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Amah in the Bathtub

It's 1967 and the women who are members of a British swimming club in colonial Singapore take their social events seriously - but not all of them know what's going on at home.

A young mother, Connie Conport, is particularly clueless about problems developing between her two young boys and their nanny. She has hired an amah, a servant from China, who is a member of a group dedicated to domestic service.

Ah Chat belongs to a sisterhood of 'black and whites'. They wear a traditional uniform and swear an oath to remain celibate. On their rare days off, they meet up at their headquarters, the kongsi house. It's a refuge and a support group. These women are her only family in Singapore.

Elderly Ah Chat has good references - seventeen British families have employed her previously - but this position seems to have serious problems.

Sound Design: Jon Nicholls
Written, directed and produced by Judith Kampfner

A Corporation for Independent Media production for BBC Radio 4.

Release date:

45 minutes

Last on

Wed 1 Oct 2014 14:15


Role Contributor
Flora HamptonAlexandra Williamson
Donna SimonAmy Warren
Connie ConportRuth Moore
Rupert ConportTom Phelps
Brian ConportBryn Spender
Priscilla HamptonSuzanne Bertish
Sun Yun WingHansel Tan
Sylvia LimMargaret Leng Tan
Ah SuiJane Wu
PianistHannah Nicholls
WriterJudith Kampfner
DirectorJudith Kampfner
ProducerJudith Kampfner