In the six years since it was founded, Liver & Lung Productions has enthralled both local and international audiences with its unique voice and panache. The company behind sold-out theatre performances such as Sepet the Musical and Malaya Relived: The Fall Of Singapore bagged the BOH Cameronian Award in 2017 for Innovation in Musical Theatre for Mahsuri And Other Peculiar Tales – a noteworthy milestone for a team then in its third year of existence.
This year, Liver & Lung Productions would have celebrated another milestone: an invitation to perform at the renowned Underbelly venues at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
As the Covid-19 outbreak shifted these plans to 2021, the young creatives at Liver & Lung Productions entered a nationwide partial lockdown pondering this question: how does a theatre company keep audiences engaged when they can no longer gather under one roof?
Shafeeq Shajahan and Liver & Lung Productions' co-founder Hannah Shields were determined to find an answer with help from digital technology, a whole lot of creativity and a giant leap of faith.
Shajahan and Shields were university mates at UCL in London. No stranger to the practice of collaborating from a distance, the duo decided to start a company based partly in the UK and partly in Malaysia once Shajahan had returned home.
Taking inspiration from their respective Malaysian and British roots, the pair founded Liver & Lung Productions as an outlet to deliver immersive and original stories to the stage.
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Today, while their goal remains the same, their methods of execution have shifted dramatically. Trading in theatre props and stage lights for podcasts and video-editing, the duo are setting an example of how creativity can flourish even under the most trying circumstances. Shajahan and Shields share more in this Q&A: