A People's Theatre in a Park

National University of Singapore . 2016



Guests at a public forum on the Former National Theatre.






As part of a series of heritage conservation works, Vouse initiated the first digital reconstruction project together with the National University of Singapore (NUS). This virtual reconstruction of a demolished national building prompted an introspective reflection on our collective memories of this beloved people's theatre as well as our current practices of heritage conservation.

The project ultimately culminated in an event: A People's Theatre in the Park; a seminar and public forum, held at the National Library of Singapore on 13 Aug 2016. In collaboration with Singapura Stories, the forum allowed visitors to view an accurately finished and detailed virtual reconstruction of this demolished national cultural landmark of 1960s to 1980s Singapore, and hear a range of recollections on the cultural activities once hosted there, as well as listen to the architect revisit the ideas and considerations behind its design.


A demonstration of the VR experience of the Former National Theatre.

Talking about the theatre, with Mr Alfred Wong, the architect.

Members of the public recounting their experiences at the theatre.

The virtual theatre: the Former National Theatre.

The viewing stand and seating area reconstructed according to dimensions.


The highlight of the Seminar is a faithful virtual replica of the theatre, which was recreated through available architectural drawings and images of the Former National Theatre. Attention to accuracy and spatial realism in creating the immersive VR environment is achieved through close consultation with Alfred Wong, the architect, who was also on hand to explain the design during the Forum.

During the Forum, the architect of the National Theatre, Alfred Wong, was joined by Mrs Santha Bhaskar, Mr Richard Tan, and Mdm Som Said, who have all performed at the venue; as well as Dr Lai Chee Kien, who was behind the National Theatre façade replica installation at Singapore’s Biennale 2013. The Forum was moderated by Richard Ho, renowned award-winning architect and Professor in Practice in NUS Dept of Architecture; as well as Dr Imran, Professor in Practice in NUS Dept of Architecture.