Robert Yeo (b. 1940)
Robert Yeo was educated in the University of Singapore and the Institute of Education, University of London. He worked for a short period in Bangkok, Thailand. He has published four books of poetry, one novel, and written five plays, all of which have been performed in Singapore and abroad. In addition, he has edited numerous volumes of poetry, short stories and plays for schools and for the general public.
His plays include Second Chance (1988), The Eye of History (1992), and Your Bed is Your Coffin (yet to be staged), but he is perhaps best known for The Singapore Trilogy, which consists of Are You There, Singapore? (1974), One Year Back Home (1980), and Changi (1997). Yeo is also the author of a novel, The Adventures of Holden Heng (1986). Most recently, Yeo has also contributed librettos to operas: Kannagi—The Jeweled Anklet (2009) and Fences (2012), both collaborations with composer John Sharpley. Yeo’s poetry collections consist of Coming Home, Baby (1971), And Napalm Does Not Help (1977), A Part of Three (1989), and Leaving Home, Mother (1999). In 2012, Yeo published an anthology of selected poems in The Best of Robert Yeo. Yeo has also written Routes: A Singaporean Memoir 1940-75, which was published in 2011 and records the first thirty-five years of his life.
Yeo has written numerous articles on the English language theatre over the last fifteen years and served as chairman of the Drama Advisory Committee for over a decade. For his services to drama he was awarded the Public Service Medal in 1991. He served as chairman of the Drama Review Committee, National Arts Council, from the early 1990s and is currently an arts advisor to the National Arts Council and a board member of the Arts Fund.
He was, until recently, Associate Professor at the National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. He is currently an Adjunct faculty at the Singapore Management University.
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