The theme of BIPAM 2019 is Eyes Open
, and it’s a proposal to you and to ourselves to do just that - look at things with open eyes. As a start, let’s recognize firstly that the region which is our home is both a tropical paradise and also well-versed in violence, strife and struggles, and secondly that while we are all inhabitants of the same vibrant and thriving region there is still a lot we don’t know about each other, which hinders our desire to come together and join hands.
With every edition of BIPAM we are also determined to continue crafting a more complete and comprehensive picture of the region we call "Southeast Asia", as well as to strengthen the "B" in BIPAM. This year, we present panel discussions and speakers that will help to clarify what's actually happening in the theatre scenes of countries throughout Southeast Asia.
So come and meet a troop of Thai artists in the panels on young theatre makers and performing arts festivals in Thailand, hear from thriving artists in Cambodia, Myanmar, and Laos, and exchange more deeply with participants from Malaysia, Singapore, and beyond! This packed 5-day program will run in creative spaces across Bangkok, both those we've always loved, and new ones that we are excited to introduce for the first time.
BIPAM 2019 Programme
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:: Showcase Performances ::
BIPAM “Eyes Open” is packed with 25 performances by Thai and international artists over 5 days. Highlight performances are Damage Joy
by B-Floor (Thailand) and Violent Event
by Billing & Schulz (Germany). These two performances tackle the persistent and important issue of violence. Even though we might be afraid, shy or just plain fed up of looking at it, we hope to encourage you to look violence in the eye once again and navigate more deeply into its stark nature. On top of that there will be performances of In Ter’s View
with Thai director WichayaArtamat and New Cambodian Artists (NCA), Sədʌb
by Noise Theatre (Thailand), Made in Uni
- a double bill of selected Thai students works, The Grand Balcony
by New Yangon Theatre Institute from Myanmar, and a multi-national play reading of The Optic Trilogy
- a collaboration between Southeast Asian writer, director, dramaturg, and actors.
:: Talks &Discussions ::
1. Keynote Speaker
Becoming Pradit Prasartthong
Speaker: Pradit Prasartthong (Thailand)
When it comes to Thai contemporary performing arts, Pradit Prasartthong is among the first names to be mentioned. The recipient of the 2004 Silpathorn Award in performing arts, Pradit co-founded Makhampom Theatre, led the Bangkok Theatre Network organisation, founded Bangkok Theatre Festival, and is currently Artistic Director of Anatta Theatre Troupe.
Pradit’s keynote speech will look deeply into his lifetime career as an artist along the course of the history of the Thai theatre community. Pradit is a true contemporary artist who has gracefully brought his expertise in traditional forms such as Likay and Thai classical dance into contemporary performances. His pioneering work in initiating major collaborations and connections between Thai and international artists still sees its legacy and repercussion in the performing arts scene today.
2. Panel Discussions
Sustainability of Long - Standing Theatre Companies in Southeast Asia
Panelists: Piyashat 'Ap' Sinpimonboon (Makhampom, Thailand), Sineenadh Keitprapai (Crescentmoon Theatre, Thailand), Maria Gloriosa Santos - Cabangon (PETA, Philippines), and Ivy N. Josiah (Five Arts Centre, Malaysia)
Moderator: Nirandara Sethsiri
Learn from various long-standing theatre groups in Southeast Asia to see how they have worked to sustain their existence from the start. What social contexts have affected their strategies in surviving as a company through the passing of time? Are the struggles and transformation common or different from one company to another?
Young Generation of Performing Artists
Panelists: Kwin Bhichitkul (Deeng Theatre, Thailand), Thanaphon Accawatanyu (Splashing Theatre, Thailand), Kornkarn Rungsawang (Pichet Klunchun Dance Company, Thailand), and Sreynoch Khon (New Cambodian Artists).
Moderator: Amitha Amranand
Listen to the ideas of the young generation of artists from Thailand and Cambodia. What are their expectations and dreams? What drives their creation? What are the challenges they face as an up-and-coming generation of the scene in their locality?
Thai Performing Arts Festivals
Panelists: Bangkok Theatre Festival, Low Fat Arts Festival, Act Up Festival (Chiangmai), BICT Fest, Unfolding Kafka Festival, and KhonRak Mime Festival
Moderator: Asst. Prof. Pawit Mahasarinand
Meet the makers of some of the major performing arts festivals in Thailand and witness a wealthy-and-healthy range of performing arts in a country where structural support for contemporary arts is close to none. Learn more about each festival’s objectives, current situation, and their challenges in sustaining the festivals.
Southeast Asian Producer's Network #1 Producers/Programmers and Case Studies of Political Resistance
Panelists: Bilqis Hijjas (Malaysia), Dujdao Vadhanapakorn (Thailand),
Curator / Moderator: June Tan
This discussion will highlight events of resistance to political positions / issues that used artistic expression. Looking from the perspectives of producers and programmers, we hope to discuss the role and involvement of the speakers in those cases, and possible strategies and mechanism to counter backlash from those events.
