{Review} I Theatre’s Jewel in the Tale|An Asian Folk Tale Galore

Our trio were all too excited to get back into the theatre today to enjoy I Theatre’s newest production, Jewels in the Tale, which is showing at the newly renovated Alliance Française Theatre, from 17 – 30 August 2015.

I Theatre Jewels in the Tale

22 Aug 2015 – The happy trio at Jewels in the Tale, Alliance Francaise Theatre

Wey asked me, “Mama, what’s Jewels in the Tale? What kind of story is it?” I must admit, I didn’t really know what to expect except that it was going to be a collection of Asian stories and it should be enjoyable.

I Theatre Jewels in the Tale

Do you remember enjoying Asian Folklores when you were younger? I remember loving to read those Asian stories when I was younger, some were wild and nonsensical, while some had good morals behind the tales. Well, be ready to be immersed into Asian Heritage and Culture with a collection of specially selected Asian Folklores at Jewels in the Tale, as the I Theatre team tell them on stage.

I Theatre Jewels in the Tale

Having researched into more than 200 stories, these stories were chosen because they were entertaining, funny and touching but most importantly because each story had to have a jewel! Yes, a jewel – “gems of truth, moral gems of wisdom to pass them on to your children… from generation to generation.” And that’s why the production is called Jewels in the Tale!

With the clever use of puppets, masks, buckets and shawls and even brooms, a total of 8 stories are told.

  • Mat Jenin And the Coconuts ~ Malaysia
  • The Hermit and Two Worms ~ Philippines
  • The Crane’s Gratitude ~ Japan
  • Si Kabayan ~ Indonesia
  • Half a Loaf (Banjjoji) ~ Korea
  • The Princess Who Liked Cats ~ Singapore
  • Tenali Raman and the Three Thieves ~ South India
  • The Four Dragons ~China

As with all I Theatre productions, laughter comes a lot during the act. Little Wey laughed alot as the actors brought out the funny points of the simple stories, and I especially enjoyed the pronounced change in accents of the actors as they told stories from Malaya, Philippines, Japan, Korea and China!

My personal favourites were definitely Half a Loaf (Banjjoji), Tenali Raman and the Three Thieves, The Four Dragons.

Tenali Raman and the Three Thieves

This funny story about the three thieves got the little ones giggling a lot. The three thieves didn’t speak much other than making gibberish sounds but they sounded really comical – almost like the Minions. Yet even without any real dialogue, they managed to bring across what was happening. I suspect the lack of dialogue simplified the story a lot more for the little ones to be captivated. Wey was so amused to see how the three thieves tried so hard to get the bag of “ching ching ching” (treasure) from Tenali Raman only to toss it back into his hands unwittingly! LOL!

I Theatre Jewels in the Tale

OHHH see the bag of Ching Ching Ching?? LOL How do they snatch it from Tenali Raman?

The Four Dragons

Although there was markedly less audience participation in this production, we got our thrill finally in the last story The Four Dragons – a touching tale of how the four Dragons braved angering the Jade Emperor in order to bring relieve to the suffering people during a season of drought.

I Theatre Jewels in the Tale

The Dragons at Rehearsal. Gotta love those cool masks! Source : I Theatre Facebook Page

I wouldn’t spoil the fun but get ready to have some splashing good fun! LOL! It was definitely Wey’s favourite story as he squealed with delight when we got wet! hahaa! It was also nice to learn about how the four great rivers of China came about 🙂

Overall, the stories were fun but a little fast paced and would be better appreciated by children, 5 years or older. However, I think Wey came away from the theatre today, enriched with a taste of Asian stories and I am quite sure he will be asking me to look for more of such stories to read at home! So next stop, the library it is! LOL!

You have only one more weekend to catch The Jewels in the Tale before I Theatre takes the production to Korea for The Grand Opening Festival of the National Arts Culture Centre for Children 2015! So get your tickets now at SISTIC, good seats still available! More ticketing details after the post below.

Thank you for joining us on SAys! Happy Mums.  If you liked what you’ve read on our blog, please follow us on Facebook for the latest updates.  We hope to see you back again soon.

SAys! Audrey

Note : We were extended tickets to the show for the purposes of this review.  All opinions expressed remain our own. Photographs unless otherwise stated are copyright of I Theatre.

About I Theatre’s Jewels in the Tale


When: 17 to 30 August 2015

Where: Alliance Française Theatre, Singapore

Who: 4 years and above and their families

Duration: 50 minutes with no interval

Tickets available through:
SISTIC Website

SISTIC Hotline (65) 6348 5555
SISTIC Authorised Agents islandwide


About SAys! Happy Mums

We are a Singapore Mum Blog hosted by BFFs Shirley & Audrey. We blog about our children, parenting and family lifestyle. Most often than not, we find ourselves immersed in family and kids entertainment and can't escape from the lure of great food!

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