Pesta Perdana 11 Pre & Post-Show Reception Photographs…

After such a heady month of March where this blog had a post at a rate of every other day, it’s back to its normal hiatus stage. For those of you hoping to view photographs of the recent Rock Elektra event or wanting to read the latest happenings during the Anugerah 2011 auditions held at East Point Mall over the weekend before last in this blog, I have to apologise first and foremost cos I did not attend either events due to more pressing issues at work and at home. I would have loved to attend the latter to see the talents and potentials on offer but alas my schedule was a bit too tight for me to bring to you what went on over at East Point Mall. I know the topic of Pesta Perdana 11 is kinda stale by now, but I did plan a three-parter posting on it, with this being the icing on the cake. Since I did not attend Rock Elektra and the Anugerah 2011 auditions this past weekend, I hope this posting would more than make up for it and acts as a filler. The photographs are a selected few I’ve chosen for your viewing, since only my Facebook contacts are able to view the whole collection…

Roving host & Anugerah Skrin 2010 winner, Syirah Jusni looking splendour…

SleeQ and Fauzie Laily with Berita Harian‘s Entertainment Correspondent, Ms Hanim Mohd Saleh

One word to describe Azzah Fariha Samat & Silver Ang: Beautiful…

I will never fail to laugh in the presence of these natural comedians – Sufian Ahmad & Junaidi Sali

Renowned theatre activists, the husband-and-wife team of Haryani Othman & Khairul Famy Kassim…

Anugerah Skrin alumnus Shahril Kahar, Junaidi Sali & Erwin Shah Dawson…

“Slick” is the word to describe Helmindra J. A. Halim, Nick Mikhail & Fauzie Laily

Without them, our comedy scene is a tad poorer. From left: M. Saffri  A. Manaf, B.J. Kadir, Hamzah Adon (striped shirt), Zainal Ihim, Hussin Saaban & Mahadi Shor…

The faceless character in Kopi Bujang, Effandy Idris and wife Sabrina Ali

My uncle, Jasmani Basri, who came alone that night surprisingly…

Nadiah Mohammad with Erwin… They represent the future…

My favourite couple: Den Sabari and Huda Ali

Silver Ang, her chaperone and Sufiyan Safee

Award-winning stylist and director, Azni Samdin (right) with a friend…

Osman Sulaiman and Shahril Wahid did not win anything that night but they were winners in their own rights…

Broadcast journalist Raudha Osman, Shenthy Feliziana and Nadiah Mohammad

The VVIPs of the event…

The star of Delicatessen, Sufiyan Safee

Best Actor Award recipient, Rafaat Hamzah, revel in his win…

Two beautiful ladies – Sharon Ismail & Rilla Melati

The smile says it all… Congrats Fauzie… You definitely earned it…

A face not seen on our local television screens in a long, long while – Nuraliza Osman

Anugerah Skrin 2010 mentors Seri Wahyuni Jaes & Sani Hussin…

Shahridzuan Selamat and his good friend Sabreena

Another deserving winner – Nurul Aini

Mastura Ahmad along with Eaglevision‘s Netty Fiona, an unsung heroine behind the scenes…

Hyrul Anuar and ex-official blogger of the Singapore Idol 3 season, Budi Iskandar… Nice get-up guys…

Nurul posing with beloved husband Sofian Roslan


Another shot of my favourite couple…

Riz Sunawan clowning around with Keatar H M and Hamzah Adon…

The good people at Mediacorp Suria, Siti Zuraidah, Raudaa Razak and Budi Iskandar

The league of winners – Rosita Hussin, Suhaimi Yusof, Sharon Ismail and Sani Hussin

Fauzie and Nurul rounding off the winners’ league…

 

 

 

 

 

Anugerah Skrin 2010 Variety Episode 9 Recap…

Since the competition’s inception on 4th May 2010 till we reached its semi-final stage this past Friday, we have finally come to its penultimate week. Somehow it felt just like yesterday that I was getting to know the twenty-four hopefuls who would one day be the next big thing to grace our television screens and now here we are awaiting for the day that new winners would be crowned in both the Male and Female categories of Anugerah Skrin 2010. Nine weeks of competition, nine weeks of watching and seeing each contestant growing from strength to strength or falling by the wayside.

