Photos and Write Up from Papergang Theatre’s Echo Night at the Bush Theatre – incl Bound Feet Blues extract

Writer/ performer Yang-May Ooi was invited to perform an extract of Bound Feet Blues at the Echo event of East Asian performers at the Bush Theatre, hosted by Papergang Theatre back in October. Here are some photos from the night – and also a write up by Papergang on their blog.

Yang-May writes: “It was great fun – and also a privilege to be performing alongside so many talented East Asian artists. Thank you to Papergang Theatre for inviting me to show an extract from Bound Feet Blues. The audience were warm and enthusiastic – some of them said the character of my Mum that I played reminded them of their old aunties from Malaysia! I am delighted!”

With the other performers on the night, and Papergang Theatre founders Simon Ly and Clarissa Wylde (extreme left) Photo credit: Papergang Theatre

Performing “Some Enchanted Evening” extract from Bound Feet Blues


Team BFB L – R: producer Eldarin Yeong, director Jessica Higgs, writer/ performer Yang-May Ooi

For a write up of the evening, check out Papergang Theatre’s blog post “Echo at the Bush”:

“Tuesday 20th of October, saw our first collaboration with the Bush Theatre, a new writing and storytelling event ECHO. We showcased an evening with Continue reading

Come and see my TEDx style talk inspired by Bound Feet Blues – Breaking Tradition: How to Live Unbound

I will be giving a TEDx style talk inspired by my research for my solo show Bound Feet Blues at the Inspiring Speakers Gala on Wed 9th July. The talk is called Breaking Tradition: How to Live Unbound and looks at the life lessons that I learnt from exploring the story of my great gandmother who had bound feet.

Yang-May Ooi talking about bound feet – her left hand stands in for a crippled bound foot

If you enjoyed the work in progress performance of Bound Feet Blues on 26 March, my talk will look behind the show at my personal crisis that led me to find out the story of my family heritage. I also talk about the life lessons that I was able to draw from the courage and spirit I saw in my great grandmother who was able to transcend the brutal limitation imposed on her by her cultural tradition.

If you haven’t managed to see the show but would like to get a flavour of what is in store when the full length performance of Bound Feet Blues is showcased later this year, Breaking Tradition will give you a feel for what lies ahead. Someone who saw me do a snippet of the talk said: “I feel as if I’ve just seen a feature film in 4 minutes!”

The Inspiring Speakers Programme - Gala Finale July 9th 2014

I’ll be giving this talk as part of … Continue reading

Public Speaking Trial by Fire – Speakers Corner [Bound Feet Blues]

There’s nothing like being thrown in at the deep end! As part of the Inspiring Speakers Programme run by Sarah Lloyd-Hughes we get the chance to have a rant and whip up the crowds at Speakers Corner in Hyde Park. It was scary but once we got onto that step ladder each of us socked it to the crowd with vigour and panache.

I had a rant about why women hate our bodies and do violence to ourselves via cosmetic surgery. And ended by asking people in the crowd to tell me which parts of their bodies they loved! What a blast!

via Flickr

My vision for Bound Feet Blues is as a pure form of storytelling

I have added a page to my blog giving the background to the development of Bound Feet Blues.

Bound Feet

My vision for the piece is as a pure form of storytelling with no costumes or props and minimal lighting and music or sound effects. As a child, I loved listening to the stories my mother and Continue reading

It’s the small things that make up some of the best stories [Bound Feet Blues]

We often think that stories need to be grand and on an epic scale to be compelling. We think that great stories involve heroic, larger than life characters. And so, we come to believe that our own stories mean very little because they happen on such a small scale compared to people who have been through war, disaster, terrible illnesses and events that seem “Worthy” of recognitiion.

I am of course not disrespecting the trauma and suffering of people who have been through those harsh and terrible experiences. Those stories are meaningful and need to be told.

Storytelling round a campfire

Storytelling round a campfire

But other stories have their place too. Stories on a smaller, less epic Continue reading