The Song and Dance Players (SoDa), who are a group of music theatre enthusiasts, are staging “Awaking Beauty” from 18 to 20 December 2015, at the Drama Centre Black Box. It is a musical by the Olivier and Tony Award-winning playwright Alan Ayckbourn and composer Denis King.

Awaking Beauty is a retelling of the fairy tale Sleeping Beauty and it explores what happens after the true love’s kiss and the happily ever after. The small-scale musical production follows the story of Sleeping Beauty, her prince and the wicked witch, exploring the obsession society has with beauty as well as what a happy ending is. It also questions the typical love-at-first-sight narrative. Check out their behind the scenes video here:

SoDa is an interesting music theatre collective group in that they are a body for non-professional practitioners of theatre. Yes, many cast members have full-time day jobs but they turn into actors and singers whenever they get a free moment. Not only do they provide training for passionate people to refine their technical abilities and become better performers, they also host workshops for young people who may not have time for full-time training. Their ultimate aim is to build up a community of non-professional practitioners.

While an ambitious aim, they have come far since their inception in 2011 and this inaugural musical is the culmination of the work they have done. Earlier in March they made an Into the Woods style video to ask for sponsorship:

While theatre companies in Singapore are not uncommon (think PANGDEMONiUM!Singapore Repertory Theatre and many more) and put up productions all year round (Chinglish is ongoing now), there are not many opportunities for amateur musical and theatre enthusiasts. It’s an absolute pity because musicals are excellent ways to acquire many skills that schools sometimes miss out on. They help with stage presence, vocal manipulation, and even just basic confidence in speaking, which are all marketable skills in various industries. Even if you don’t acquire these skills, the simple camaraderie that comes from working together and the passion that helps ease the monotony of work-life is indeed something worth sacrificing weekends for.

Soda pop

For more information on “Awaking Beauty”, click here.

All pictures taken from SoDa players Facebook page.

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