point of this play started when I looked at my own life.

“Our society puts work at the centre. People focus on progress and being perfect. Singaporeans are used to this bad work culture. There is this constant need and want to be the "best". It makes me think that we lost sight of what we should value. We become machines that work. Have we given up on caring for others in exchange for success and perfection?

"As we follow Min's journey, I've snuck in some of my favourite things. This includes tacky 90s gameshows, to Singapore's real unofficial mascot, the community cat. Why Be Good When You Can Be the Best? is a cheeky title. There are a lot more things to be in life than being the best. The idea of "best" sounds good. But who defines what "best" mean? I ask "Is there another version of being the best?"'
— Deonn Yang

Why Be Good When You Can Be the Best? is a satirical play that follows the journey of Tan Hui Min, “Min”.

Min is your average, every day, down-to-earth worker. She has her daily routine down pat. Min works hard, is good at her job, and leads a relatively simple life. She is happy and content with her current life. One day, Min veered off from her usual routine and unexpectedly finds herself at a game show competing to be The Best Employee Ever. The experience at the game show changes Min, and she is forced to decide between what she knows and brings her contentment and happiness, and wanting to be the best. What does she have to give up in order to be the best?

Written and directed by Deonn Yang, Why Be Good When You Can Be the Best? is performed by Chng Xin Xuan, Mitchell Fang, Sindhura Kalidas, Suhaili Safari and Eve Voigtlander, and questions our societal obsession with productivity and success.

Venue support by Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts.

Post-show dialogue on 13 January 2023.

Artist Statement

“The genesis of this play started from a place of introspection.”

“In our increasingly work-centric society, people are becoming more obsessed with progress and perfection. Singaporeans are no stranger to the vicious cycle of work culture and perfectionism. There is this relentless need and desire to be the “best”. It makes me wonder, have we lost sight of what we truly value, of what makes us these complete whole people instead of these soulless work machines we have slowly become? Have we given up our humanity, empathy and the simple things in life that ground us in exchange for success and perfection?”

“As we journey with my protagonist Min, I’ve snuck in some of my favourite things from tacky gameshows from the 90s, to Singapore’s real unofficial mascot, the community cat. Why Be Good When You Can Be the Best? is a tongue-in-cheek title because I think there are a lot more things to be in life than being the best. The idea of “best” is tempting, but who defines what “best” mean? In the space that the process has afforded me, I ask “Is there another version of being the best?”’
— Deonn Yang

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Date & Duration
12 to 14 January 2023, 8pm
14 to 15 January 2023, 3pm
60 min with no intermission

Location
NAFA Studio Theatre

Price
$32 | $24*
*Concession for students, NSF, senior citizens and PWD cardholders

Accessibility Features
Open captions in English

Rating
General

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