Cover Story: First couple of the stage

This article first appeared in Options, The Edge Malaysia Weekly, on January 28, 2019 - February 03, 2019.
Cover Story: First couple of the stage
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The Actors Studio (TAS) may be turning 30, but co-founders Datuk Faridah Merican and Joe Hasham aren’t planning on retiring just yet. Announcing a year-long restaging of popular past works and new ones in celebration of TAS’ three magical decades, Malaysian theatre’s power couple talk to Anandhi Gopinath about the past, the present and the future.


Driving to the Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre (klpac) in Sentul always feels like a homecoming to me. Having visited frequently in the last decade as an audience member, my work as a writer has also brought me here to interview the hundreds of talented actors, directors and musicians who breathe such vivid life into what must now be thousands of shows. Many of these interviewees have become friends, and I consider myself fortunate to count in that list The Actors Studio (TAS) co-founders Joe Hasham and Datuk Faridah Merican, whose physical base today is at klpac.

I am early for my appointment with Malaysia’s first couple of the stage, so I enjoy a bit of a stroll as I look back on the time I have spent here. My love for theatre was born here, as was a budding romance with the man I eventually married.

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