1 Mar 2011, UCC
I attended “Fiesta Rondalla 2011”, a concert by the NUS Rondalla conducted by old friend Joe Peters. Joe started this orchestra after studying in thePhilippinesand it’s survived three decades. The orchestra featured Peranakan singers from the Gunung Sayang Association. Such a pleasant evening! I felt so glad that Esso was still supporting musical events, in this case, the “ExxonMobil Campus Concerts”. Esso sponsored the Ministry of Culture’s National Music Competition and other musical events in the 80s.
17 Mar, 2011
I saw The Practice Theatre’s “Ai” about the romance between a terminally-ill 70 year old man and his care-giver fromChinaand their struggle to win the approval of his suspicious family. Written by Raymond To and sensitively directed by Wong May Lan, the play addressed a relevant issue as our community ages.
24 Mar 2011, National Library Drama Centre
I saw Stages’ “H is for Hantu: the Musical” which was written and directed by Jonathan Lim with music by Bang Wenfu. The musical rode the local myth of the Pontianak. Threatened by resettlement of the last kampong inSingapore,Pontianakplots with kampong folks to war off the inevitable. Melodic tunes, witty lines and clever use of puppetry made it fun to watch while conveying a serious message about relocation and dislocation.
25 Mar 2011, Living Room Art House
Sweet, much-loved-by-Jon Tammy Wong is determined “not to be still wearing leeotards at 40!”. With support from the Arts House and trusted published Ethos Books, she has reinvented herself into an author. Her first book “A is for Achar, L is for Love” which commemorates the life and cooking prowess of her beloved late 94-year old “po-po” will be launched next week. On 23 Mar, Tammy read excerpts from the book to piano accompaniment by Shane Thio. It was a very poetic afternoon as Tammy shared her warm memories of po-po and recipes which no doubt buyers of the book will rush into their kitchen to try out. I can’t wait for my copies!
25 Mar 2011, Art House Play Den
“Shades” written by Alia Bano and directed by Claire Devine of Buds Theatre Company had far more serious undertones. A modern Muslim girl working in theMiddle Eastfalls in love with a local Muslim and has to choose between being true to herself or changing to meet the expectations of his family. She opts for the more painful decision, realizing that it will not work out. There are inter-cultural differences even between two individuals practising the same religion.
30 Mar, Art House
Saw Musical Theatre Limited’s “Casino The Musical” (Concert Style; 90mins) written by composer Dr Ken Lyen and writer Richard Lord. The casino is a metaphor for the financial stock-broking world. A devilish character luresEverettinto the high-stakes world of the Big Casino on the promise of quick wins, \in order to win his own bet on whether Everitt would succumb / survive it as it all melts down. It was a witty and entertaining production.
31 Mar 2011,
Watched (AGOP) A Group of People’s “A Note went off in my Head”. GOP is a two year collective that has made great strides in its short life and won accolades at the annual Life Theatre Awards.