HOLEYBALONEY

[心得] 1003訪問 & Jam On 表演

這次的心得文我把3個活動綜合在一篇po文來寫。

活動1:1003電臺訪問
每次聽訪問之前會有一點點期待,因為明知道新加坡DJ平均水平不高,但是因為這次是好玩的蘇打綠,一定很有趣。

果 然….. 整個感覺就是個很沒有水準的訪問。根本像是在聊天。整個訪問大概只談了五分鐘的新專輯,其余時間就閑聊些有的沒的。爆家凱的料、硬拗青峰唱翻墻會唱的別人 的歌。整個很囧。打綠連一首新專輯的歌都沒有現場唱到!!DJ也完全沒有做功課, 都不知道打綠已經有廣播節目了,還建議他們應該來當DJ。然后打綠通知他們關于“空氣中的視聽與幻覺”后,那兩個‘可愛’的DJ竟然問“是全部一起上 嗎?”既然沒有聽過就不要裝成好像很厲害一樣。試想想,怎么可能六個人一起主持電臺節目?那不就太混亂、太沒有主題了嗎?

然后竟然也不知道紅包場和奇裝異服的表演是同樣一個。

最可笑的是,打綠必須離開直播室到唐城坊辦簽名會的時候,那兩個DJ竟然說“蘇打綠要上路了”。我差點沒有把我口中的水噴出來!現在是怎樣?要詛咒打綠去見閻羅王嗎?

當然有超級好笑的話題。比如說,因為其中一位DJ叫靈芝,打綠上場介紹自己的時候就說自己是甚麼人參啦,燕窩啦等等補品。家凱原來還是對榴蓮有些陰影….. 小威執意這里的漢堡王很不一樣…. 還有青峰和他的海南雞飯等等。爆笑!

活動2:唐城坊簽唱會
首先在大概下午4點多的時候,舞臺前面還有一整排的男生內褲大籃子,就大減價時拿來用的那種。那排籃子就在舞臺的正中間,甚至很靠近舞臺,根本只能擠兩排人。我本來想打綠是不是到最后得對著一堆內褲唱歌。好奇妙。還好報館的人來了,叫人把東西移走。
然后因為我和幾個朋友早早跑到樓上subway霸占他們的圓形看臺,在有一點距離但是沒有遮擋的地方看,又因為我們自己一批人馬可以玩自嗨!

晚上的現場主持人也是有點莫名其妙,口水多過茶。明明是簽唱會嘛,就讓打綠他們表演啦,不要一直說話了。然后起初打綠全部人都站在舞臺后面,我一直示意說移向前來可是太遠了,他們看不是很明白我的意思。可是這個主持人的責任啊!明明兩首歌的中間可以
提醒他們移向前來的呀!唉~~

還有真的,那些在樓下的歌迷很討厭,一直不停地拍照錄影。我還看到一個人拿著大炮機!!!!!有夠夸張的。我懷疑根本沒有幾個人在專心聽歌!夠了好不好!不要再拍了!也沒有人去阻止一下吼,真的是很糟。

最可笑的是,這個明明是第三張專輯的簽唱會,主持人竟然要求青峰唱小情歌。拜托啦!很奇怪好不好,這個又不是演唱會有很長的時間,這個是新專輯的簽唱會,干嘛唱舊歌?

然后一直訪問訪問訪問。可是訪問也沒有談到新專輯的任何東西。還把紅包場說成是臺南紅包場….. 真的搞不清楚狀況。結果我們樓上的不要臉的人在主持人訪問到一半的時候故意很大聲喊“唱歌!”青峰迅速轉過頭問“唱甚麼歌?”結果還是被主持人抓回去。

活動3:植物園表演
和活動2一樣的主持人。我一聽到是一樣的人我真的整個快抓狂。又會有白癡事情發生。果然。因為當天我們有一位議員攜帶家眷到現場看表演,結果介紹議員的時候沒有叫大家站起來迎接,可是請蘇打綠的時候卻要大家站起來迎接。這個真的很不識大體。還好這位
議員比較隨和,無所謂這種小事,還聽完全場3個樂團再走。

