Catch This Local Play That Will Transport You Back To The 1890s In Taiping

'Opium by Any Other Name' tells the story of two young lovers trying to resolve the conflicts of two secret societies.

Cover image via Amberjade Arts (Provided to SAYS) & @amberjadearts (Instagram)

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If you're a fan of historical plays, you might want to check out Opium by Any Other Name, an original tragedy that will transport you to Taiping during the 1890s

Produced by Amberjade Arts, a local performing arts platform dedicated to championing emerging artists, Opium by Any Other Name is set to premiere on 27 July, with nine shows playing until 6 August.

Inspired by the tragic and romantic beats of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, this original Malaysian work — written and directed by Tarrant Kwok — seeks to cover the history of a volatile Malaysian landscape, a love that knows no bounds, and different human nature. 

It tells the classic tale of betrayal, romance, and tragedy between two secret societies, Ghee Hin and Hai San

A peek into the cast rehearsing for the play.

Image via @amberjadearts (Instagram)

In the shadows of British Malaya, the Ghee Hin and Hai San clans are in a decades-old dispute amidst economic uncertainty and existential threats. In the midst of the chaos, two young lovers navigate a journey of self-discovery, while attempting to unite the opposing secret societies. What will become of the young couple? 

Supported by The Tiger Archives — The Uncage Fund, Opium by Any Other Name is one local play that will leave you on the edge of your seat throughout the evening

Writer and director Tarrant, says, "I feel we don't have enough work exploring our multicultural legacy.

"Exploring dialect, status, and family allows us to create a unique, varied, diasporan snapshot. This establishes the basis of a believable world, and thus, the inevitability of each character's tragedy.

"In doing this kind of vulnerable work, it is important that our actors' safety is kept foremost — the challenge is to do compelling, dangerous, and intimate work as safely as possible. All this, I believe, pushes our craft forward sustainably."

Opium by Any Other Name stars Shi Hoong, Celeste Low, Veronica Boh, Adry Nasution, Charles Roberts, and Dennis Lim. 

Ticket prices for the play are RM58 for adults, and RM48 for students, senior citizens, and the disabled

Here are the event details:

Date and Time:
- 27, 28, 29 July and 2, 3, 4, 5 August: 8.30pm
- 30 July and 6 August: 3pm

- Black Box, Damansara Performing Arts Centre (DPAC), Empire Damansara, Petaling Jaya, Selangor

Amberjade Arts is also having a group promotion, where you can buy four tickets at RM55 each! Student bookings for groups of 30 students or more are also entitled to one free workshop and a ticket price of RM45 each. 

Advisory: Abuse, violence, graphic language, flashing lights, and loud sounds. Suitable for ages 15 and up.

Head over to this website to purchase your tickets!

You can also follow Amberjade Arts on Facebook and Instagram for the latest updates. 

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