Southeast Asian Writer's Forum: Taboos in Southeast Asian Playwriting
Speakers: Ridhwan Saidi (Malaysia), Muhammad Abe (Indonesia), Jaa Panthachat (Thailand)
Curator / Moderator: AlfianSa’at (Singapore)
In Southeast Asia, various nation-states have enacted laws that define the limits of speech, often on the basis of ‘public interest’ or ‘national security’. And yet some playwrights have found ways to address some of the more contentious issues in their respective countries. While some have utilised the form of allegory or satire, others have explored non-textual approaches. Theatre-makers from the region will discuss how they negotiate social, cultural and political taboos in playwriting. How effective is metaphor in expressing a political reality? How viable is it to create an ‘underground scene’ as a response to surveillance? And when speech is outlawed, can the body find other ways to ‘speak’?
Southeast Asia Producer's Network #2 From Art to Direct Action and Social Benefit
Panelists: Fahmi Fadzil (Malaysia), Sombat Boonngamanong (Thailand), Tanwarin Sukkhapisit (Thailand)
Curator/Moderator: June Tan (Malaysia)
This discussion will look at the motivations and challenges that led the invited artists into direct participation in structures / institutions that represent governance and / or legislation. We hope to explore how this direct participation has affected the artists in them, and to discuss the role of art in the larger context of society and governance.
Adaptation Works in Southeast Asia
Panelists: Damkerng Thitapiyasak (Thailand), Parnrut Kritchanchai (Thailand), Ninart Boonpothong (Thailand), Guelan Luarca (Philippines), and Ruth Phonstaphone (Myanmar)
A panel that brings together writers from the region whose focus is on adapting scripts from Western plays. What are their styles of work? How do they choose the scripts to work with, and what are their methods in adapting them?
Constellation of Dystopia: Artists on Violence and Injustice
Panelists: Irwan Ahmett & Tita Salina (Indonesia) and Teerawat Mulvilai (Thailand)
Moderator: Asst. Prof. Dr. Parichat Jungwiwattanaporn
Artists from two countries are brought together in this panel to discuss their research interests in exploring the issues of violence and political conflicts in Southeast Asian countries. Highlighting the panel are IrwanAhmett&Tita Salina who will not travel from Indonesia to Bangkok by plane, but will slowly travel by bus, boat, and on foot. They will collect evidence and objects in the journey and bring them to the panel to meet TeerawatMulvilai who has spent a year researching art and censorship in five Asian countries.
Academic Paper Presentation by Alliance of Performing Arts in Higher Education of Thailand (PATH)
Moderator: Asst. Prof. Dr. Parichat Jungwiwattanaporn
PATH is joining BIPAM 2019 with three performing arts academic paper presentations, selected from the recent National Conference on Performings Arts 2019;
"Memory, History and Theatre: Contemporary Theatre and the History of 6 October Incident" by Pasakorn Intoo-Marn, Faculty of Fine and Applied Arts, Thammasat University
"The Comedies of King Rama VI: New Interpretation through Performing Arts" by Pawaris Mina and Nattaporn Sathitvarathorn, Faculty of Arts, Silpakorn University
"The Impacts of SinsaiRoo Jai Ton Project on the Development of Teaching and Creating Contemporary Performance in Northeast of Thailand" by Pachaya Akkapram, Faculty of Fine and Applied Arts, Khon Kaen University
“Aspects of Thai-Taiwanese collaboration projects” By Artwave - Taiwan International Arts Network (Tentative title)
Speaker: Art Wave - Taiwan International Arts Network (Taiwan)
Learn more about Taiwanese contemporary art scene and its previous collaborative works with Thai and Southeast Asian artists. The panel wishes to look forward into potential formats of closer cooperation between Taiwan and contemporary art communities in other Southeast Asian countries.
3. Table Meetings
Featured Table #1 - Introduction to Festival Tokyo: Connection between the city and the arts while reaching out to Southeast Asia (Tentative title) Speaker: Kaku Nagashima, Director
Featured Table #2 - “The Bombie Protocol” - Where Southeast Asian Creativity stands in Solidarity Speaker: WasurachataUnaprom
Open call for other table meeting topics! We’re welcoming creators to host table talks on topics of their choice. The purpose of the meetings can be to inspire, inform, and much more. This is a great opportunity for networking and sharing ideas in an easy-going atmosphere.
:: Workshops ::
Get hands-on and eyes open in workshops led by BIPAM 2019 artists. Meet Nana Dakin
, director of Damage Joy by B-Floor and Billinger & Schulz
, directors of Violent Event. We’re honored to be joined this year by “The Dream Body” workshop by Nuttarote Wangwinyoo
, a life transformation coach and facilitator with expertise in non-violent communication and collective leadership. A special session by UNESCO Bangkok
test-driving its Shared History curriculum, a unique in-house curriculum developed for uniting Southeast Asia through common history and history-in-the-making. And a theatre criticism workshop by The International Association of Theatre Critics – Thailand Centre (IATC Thailand)
. Gain an opportunity to attend two performances in BIPAM to write a review and learn to analyze. Every review will be critiqued by both the participants and the professional critics. Your writing may be selected for publication at “The Momentum,” a leading Thai-language lifestyle and culture website.*
*IATC workshop is conducted in Thai only and is not included in BIPAM Pass. Separate registration is needed. Please contact email@example.com for more information.
Get your BIPAM pass
For more information, please contact
Activity Department, Bangkok Art and Culture Centre
Tel. 02 214 6630 ext. 530