表演本身真的很棒。青峰的演唱power和團員的默契姆庸置疑吧,那我應該來說些不一樣,有笑點的東西。因為舞臺和觀眾席之間有個不算特別大的池塘,阿福一直說像侏羅紀公園然后青峰說怕我們這些坐在邊緣的朋友會掉下水,可是停頓了一秒之后又說,其實他“很期待”。

然后唱某首歌的一半的時候突然有一只魚從水里跳了出來,青峰嚇到的表情好好笑!后來還問我們有沒有看到那條魚?

就快要唱到預訂的最后一首歌的時候,青峰就問有沒有時間限制。主辦單位說沒有的時候大家都好嗨哦!可是有一個白癡主持人在臺后面一直重復encore,結果青峰受不了說“我都已經在臺上了。”這個點真的很好笑。我幾乎笑到掉入池塘。就明明喊encore就是拱回
到后臺的樂團再次出來,可是他們都沒有下臺,就不用喊encore,然他們繼續唱就可以了嘛。科科…..

青峰決定就唱4首歌當結尾,讓我們點歌。就是上面有板友po出的歌單的歌啦。最后一首『相信』之前,他再次介紹團員和閑聊一點。他問家凱這次沒有脫,還想拱他脫衣,問我們要不要看。我本身不是很想看到他的“胴體”,可是有某位“饑渴的女性”大喊‘脫
掉!’以上雙引號的都是青峰說的話。我是沒有看到那位“饑渴的女性”到底是誰啦,可是還蠻好笑的。

然后有人點蔡依林的『愛無赦』,青峰說沒有戴手套不能啦,然后竟然爆阿福的料,說他其實最喜歡模仿蔡依林的舞步。然后又攻擊小威,說他最厲害扮山東大妞。還說“其實他們比較娘,我私底下都很MAN的。”整個是好笑到……. 結論就是青峰還是很介意那個
在新加坡演唱會公然說他很娘的人。哈哈哈哈哈!太好笑了。

最后就是唱『相信』忘詞。第二句就凸槌….. 然后一直笑沒有辦法回神。當然后來還是有把歌好好唱完啦。

Please follow and like us:

Cha~Cha~Cha~!!

“Beauty World Cha Cha Cha!” “High Class, Low Class, NO CLASS!”

Who can forget these classic lines? Beauty World the musical has been with us 5 years after I was born. So 20 years after its creation, I was given complimentary tickets to watch.

Firstly, I don’t like the Esplanade Theatre. The stall seats are just as good as being on perfectly flat ground. It’s so steep that I was unable to see any action that was within 0.5m from the stage floor.. *grumbles*

I went in without any expectations of a good time actually.It was quite obvious to me before I stepped into the venue that it will not be good. It might pass, but it will not be one that stays with us for a long time. The cast list is pretty much good enough to tell all.

That said, I was fairly impressed by the set design. I thought it was intelligent and thought was actually put into the works and how the interchanging of the set flows with the rest of the play. There was a certain sense of period in the Beauty World cabaret style set but it could have been slightly better. The whole feel was more of a Moulin Rouge idea than 80s chinese cabaret. Slightly off but still good.

Lights was in general another good point in the play. Lulu’s follow-spotter was not very on-the-ball at times. There were a couple of spots that cleanly cuts a dark arc across the forehead. And that happened in scenes where she was supposed to be showing lots of emotion in her expression… A big waste that was actually. But I’m not really a lights person so I’m not really able to comment much on it..

