Moon-Talks vol.4

On our final Moon-Talk, we’ll be looking at the higher end of the SES spectrum with Shop-keep Kim Chuan played by Ivan Choong and professional tiger-aunt Chee Hoon played by Qotn van.s.y.


Pictured above: 武松打虎 (Chinese folktale of a hero fighting off a demon tiger)

What is the brighter moon for you?
Chee Hoon/ Qotn: Maintaining a safe, stable, comfortable life for her family. Who wouldn’t want that?

Kim Chuan/ Ivan Choong: The brighter moon for Ah Chuan would have to be his niece Choo Leng. His precious daughter whom he dots and he likes being able to provide for his family in the safety of his ancestral home on the farm – where he can reminisce and share his past

What can we hope to learn from you/your character?

Chee Hoon/ Qotn: More of a thinking point, really. Most times, things and people simply aren’t what we expect or want them to be. “Best laid plans of mice and men” and all that. No matter how well we think we know people or read situations, that understanding will never be comprehensive nor useful if we persist in thinking of things as we think they “should be” rather than as “they are”: our actions may backfire no matter how well our intentions; whatever one may believe, “the means” often profoundly affect “the end” we try to obtain.

With that in mind: Do the ends justify the means? Is there a “right way” to achieving your ends? Can best intentions ultimately be self-serving, and what of it?

Kim Chuan/ Ivan Choong: Protection and being a parent – and what it means to watch your child grow up in the world. 

Could you pick one line of dialogue from Goh Poh Seng’s original script to sum up your character? Or, what is your favourite line in the play? Why?

Chee Hoon/ Qotn: #spoilers #watchandfindout #nocheating

Kim Chuan/ Ivan Choong: “I have never commanded you. But now, I ask. Go in and pack.” To me, this line balances the love he has for his niece, that even in a state of anger, he cannot bring himself to command.

What do you love and hate about your character? Also, what is the biggest challenge of your role?

Chee Hoon/ Qotn: Everything, everything, and everything.
Well, to be specific: everybody knows someone like that. So how do you do justice to a character that everyone else already knows all too well?
Kim Chuan/ Ivan Choong: Love the character that is real and multi-faceted. The biggest challenge is how little is said but so much is implied.
What does this play mean to you?

Chee Hoon/ Qotn:  It’s an amazing and haunting feeling when you read a script that resonates with you; this was written in 1963, 55 years ago! Yet its themes of prejudice and entitlement in all their forms (class, gender, age, etc) are still current today.

It’s very liberating to see the chaotic thoughts and musings and questions about the world that are circling and crowding your cranium put into words by another person, and all the more so when that person is in a time in history or a place in the world far from you.
It’s a vindication of sorts.
Kim Chuan/ Ivan Choong: A precious opportunity to tell a Singaporean story 🙂   
Now for the most important question: What is your character’s ideal breakfast?
Chee Hoon/ Qotn: Brunch. No wait, that’s mine.
Kim Chuan/ Ivan Choong: Probably hot soya bean milk with you tiao! 

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