Lim Chor Pee
Singapore: Epigram Books, 2015
On the cusp of independence, cultures collide in a bedroom in Singapore. As the Vietnam War rages on, the English-educated scholar Lee Hua Min -- "the finest product of the University" -- finds himself hopelessly disillusioned. Enter Wong Ching Mei, a Chinese-educated former nightclub singer seeking to enrol in Nanyang University. Mirroring the intense tussles between the English- and Chinese-speaking during Singapore's formative years, Hua Min and Ching Mei trade ferocious barbs even as they are inexplicably drawn to each other. When Su-Ling, Hua Min's ex-classmate, returns from London, Hua Min is torn between their advances and the extremely different worlds they inhabit. Humorous, witty and prescient, A White Rose At Midnight is a pithy portrait of a soul -- and nation -- divided.
A White Rose At Midnight was first staged to critical acclaim by the Experimental Theatre Club in 1964. It was pioneer playwright Lim Chor Pee's second and final play after the landmark Mimi Fan (1962). In 2014, Centre 42 mounted a partial dramatised reading of the play.