Sound though, is a different thing. OH MY GAWD! I hated it, the sound cues, not the songs.. The band was placed at the back and on top of ALL the action. So much so that the conductor is totally unable to see the action on stage real life. He either had to use audio cues, or use his monitor which is super tiny. I know. I’ve seen it. I can’t see shit on that small little thing. So.. 90% of the sound cues were off. Especially the visual ones. Timing was horrible. Sometimes the music climax came after the actor had already paused in his act.. Like 3 seconds. Totally off. Bad.

Personally, and I think this applies to most industry people who watched the show, that the costumes were bad. It was totally off. I mean, this is a 80s Singapore Chinese cabaret, not Moulin Rouge. Yet 80% of the cabaret girls’ costumes were so Moulin Rouge, complete with sequins, glitter, shine, feathers, tassles all the works. *beep* Wrong era here. And my god the suits look like a really fashionable & modern cut! The only correct period costume was probably recycled from the old run. Which is Ah Hock, Ivy, Frankie & Rosemary’s. *shakes head*

My heart goes out to Daren Tan, really. He’s not a stage actor. He doesn’t even know how to act. Yet because of his fame as the winner of Project Superstar, he has to be thrown into this unfamiliar and really very unkind community. He simply can’t act. Not now. Not without training and experience. His singing is wrong. The wrong type of vocals. Pop singing and musical singing is really way off. Not everyone’s Pamela Oei or Gani. He was easily the worst of the lot, seriously. Not entirely his own fault but still… Reality sucks.

Elena, playing Ivy, really threw me off. She was much better than I had expected. Then again, she has the right musical theatre training as a foundation. She has the vocals and the potential. What she really lacks is the experience, which shows in her acting. There is a certain lack of sense of how you capture and enhance movements in accordance with the background music. For example, when she was sneaking around in Mummy’s room in her all-black catwoman suit, it would have been more interesting to see if she had followed the beat of the music. I’d like to use popping as a way to connect such movement acting. There’s always a certain place where you stop, usually at the hard beat itself. And the right amount of jerky actions combined with smooth moves accentuates what you are doing and makes your movements clearer. Plus you don’t have to do as many consecutive actions to get the same effect. And it looks better on stage. She really needs to work on her physical aspect.

Frankie, played by Dwayne Tan, was a lovely success. Totally without the image of Hossan Leong from the 1998 run and yet still endearing in his own way. “My a-ha-ha Ivy….” Didn’t know how it was apparently so hilarious that everyone had to laugh like mad dogs every time he sang that song. *grouchy*

The rest… Denise could have done better but the chemistry between her & the rest wasn’t there.. The showdown between Lulu & Rosemary was such a let down! Where is the vocal power????? Rosemary was tooooooo much Jacintha, she might as well have done it by herself. Irene Ang was hilarious as Ah Choo, spot on punch lines.. Swee Lin was charismatic as Mummy as well.. Ensemble was well, forgettable.

I wouldn’t pay to watch the show, even if it was S$10. But that’s just me. Someone else might have a different opinion.

Have you watched the play?

Please follow and like us:

蘇打綠 『無與倫比的美麗』 聽后感

2008年的第一個聽后感。蘇打綠的『無與倫比的美麗』。

我欣賞蘇打綠的最大原因是中提琴兼鋼琴手阿龔。他使蘇打綠出眾、使他們的音樂素質更上一層樓。青蜂的聲線及現場爆發力姆庸置疑,但是不可以否認,阿龔的古典音樂底子是蘇打綠最重要的財產。

2005年,《蘇打綠》的發行讓大家初步認識這個特別的樂團。
2006年,《小宇宙》中的“小情歌”把蘇打綠的名聲推得更高。
2007年,《無與倫比的美麗》奠定了他們在流行音樂的地位。

打綠來新加坡宣傳+演唱會的時候我曾經和友人說過,希望新專輯會有更多像“You are, You will” 的音樂。有多點華麗的弦樂,多點平常聽樂團聽不到的古典音樂,多點抒情的中提琴聲。《無與倫比的美麗》發行后,我后悔了。我后悔我忘了英文有一句話“Less is More”,后悔我夸口有更多弦樂一定更好,后悔我希望打綠離開純粹木吉他的音樂。

