Urban Kuilt | urbankulit.tumblr.com
“Theatre has always been the younger sibling, and the horribly uncool one.” claims Joey, one half of the arts blog Urban Kulit.

With their self-professed “insane love” for the performing arts, Emilie Ohelers and Joey Tay embarked on a project set to change this perception. Urban Kulit is the brainchild of the two theatre practitioners, set up with the intention of bridging the gap between audiences and artists.

Armed with their video camera and a huge appetite for the dramatic arts, they’re constantly on the lookout for opportunities to bring audiences closer to the stage.

From top : 1.Urban Kulit 2.Platform 65 Interview 3.Wicked Interview
“We are the only arts blog who actively goes out to pursue video interviews.”

Nothing beats hearing from the horse’s mouths, we say.

“I heard somewhere that only 10% of the population goes to the theatre.” However true (or false) this may be, Urban Kulit hopes to establish and engage a new generation of theatregoers through their interviews with the creative minds of the local theatre scene.

Joey tells us “Theatre originated from ritual and has had a long history as both a source of entertainment for the masses and the voice of the people for hundreds of years. In Shakespeare’s day, louts and lowlifes spent their days at the theatre. Theatre today isn’t as communal.”

She also candidly admits that one of the reasons for creating Urban Kulit was for the ”sheer joy of ‘showing off’ their peers and colleagues.”  Theatre practitioners selflessly slog out in the industry with their pay being incongruous to their efforts. It is this sheer dedication that they find important to acknowledge and highlight to the public.

Theatre productions, unlike film, are transient and very few remnants of a show exist once it closes.

Listening to creative minds demystify the artistic process, the folks at Urban Kulit have been inspired to share these intimate conversations with directors and actors with larger audiences.

“Theatre productions, unlike film, are transient and very few remnants of a show exist once it closes.”

Urban Kulit recognises the power of the web as a platform to showcase these collected ‘remnants’ to the public and proudly proclaim their status as a niche media outlet that lends their support to the growing number of talents in the arts and theatre scene.

Paying homage to the traditional puppetry native to South East Asia, Wayang Kulit, the site’s quirky name borrows the Malay word for skin, ‘Kulit’- and literally translates as Urban Skin. The unique moniker seems a fitting representation for the traditional art form of theatre seen through the lens of our contemporary age.

The aim of theatre has always been to entertain, educate and inspire audiences.While there has been the recent announcement of a 40 million investment into the arts industry over the next few years, initiatives like Urban Kulit’s non profit venture is one that powers the arts scene with their passion, rather than just monetary support.

If you’re compelled to give your two cents worth of weight of silk on urban skin, they are more than happy to welcome contributors to their theatrical cause. Give them a “where for art thou” holler at urbankulit@gmail.com!

Urban Kulit's upcoming project, ' Type&Casted ',  will be hosted on 16 August at The Pigeonhole. A playread evening at showcasing the work of four emerging dramatic writers. These writers in their early to mid 20s, but have had a respectable amount of experience in the theatre scene.
Keep the evening free and head down!
Curated by Ansen Goh, Text by Nicki Chua