Anugerah Planet Muzik 2016 Media Conference…

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(Graphics poster courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

Due to my heavy work commitments last year, Anugerah Planet Muzik 2015 (APM2015) did not get a proper coverage be it in terms of my customary annual review as well as the usual promo leading up to the event in this domain of mine, even though I did share photographs of the Walk of the Stars and Red Carpet segments during the actual event night. I also did not attend the media conference held at Orchard Hotel when the organisers released the list of nominees back then. Hence I would like to apologise if any of you had waited for me to post them up but ended up not seeing any on this blogsite. I’ll try to make it up this year, which is why this particular post takes precedence, less than a fortnight before the event makes its long-awaited return. This year, Anugerah Planet Muzik 2016 (APM2016), debuts at the newly-opened Theatre @ Mediacorp at Stars Avenue on 30 September 2016.

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Fiza O and A B Shaik were the hosts of the media conference..

As with previous years, before the event proper, there will always be the traditional media conference to announce the nominees of the upcoming awards show. This year, the media conference was again held at the premises of Orchard Hotel on 20 July 2016 and was hosted by RIA 89.7FM‘s Fiza O and Warna 94.2FM‘s A B Shaik. Guests who mostly made up of local artistes, came to the event with high hopes of being nominated or at the very least, to soak in the atmosphere. For those still new to the scene, it was an eye-opening experience for them to just be in the same room as other household names, an opportunity for them to get to know one another and have mini networking sessions amongst themselves. Guests that day were also treated to performances by newbies Haikal Ali, Din Ilango and The Chapters, as well as Kalysa Aziz. All four displayed their worth on stage and personally, yours truly thoroughly enjoyed their respective performances.

apm2016-media-conference-055The panel consisting of Mr. Hassan Salleh, Assistant Vice-President (Malay Broadcast Division) & Manja Editor, Ms. Zakiah Halim, Chief of Malay Broadcast Division and Dr. Edmund Lam, Chief Executive Officer of COMPASS, addressing the audience on the experience of selecting the nominees as well as giving nuggets on what to expect in this year’s awards show.

Looking at the final list of nominees this year, I personally feel the local pool of talents were unfortunate not to receive more nominations especially in the regional categories. Last year, Iman’s League made the all-important breakthrough for the Singapore acts and won the Best Band (Regional) award over more established names like Noah, Sheila On 7, Akim & The Magistret and Bunkface. Many netizens especially those in Singapore wondered who they were and cried foul over their win. Personally I was disgusted by the reaction as I thought national pride would at least overcome any emotions over their own personal favourites. Iman’s League though they are quite under the radar here, they have since made inroads in other Asian countries like Korea and even Malaysia, albeit in the underground scene. Their win gave so much hope and inspiration for other acts to follow suit that anything is possible if the quality of song is on par with the other established regional acts.

apm2016-media-conference-012Strong support and attendance by our local pool of talents and representatives at the media conference…

This year, the organisers of APM2016 (Mediacorp Suria, Warna 94.2FM, RIA 89.7FM and Manja Magazine) received 420 nominations from the various music distributors and record labels from Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore. Nominees are not just solely from the three countries mentioned. Last year, the awards show received their very first nominees from Brunei (Aziz Harun) and Philippines (Mark Adam). This year, Shunpei Nakagawa became the very first Japanese to be nominated through his collaboration with Malaysia‘s Indah Ruhaila with their song “Aishiteru Selamanya” amongst the five nominees in the Best Collaboration (Artiste) category. Hark back to 2012 and you will note Cassidy Anderson from Australia as another nominee from outside the Nusantara region. As the name “Planet Muzik” implies, nominees from other countries are much welcomed. Speaking of Aziz Harun, he will be the third Bruneian after Faiz Nawi (2005) and Jazz Hayat (2013) to make a performance on the APM stage this coming 30th September 2016 (APM Wikipedia page admin please take note!!!).

apm2016-media-conference-074Haikal Ali‘s “Bertemu Kembali” is such a haunting hit, I will not be surprised if he bags either Best New Artiste (Male) or Best Singapore Song awards or even both. His appearances at all three media conferences for APM2016 (including in Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta) showed the organiser’s confidence in his potential…