太多了。《無與倫比的美麗》有過多的弦樂。我第一次聽的時候,真的有照著青蜂說的,一個人在家,透過ipod、戴上大型耳機,靜靜地聆聽。可我從第一首歌就開始懷疑我是否在聽蘇打綠的專輯,還是阿龔X青蜂的專輯。我感覺不到其他人的存在。我聽不到家凱的電吉他,只有在“簡單生活”才忽然發現,阿福是存在的。小威的鼓也并沒有上一張的有特點。唯一讓我驚艷的是馨儀。我一直沒有特別注意到她,也因此沒有真正發現,其實她貝斯的技巧真的很好。有一兩首歌,有在和阿龔尬旋律的感覺。

可是蘇打綠不是只是阿龔和青蜂的。蘇打綠是屬于6個人的。為什么會變成這樣?每一個樂手都有自己的特色,而一個出色的樂團,就是要把這些人的特色集中在一起,并一同發揮化學作用,成就一首首動聽的歌曲。在《無與倫比的美麗》中,我卻沒有感受到。可能因為阿龔真的太強了,他的音樂風格充撤了整張專輯,根本沒有給人家呼吸的機會。專輯很有Gavin Mikhail的Piano Rock的風格,如果這個是蘇打綠要走的路,那我很遺憾這條路竟然在第三張專輯才有所眉目。我要聽到的蘇打綠是一個搖滾樂團,不是流行古典樂團體。如果要后者的話,我有很多其他的選擇,例如Vanessae Mae,Maksim, Bond。可是蘇打綠的特點是在于他們能夠很巧妙地結合二者,併造另外一種fusion的音樂風格。怎么前兩張好好的,第三張卻變成弦樂重奏?

老實說,最讓我失望的其實是家凱。我一直希望看到你電吉他的進步,我一直希望新專輯可以聽到你彈一些比“小宇宙”更有難度的solo。可是很可惜的,這份小小的愿望并沒有被實現。我聽了一次又一次,次次都在尋找你的蹤影,也次次被失望插上幾刀。

我承認。我是個純粹主義者。對很多事很堅持,也很固執。有時候甚至有點偏離理性的固執。但是我的固執我的冷眼旁觀,阻止我陷入盲目無謂的跟風陷阱里。

我不是音樂人。我也不會任何樂器。但是我相信我自己的耳朵。也許是我對蘇打綠有太大的期望了,但有愛才會有所期望。我不是普通的打粉,我不會花言巧語,不會在青蜂廣東話說得很爛的時候說他說得很標準,不會把他們說的話一字一句吞進肚子里,更不會刻意諂媚。我就是我。我就是那么一個討人厭的人。

我不敢對下一張有任何期許了,也不會在事前胡亂發表言論了。自打嘴巴很痛的。

 

Please follow and like us:

Maywa Denki

I watched the best show I’ve ever watched in my entire life. When I walked out of Concert Hall at Esplanade, I felt as if I could be knocked down by a car right that very moment and I’d be satisfied. I’d die without regrets, even if I had not achieved anything in my entire life.. I’d go without a second thought.

Maywa Denki. According to the website:

“Maywa Denki is an art unit produced by Nobumichi Tosa. It is named after the company his father used to run in bygone days. The costume is designed as a typical working uniform of Japanese electric stores, symbolising small/medium-sized enterprises that had once supported Japanese economy during its high-growth period. It’s unique style is indicated by a term he uses, for example, each piece of Maywa Denki’s work is called “a product” and a live performance or exhibition is held as “a product demonstration”. The products produced so far include “NAKI series”, fish motif nonsense machines, “TSUKUBA series”, original musical instruments, and “ARCLASSY series”, proposal of a lifestyle with Maywa Denki. Although Maywa Denki is known and appreciated as an artist, its promotion strategies are full of variety: exhibitions, live stages, performances, producting music, videos, writing, merchandising toys, stationery, and electric devices.”

