Dramatic pre-emption in Singapore's National Theatre: constructing national identity before an independent nation

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The Singapore National Theatre, initiated by the Ministry of Culture in 1959, was created to propagate a mandated idea of a multicultural Singapore nation at the onset of self-governance within the British Commonwealth, although six years before independence as a Republic. The theatre was commissioned at the end of a limited competition in September 1960, was constructed by 1962 and operative by August 1963. From primary oral accounts, and other primary material, the author investigates the question of presumptive national identity construction through the architectural project.

Keywords: Malaya; National Theatre; Singapore; architecture; independence

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14608944.2012.702740

Affiliations: Bond University, Gold Coast, Australia

Publication date: September 1, 2012

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