I had a small chat with Ms. Zakiah Halim during the reception afterwards on what we can expect during the show as well as voicing out some of my doubts over the choice of venue for this year’s event. I had attended three shows already at the new venue earlier this year (“Anda Mahu Rok?“, Sinar Lebaran 2016 and Raya Oh Yeah!) and somehow the place does not give me good vibes in terms of seating arrangement and how much the stage and auditorium as a whole resembles a school hall setting. Without giving much away except for a coy smile and a twinkle in her eyes, Ms. Zakiah Halim only let on that they will do what they can to make the stage more accomodating both to the performers as well as audience. She did elaborate however, on the choice of performers this year. As you will note from the promotional poster, a bulk of the performers are not the same faces you see year in and out. In that respect, it is a refreshing change of line-up. And as always, amongst the performers, there will be deserving winners in their respective categories.

apm2016-media-conference-104Sufie Rashid, together with Taufik Batisah, are the two who got the most nominations amongst the local acts with six each…

Anyway, with less than a week to go before voting your favourites in the popular categories (local and regional) ends, let me just remind you to do the yeoman service for them and log on to Toggle.SG and vote before 23rd September 2016 23:59hrs. Every year you’ll get the sour grapes complaining about undeserving winners, but if you don’t vote, or expect others to do it for you, then you just have to suck it in when the final results are announced on the actual awards night. I did receive several invites via my personal inbox / private messages in my social media accounts from artistes who were nominated in the popular categories to either vote for them or help pitch in for them. I have to apologise that being a media outlet, I must be fair and neutral without showing any personal favours to anyone. What I just did was remind those reading this entry to go out and cast your votes for your respective favourites. I can only afford sufficient enough gesture like this as my way of helping.

apm2016-media-conference-024A group photograph with all the local artistes, representatives of record labels and artiste managements, sponsors and organisers of APM2016

Anugerah Planet Muzik 2016 is presented to you once again by One Drop Perfumes. Main sponsors are Pos T.K.I. and Sensuous By Shannz (Red Carpet event), Co-sponsors – House of Dre and Official Transportation by Uncle Sam Auto Trading Pte. Ltd. Official broadcasters as in previous years are Astro Ria and NET Mediatama Indonesia (NET TV). The awards show is supported by Media Development Authority (MDA) and Composers & Authors Society of Singapore (COMPASS) and is brought to you by Mediacorp Suria, Warna 94.2FM, RIA 89.7FM and Manja Magazine. The awards show will be telecast live via Mediacorp Suria on 30th September 2016 at 9:00pm. You can also catch the livestreaming of the show via Toggle.SG, which includes the Red Carpet event at 8:30pm, and will not be televised on Suria, or the simulcast via the two radio stations Warna 94.2FM and RIA 89.7FM.

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apm-2016-final-nominees-list-page-005(List of nominees courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

Sinar Lebaran 2016 Pre & Post-Event Snapshots…

sinar-lebaran-2016-3486The performing artistes of Sinar Lebaran 2016 (from left): Khairudin Samsudin, Huda Ali, Iskandar Ismail (Eiss), Fuad Rahman, Sarah Aqilah, Ziana Zain, Sezairi, Nurul Aini, Sufian Ahmad and Aisyaah Aziz

We’re in the final day of Tasyriq (three subsequent days after Eiduladha) and I thought it would still be fitting enough for me to share these long-held photographs during the night where Sinar Lebaran 2016 was recorded at the new Theatre @ Mediacorp situated at their new premises at Stars Avenue. Furthermore I was not invited to cover the recent recording of the Rayakustika programme, which was televised this past Hari Raya Haji holiday, so there seems to be a void somehow of Eid-related stuff. Anyway, I seldom post photographs of Sinar Lebaran recordings over the years so all the more I saw the need to share them. Since I had promised more stuff to be shared on my blog a few days ago, this post is dedicated to featuring some of the celebrity guests who had attended the Sinar Lebaran 2016 recording on 28 May 2016. Enjoy!!!