The performance tonight was so full of fun, laughter, energy and absolute quirkiness that 1.5 hours just flew by as if only 5 mins had passed. It was that enjoyable.  Ours was the “TSUKABA series” so we saw a whole lot of DIY music equipment.. There were “Automatic Tap Dancing Shoes”, “Maywa Denki Dancers” from Taiwan who can only do the punching dance, “Singing Robot”, “Automatic Guitar” etc etc. There was a bass, an acoustic guitar, drums, electric guitar, saxophone/trumpet combination.. And everything is DIY. It’s all made up of parts here and there from all sorts of places. And the sound that these machines make, sound just like the real thing!!!!!

I was so impressed with the whole performance, with the commitment and the effort put into every single one of their machines. And that amidst that Tosa can still inject lots of humor into the entire performance to make it even more enjoyable. His charm and his charisma and his vibe of easy-goingness that totally endeared the entire thousand odd audience. I couldn’t take my eyes off him, cos everything that he was doing was so captivating, so… magnetic.

I’m not very good with words so it’s very hard for me to describe the concert. Just that FANTASTIC is a gross understatement.

A video montage of the TSUKABA series:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hnx3P2V4pRQ&hl=en&fs=1&]

And I bought this:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nxBK2EdRvh4]

In pastel blue. Spent S$80 on it.

Horrendously expensive, time is only told in Japanese and almost practically useless as a real watch.. But it’s just damn cool.

BUT. I think the total experience was absolutely worth it. Concert tickets = S$35. Zihotch = S$80. Total = S$115. 1.5 hours of pure entertainment. How can it not be worth my dough?

I’d pay double to watch it again.

Some youtube videos to let you experience!

They did this too at the concert!
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2q1hMe9hDrI&hl=en&fs=1&]

A music show:
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Gd4lc045ns&hl=en&fs=1&]

Please follow and like us:

Fay Grim

I’m crazy about this show. As well as Parker Posey.

Fay Grim is a single Mom from Woodside, Queens, is afraid her 14 year old son, Ned, will grow up to be like his father, Henry, who has been missing for seven years. Fay’s brother Simon is serving ten years in prison for aiding in Henry’s escape from the law. In the quiet of his cell, Simon has had time to think about the tumultuous years of Henry’s presence among them – chronicled in Hartley’s earlier film HENRY FOOL(1998). He has come to suspect that Henry was not the man he appeared to be. His suspicions are validated when the CIA asks Fay to travel to Paris to retrieve Henry’s property. Her mission turns into a sprawling con-game, pitching Fay deep into a world of international espionage.

OMG I wish I could somehow get my hands on ’98s HENRY FOOL. Pretty sure it will be amazingly good too.

Please follow and like us:

First Family – July 7, 2006

Show: First Family
Date: 7th July 2006
Venue: Drama Centre Theatre

Director/Playwright/Set Designer: Chong Tze Chien
Lighting Designer: Lim Woan Wen
Sound Designer: Darren Ng
Costume Designer: Lim Chin Huat
Crew: Goh Guat Kian, Low Kah Wei, Jean Ng, Karen Tan, Ong Kian Sin, Claire Devine, Oliver Chong, Ang Hui Bin, Julius Foo, Tan Beng Tian

———————————————————————————————–

It was a show about loyalty and betrayal, about putting country before family, about a family who was once the apple of the country’s eye but suddenly finds themselves embroiled in a dark conspiracy to destroy them and all that they’ve ever believed in.

The idea is fantastic but the execution was, sadly, not on par. It’s just like 2 perfect parents, conceiving a perfect baby but somehow during the 9-month pregnancy & the birth, something went wrong and the baby turned out not-so-perfect. It could have been the blockbuster of the theatre scene in 2006.

