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By early 1944, the base/hospital camp at Chungkai had been transformed from a death camp into something resembling a holiday camp with the most impressive outdoor theatre on the railway. On its stage, four theatrical producers (led by Leo Britt and Joop Postma) vied with each other to be considered "the first and best" by audiences—sometimes employing devious means to win the contest. Meanwhile, musical conductors Norman Smith and Eric Cliffe led a camp orchestra in concerts which culminated in a full evening of classical music.

About the Book

This book tells the story of how music and theatre helped the 61,000 POWs who were sent to these camps survive their ordeal. It is a story that is not well-known to history and it is now being recovered. It is a story about how music and theatre and the other arts are absolutely essential to a society's life.

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Chapter 6a.


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