#ThePouponsWed Marriage Solemnisation Ceremony…

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Bilal Guillaume Jeanpierre & Nadiah M. Din

This domain has been “dead” for slightly over four months and frankly speaking, there were times I felt like just calling it a day, such is my daily commitments taking up so much of my time that blogging is the last thing on my mind. But in between I still continue getting invites to shows, album launches and even invitations to cover celebrity wedding events. I will not make any promises about posting them all, but I will definitely try to, moreso since my favourite annual event, Anugerah Planet Muzik, is just around the corner. Well, speaking of covering celebrity wedding events, my comeback post is on the marriage solemnisation ceremony of local actress-host Nadiah M. Din and Bilal Guillaume Jeanpierre held at The Colonial @ Scotts on 14 August 2016.

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The bride looking splendour in her outfit by Fatimah Mohsin

I had gotten the invitation to cover their upcoming momentous event (their wedding reception is in December 2016) way back in December 2015, a good one year ahead. But the solemnisation ceremony was only brought to my attention by our celebrity bride some two to three months ago when I met her at an event. I usually do not sacrifice my weekly Sunday evening football sessions unless it is for something dire, but I had given my word in advance, plus the fact that this was a God-willing, once-in-a-lifetime event for our lovely couple, hence I could go without playing for just one weekend. Anyway, Nadiah was the one who sought my contact and personally contacted me to cover her event. It is difficult to say “No” when one has added that kind of personal touch.

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Nadiah‘s elder brother, Ahmad Ghazali, reciting a short supplication for the newly-weds and invoking blessings for the guests and event…

I will not relate much about the marriage solemnisation ceremony as you would have probably read what transpired from the mainstream media days after the event or even watched it via live streaming on the day itself, only the second local Malay celebrity to have done it after Syarif and Malaque Mahdaly back in November 2014. What struck me during the event was how much love the couple had, not only for one another but also the people close to them. Bilal, even though he did not get the opportunity to get to know Nadiah‘s late father, Allahyarham Mohammad Din Mohammad, went out of his way in his thank you speech to ask the guests to recite a short supplication for his departed soul, a gesture that highlighted what a big-hearted person he is.

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Bilal reciting the all-important marriage vows (Akad) with Ahmad Ghazali giving away his sister’s hand in marriage…

I was surprised that Bilal, being a non-celebrity, did a lot of the talking in their joint speech, mostly expressing his gratitude to Nadiah‘s family and relatives for accepting him with open arms right from the start. With his good looks, charm, sincere mannerisms and soft-spoken nature, it is easy to see why Nadiah fell head over heels with him. I would too if I was a lady. I actually had the opportunity to speak with him for the first time during the recent Hari Raya Aidilfitri festivities when we bumped into one another at Norfasarie and Baihakki Khaizan‘s housewarming event. There, I was able to get to know the man first hand and he was curious with this blogging aspect of my hobby. If the first meeting left a good lasting impression of him, the second one during the solemnisation ceremony only entrenched the positive feeling further.

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The newly-wedded couple displaying their wedding rings on their fingers…

The solemnisation ceremony was attended by about 150 guests, mostly family members and close friends, as well as representatives from the media in Singapore and Malaysia. Nadiah‘s hand in marriage was given away by her elder brother, Mr. Ahmad Ghazali and the ceremony was solemnised and officiated by Ustaz Syakir Pasuni. For the record, RIA 89.7FM‘s Fiza O hosted the event and amongst the local personalities who attended were fashion designer Lulu Alhadad, Munah Bagharib, Lydia Izzati and Cheryl Wee. The latter three mentioned were also amongst the five maids-of-honour of the bride. Akrab Kompang Services provided the recitations of the Selawat just before the close of the ceremony to cap off a befitting end. And of course, the bride and groom donned outfits specially designed by none other than celebrity make-up artiste Fatimah Mohsin.

thepouponswed 486The newly-wedded couple with Nadiah‘s immediate family members…

Before I end off this entry, I would just like to congratulate our newly betrothed couple Nadiah & Bilal once again on embarking on this new chapter of their lives as man and wife. May the blessings of the Almighty be their guiding light in this journey till eternity and beyond. Thank you for kindly inviting me and family to this momentous event!!! Also my heartiest congratulations to bro Aliff Aziz and Bella Astillah who solemnised their marriage this past Friday 9 September 2016!!! To my Muslim readers, I wish you Eid Mubarak. May Allah accept our deeds and shower us with blessings in abundance… 🙂

Snapshots of #thepouponswed Solemnisation Ceremony