I couldn’t really put my finger down to the exact thing that went wrong. The nagging feeling is that this show might just be The Finger Players’ worst show to date, after its new direction. The direction was rather loose and there were too many unnecessary breaks and repetitions, trying to show that the “little one” was the more loved and most pampered one in the family. The game of ‘Eagle and the Chick’ was way too long and scenes like this really brings the whole tone of the play down and every time such a dip happens, it takes them double the effort to bring the play back to its original pace & energy level.

Sound was somewhat off the night I watched. I tend to give Darren quite a lot of grace. He works hard and he’s 5 men in 1, tackling 10,000 machines at the same time. However, one has to let go when one can. Handling the job of 5 men by oneself will not make a show better. It might just crash it. Time is the only factor.

Speaking of which, one personal qualm I have with Finger Players’ so far is that they have been using the same designers for the longest time. Woan Wen & Darren are great in their own capacities but as a theatre company, TFP needs to be working with new people and getting freshness in their shows. For someone like me who has watched almost all their main season productions, it’s slowly becoming the same. I can walk into a TFP show and feel that this show’s lights & sound is not very much different from the previous one. It’s the same reverb, the same style of wash and the entire feel of the whole show is nothing very new.

It may seem that I didn’t like the show at all but alas, the truth couldn’t be further. I have high expectations and First Family didn’t march up that’s all. It was still enjoyable and there were funny moments like how the Prince’s kungfu master ended up being a regular of the bordello that the Mother used to work, so she learned all his skills. As usual, the shadow puppets were amazing, best of which was the perfect scenery of the country. The market, temple all came to life when the prince alluded to them. The sea practically swept me away.

All in all, First Family, though a overly lengthy 2 hours, was still a good way to spent a lazy Friday night!

Please follow and like us:

Furthest North Deepest South – April 26, 2006

Since I cannot sleep and I have an hour before I’m supposed to wake Noel up.. (Hmm… the clock on my computer says 7.05am… hmmm) I should be writing about Furthest North Deepest South.

Twice I watched this play. I liked both. I mean.. how can I not. Similar cast, same director, same script… Well, I guess some technicalities were better with a more seasoned set of crew.

Here comes the big but. This 2nd run is, in my opinion, too bright and cheery. I’m not saying it has to be melancholy and somber and dreary but the one in 2004 was darker, with a serious message wrapped up in some form of satire.

I couldn’t sense a similar feel of tragedy in the 2nd run. FNDS is a tragedy. That was how I felt when I stepped out of the ACM 1.5 years ago. It was a freaking tragedy that was trying to be a comedy, which successfully brings out the most of the tragic. A possible reason could be that there were more students watching it this time round, (I should know. The night I watched was like 90-10 in favour of students) if it’s too satirical they would not understand? Or if it’s too somber they’d all fall asleep?

Couldn’t compare notes very much cos they group of people I watched with were first-timers to this show. Obviously they liked it quite a bit. Just as I did when I watched it for the first time. Nevertheless, I was able to find Rydwan who had watched the first run as well. He, just like me, preferred the 2004 version. Maybe, just maybe, like he said, I’ve grown up and I’m thinking of the show in a very different way.. And also maybe, I’m comparing it to the first run. Re-runs are never, in my humble opinion, better than the first.

Of course I have to say I still loved some moments and some directions. And of course, 1.5 years later, my fave is still the Rolls Royce ‘logo’ in front of the ship played by Ms Universe

SA. Hilarious. Too bad not many people enjoyed or even caught the joke.. Sigh… And of course, again I almost teared when Cheng Ho finally admitted that he is not really a man and that he had spent all his life trying to prove that he is a man and can only come to terms with it like when Zhu Di is killed. Sad. And how alike that is to everyone. We try oh so hard to be someone else. We are always trying to prove to ourselves that we are not who we are. How many people can actually say that they have accepted themselves 100%? No. We are always faulting ourselves, even if we know we shouldn’t. Not that the Singaporean education + work environment is very much of a help…

The gahment should watch this. They should stop supporting mindless brainless plainly entertaining shows like Sleeping Beauty where the main and the only aim is to please & get funding. Truly educational and inspiring shows get minimal or no funding. What crap logic is that..

