‘Teenage Textbook’ to get TV-reboot in March

Clockwise from top, left: actors Tay Ping Hui, Ong Yi Xuan, Chen Yixin and Chris Mak. Photos: Epigram Books, Lasalle, Tay Ping Hui/Instagram, Chen Yixin/Instagram, Chris Mak/Instagram
Clockwise from top, left: actors Tay Ping Hui, Ong Yi Xuan, Chen Yixin and Chris Mak. Photos: Epigram Books, Lasalle, Tay Ping Hui/Instagram, Chen Yixin/Instagram, Chris Mak/Instagram

What’s arguably Singapore’s only popular teenage novel has been adapted once again into a television series that will hit screens in March. 

Mediacorp’s reboot of The Teenage Textbook comes two decades after it first was turned into a hit film movie and musical and will air Tuesdays on Channel 5 starting March 2. The 13-part series stars up-and-coming Ong Yi Xuan as 17-year-old lead Mui Ee and Tay Ping Hui as her father. Actress Chen Yixin will play popular girl Sissy and radio DJ Chris Mak appears as school heartthrob Tom. 

The Teenage Textbook and its sequel Teenage Workbook sold thousands of copies in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s. They were written by Singaporean author Adrian Tan while he was a law undergraduate. 

The coming-of-age story follows Mui Ee as she navigates life through polytechnic school and the workforce. The movie, played by Melody Goh and Caleb Goh, topped Singapore’s box office for a month when it came out in 1998. It was brought to the stage in 2017 following a successful Kickstarter campaign. 

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