sound bites

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 12 February, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 12 February, 2006, 12:00am

You act, write, direct and teach, so do you ever find time to watch a show that doesn't feature you? What do you think of the quality of local theatre?

Stage actress Shaw Mei-kwan:

'I get to see shows, but I have to be selective. My workload has increased in the past three years, so I don't have much free time. I try to see as many shows as possible, whether they're professional, amateur or student productions. One reason for going to the theatre is to fill an emotional void - or to learn something. So, when I choose a show, I want to make sure I get something from it.

'As for the local theatre scene today, I think it's transformed over the past few years. There are fewer translated or Shakespeare plays. Instead, there are more original productions. These new shows are creative, closer to people and, on the whole, more entertaining.

'I'm not saying this in a negative way. I see it as an educational process. People watch something easy to understand before moving on to works that are more meaningful and artistic. The audience needs to realise that theatre isn't highbrow and beyond their reach. In fact, because of this recent transformation, I think theatre is becoming more common among the younger generation.'