Anyway, I just digressed.. That is for another time, another blog.

Please follow and like us:

Longhouse – Feb 15, 2006

If there was a word worse than ‘disastrous’, that’d be what I’d use to describe Longhouse. Everything was just wrong! Nothing went well in the show tonight. I really don’t know if I should give them a break cos it IS their first show and I, of all people, should know that opening shows are always screwed. Anyway, I have to start my bitching somewhere…

Set:
It wasn’t very impressive. Interesting concept of using unsymmetrical gridlines to make up doors, windows, mirrors and leaving quite a bit to the audience’s imagination. Most of the ‘furniture’ was made up of old newspaper stacks which was intriguing at first but not fully made use of. It would have been even more expressive and meaningful if the newspapers actually made up part of the journey of the characters and not just some other bed or table or sofa… The bonsai thing was too ridiculous. If more branches poked through the empty spaces in the grid during the big sister’s rather dreary monologue about the character in her book, it would have been more symbolic. It is currently very flat and is simply a backdrop.. A dropdown back drop might have worked for this purpose. And if the upstage part fo the grid was smaller, I feel the contrast would have been better when the characters walk from downstage up, where the mother’s room was supposed to be relatively.

Lights:
This is my biggest qualm of the entire play. I hate, absolutely HATE, plays with many blackouts. It spoils the rythmn of the whole piece, breaks the audience’s concentration and really cuts the flow of the story. And the lights are so unimaginative, no fun, no creativity at all. I can do just as well. What’s with the wash!? I feel as if I’m watching a Brechtian wannabe’s design work. This is definitely Dorothy’s worst work. Is Toy too poor to get coloured gels and moving lights and gobos???? At least some COLOUR would be appreciated. Something other than yellow and orange.

Sound:
I think the problem is with the operator. I don’t know if this op is new or what but the cue points were wrong, there was no feel for the play, the music didn’t build up correctly. It was either too fast or too slow. It was as if the op was either sleeping or retarded or has bad brain-hand coordination.

Cast:
Lines were fluffed and everyone overacted. Performance was over the top. Too much expression, too much angst too much everything. A little more subtlety would have greatly improved the overall enjoyability of the play. And I couldn’t catch 70% of what they were saying, especially the fighting parts.

Direction:
I’ve come to this conclusion that Nelson’s best for acting. That’s probably about it. And stage acting to be more specific. The play was too loose. The momentum builds up and drops suddenly, leaving the audience hanging in mid-air gasping for breath. Not always a bad thing, but not for this kind of play with a moving-forward timeline.

Script:
Some funny parts but that’s all. Boon Teck tries to be sarcastic and ‘suan’ the government and politics but it turns out too contrived, it’s like having constipation and trying too hard to shit. When you actually do shit it out, you bleed as well. He’s not a fantastic writer as it is and this script is not helping his reputation. He should just stick to set designing.

Please follow and like us:

The Promise – Dec 27, 2005

It was…. so predictably disappointing.. Cecilia Cheung was bad.. Just as I expected. Nicholas Tse made my eyes feel like falling off from too much rolling, as predicted. Story was damn lame, not that I thought it would be any better.

The show would have been much better in terms of asthetics if not for the excessive use of CGI. And by saying excessive, it’s by MY terms and not industry. In a Chen Kaige movie, excessive = a CGI petal falling for 1 min. THAT is excessive. I mean I love to watch sci-fi movies with lots of CGI effects. Hello? Look at Shrek. It was horrendously farnie! To the max! But this is a Chen Kaige movie! What’s CGI doing there? I’m a freaking purist I know but I can’t help it! This IS a Chen Kaige movie! I’ve been spoilt. The olden non-CGI days were better and he made better movies.. Like “Farewell My Concubine aka 霸王別姬”. THAT is asthetics.

