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Taiwan-Malaysia’s first jointly produced play sparks cross-border dialogue

  • Date:2023-10-16
Taiwan-Malaysia’s first jointly produced play 'The Brotherhood'

“The Brotherhood (同棲時間),” a collaborative production between the Cultural Division of the Taipei Representative Office in Malaysia and renowned figures in the Malaysian theater scene, brings together Taiwanese playwright Lin Meng-huan (林孟寰), Malaysian director Loh Kok Man (羅國文), and producer William Yap (葉偉良). The play features actors from both countries, including Lawrence Ong (翁書強), Noah Yap (葉國文), and Wang Chao-yang (王肇陽), among others. From Sept. 21 to 24, the play was performed five times at the Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre, with the premiere on Sept. 21 selling out and receiving enthusiastic responses from the audience, including attendees who traveled from Singapore to be part of the event.


“The Brotherhood” tells the story of a Taiwanese-Malaysian couple who discover at their father’s funeral that they are half-brothers sharing the same father but different mothers. Their relationship is put to the test as they navigate this revelation. This collaboration not only carries significant thematic weight but also marks the first-ever joint production between Taiwanese and Malaysian theater worlds.

In 2018, “The Brotherhood” was performed in Tokyo, Japan, and this production has now been brought to Malaysia. To ensure that the storyline resonates more deeply with the local audience, the production team invited Malaysian playwrights Leong Kar-yen (梁家恩) and Mark Beau de Silva to collaborate on adapting the script. They integrated the unique linguistic and societal contexts of Malaysia, providing a nuanced interpretation that adds depth to the performance. The adaptation still maintains the original exploration of issues related to human rights, autonomy, survival, and the courage to make choices. The Cultural Division of the Taipei Representative Office in Malaysia hopes that this collaborative effort and the play’s translation will foster deeper dialogue between Taiwan and Malaysia, making this partnership particularly meaningful.