I’m back here in Thailand for the Bangkok Theatre Festival on Tua’s encouragement and invitation. I’m only here for the weekend.

I find Tua Pradit Prasartthong again at the Bangkok Arts and Cultural Centre where he is rehearsing for his next show opening next week. The socio-political backdrop is painted with demonstrations against a proposed amnesty pardoning political offenses, but the spirit In the rehearsal room is much louder. A drum drives the action forward as a khim accentuates the pull and push of the saw. The actors sing with a highly nasal tone typical of Likay. The story maybe domestic, a mother quibbling with grown sons, but the scene is epic, visceral and spell-binding, even while seated with scripts!

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Tua gives notes. How are they remembering all this?! The rehearsal process is in week 2 or so, but the actors are already hitting a lot of the points seen usually in week 3 or 4. Well, they do open in a week but this is clearly the benefit of working with actors great at their craft and well steered by a director who has a clear vision.

Note to self: Clarify your vision.

Oops, running to watch a dress rehearsal now.

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