Ok. I digress. Back to “The Promise”. Acting was generally bad. To be more exact, the acting of Nicholas & Cecilia was bad. The way Nic portrayed that rejected-by-a-girl-from-young-and-that-turned-him-a-little-mad guy was *ahem* terrible, and that is an understatement. Cecilia’s role’s perfect for her. The ‘perfect’ little concubine for the ‘perfect’ little vase. All she had to do was to be there looking vampy & pretty. Vampy she is. Pretty she’s not.

There were saviours of the show though. Hiroyuki Sanada, who played the General, was amazing! His acting was just right with just the correct amount of expression and emotion. Veteran really IS a vetaran. No wonder why Japanese serials are so much more popular. Their actors really can act.

But the one person I was most touched by, the ONLY one who made me shed tears… Liu Ye. OMFG! I totally couldn’t recognise him at all as the Ghost Wolf cos the character was disfigured in a fire and had his face covered most of the time. But but.. Amazing acting! His character forbade him to have much facial expressions and posture but his eyes… OMG his eyes told everything! All his regret, his bliss at redemption. It was all written in his expressive eyes! Now THAT’s what ruku calls ACTING!

Those vases should go learn something from all these world-class actors they always collaborate with. And not create bullshit news on the papers everyday. Go get some knowledge!

Please follow and like us:

Pulau – Mar 9, 2005

Aiyo… Suddenly I watch so many productions at a go. Watched Pulau with KC today. Written by How Wee & directed by Adrian Tan. Actors are Judy Ngo & Edric Hsu. Ok. Descriptions aside, here’s my set of comments.

I thought the show was ok. As in, it’s a very How Wee kind of play. Sparse, episodic and very all-over-the-place kind of style. Adrian did a semi-Brechtian. The set was a very simple circle of sand with a big screen behind and TVs at the two sides. The show was rated R(18) but alas, except for a few cheebyes and a couple of KNNs… That’s all. What R(18)?? All the sexual scenes were like Edric trying to take of Judy’s bra clasp which was so obviously a sports bra.. >< And Judy masturbating back-facing us. Ah-duh… I’ve seen more rated stuff than THAT.. Anyway, that’s not the issue.

The main thing was the talk-back session. About halfway through the session, I regretted hanging around. It totally spoilt the whole experience for me. There I was, slowly making sense and meaning out of what I had just seen and there people are asking about wanting answers to the questions raised in the play. The worst part was when Adrian said all about how he was doing a Beckett and how the columbarian was linked to the HDB flats he showed on multi-media (which I disliked tremendously) and how some of the parts were purposely made as a remembrance to KPK (not to be rude or disrespectful, but AGAIN????? ) I felt a sense of losing as I was listening to all these questions and “answers”. Instead of gaining some insight into the play, I felt as if I had lost the crux of the matter and the main issue and the strand of thought. I had been deprived of the ability to think for myself, to allow myself to discover new things about the play that may add to my appreciation of it. Alas, the talk-back session effectively killed all that.

Judy’s acting was not bad. Pretty good. But I hate it when she contorts her face when she’s crying. It feels too over-acting and very fakish to me. Edric, sad to say, was the weakest between the two fo them. He was very stiff and fluffed his lines, though fluffing lines can be due to nerves. He was not captivating and often when it’s his long speech alone, he makes me feel restless and distracted.

All that aside, it was fun meeting old friends there. Was amazed & amused to see Terence though (almost didn’t recognise him at first ‘cos didn’t expect him to be at a CHINESE play). Never thought he could understand chinese. Hur hur. And I saw Qing Shui (I think that’s his name…) which was a pleasant surprise ‘cos I hadn’t seen him since the AJ CLDDS Alumni performance I think.

Please follow and like us: