Building cultural citizenship through drama: A study of The Community Theatre in Singapore

Presented by: Dr Natalie Lazaroo

Date: Friday 26 March 2021
Time: 12–1pm
Location: Online via Zoom

Link to recording



Amidst Singapore’s reputation as a ‘shiny, global city’ lies the oft-obscured realities of inequality and poverty that exist in the nation-state. Despite not having an official poverty line, it is estimated that 20 to 35 per cent of Singaporean households live in relative poverty; many of these households live in rental flat communities, which are representative of the social housing sector in Singapore. Residents of such low-socioeconomic neighbourhoods tend to be categorised on the margins of the social power structure and excluded from particular narrative threads of nationhood.  

In this seminar, I share some of the research that has emerged out of a long-term collaboration with a group called The Community Theatre (TCT) in Singapore. TCT was created in 2014 as a ground-up initiative led by artist-facilitator Izzaty Ishak; through drama, TCT engages young people living in rental flats to examine the social issues faced by their communities. In particular, I reflect on how TCT has created a platform for civic participation and how this can help build a sense of cultural citizenship for the young people involved. 



Dr Natalie Lazaroo is a Lecturer in Drama. Her research interests include cultural citizenship, theatre and young people, and qualitative research methodologies. She currently serves on the Executive Committee of the Australasian Association for Theatre, Drama and Performance Studies (ADSA) and is on the editorial board of the journal Applied Theatre Research. Her most recent publication looks at an intergenerational community performance project examining the relationship between health and inequality in Singapore. 


About Research Seminar and Workshop Series


School of Communication and Arts Research Seminar Series

The research seminar and workshop series occur each semester, each with a different topic and guest speaker from UQ or otherwise.

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Online via Zoom

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