Kudos to Shahril Kahar, Firuz Khan, Erwin Shah Dawson, Diana Amran, Syirah Jusni and Halimah Yahaya for reaching the Grand Finals. Looking at their respective pedigrees and potentials, it is clear that the three young ladies’ have been somewhat consistent and have the necessary package to make it in the industry. For the other three gentlemen, I thought Firuz and Erwin were a relative shoo-in as both have seldom (or in Firuz‘s case, never) been placed amongst the bottom few contestants weekly. It was 50-50 between Shahril and Fadzli and I for one had a tough time deciding who was more deserving, till the contestants were asked to switch over during the announcement of results. It might have been nail-biting to some but perhaps the finalists were a fair reflection of each individual’s potential and probable worth they could offer in the long run.

This past week, Rafaat Hamzah, no stranger to Anugerah Skrin as he was one of the resident judges in the first edition back in 2006, was the guest judge. He admitted that he had not had the opportunity to watch this season’s competition as he had wanted to experience an element of surprise. Indeed up till the semi-final rounds, he is surprised that he has not seen a natural performance from any one of the contestants. What he observed were not reflections of how a human being communicate and react in every day life. He stressed on the need for the contestants to learn more and know how a human being reacts, and to widen their knowledge of acting and drama.

Repeating what he had told the first batch of Anugerah Skrin contestants back in 2006, Rafaat said that it doesn’t matter who wins but who is still standing in five to ten years time. Again stressing on the need for them to enrich themselves, he urged all of them not to rest on their laurels and to enrol themselves in workshops or at the very least find an experienced actor / actress / mentor they could tutor and learn the ropes from. He hailed Sani Hussin and Sri Wahyuni Jaes as good mentors they could have learnt from throughout the course of the competition.

The other two resident judges were relatively kind with their remarks this week. Khairudin Samsudin (Khai) admitted that it was a challenge for the contestants to add on and merged two more minutes of their own thought-out script into the one already given to them, and it was difficult for the judges to assess them as the performance level also increased. However, he only gave props to Group 2 for their smooth flow in delivery and flow of emotions whereas Groups 1 & 3 were patchy at best.

We say goodbye and thank you to Aziela Roza, Sakinah Rahim, Fadzli Mohamad and Raja Razie for reaching as far as the semi-finals and providing stiff competition to the remaining finalists…

Rilla Melati also noted that there were improvements made, but cautioned that the next assessment would be more focused on how the contestants would react to performing in front of a live audience. They need to understand what the audience and the viewers at home expect and want to see as watching it live as opposed to seeing it from the comfort of one’s own couch is totally different. Adding on, she said that whoever is chosen to go to the Grand Finals, their lives would be different after the competition ends. Through all the glitz, glamour and fame, they would do well to leave a space for reality as that will bring them further in this cut-throat industry. They would not and might not be rich, instantly or perhaps even in the long run, but what is most important is that they project themselves as good role models for others to emulate. And that is why I say it again that Rilla is my favourite judge this season for all her thought-provoking views.

Tomorrow night is THE night where the winners will be announced and even the vanquished would perhaps be fortunate to be invited to sign on to join the stable of Suria‘s Artiste Management Unit (P.S. I could be wrong with this fact though). Even though there are still a lot of cynics out there who have yet to be convinced by the six finalists, especially with regards to their potential and promise, lets just enjoy the finals and who knows, they might surprise us all by being better actors live than from what we see through their weekly recorded drama segments.

Highlights From This Past Week

Sleeq opening the show with their latest single “Untuk Dia“…

Eliminated Contestants Nissa Bahruddin, Nur Nasir & Aidil Jufri lending their moral support to the semi-finalists…

Likewise Ariff Salleh, Jasmine Amira, Muhammad Fahmy & Sarah Anissa

And last but not least, our kind mentors, Sani Hussin & Seri Wahyuni Jaes

Congratulations to the six finalists!!! (Photo courtesy of Mediacorp Suria)

Anugerah Skrin 2010 Variety Episode 8 Recap…

With just less than a fortnight away to crowning the next big thing in our local Malay entertainment scene, Anugerah Skrin 2010 saw another two contestants from the remaining twelve, being eliminated this past week. The recent week was also the quarter-finals round of the competition. As in weeks gone by, there was another guest judge for this particular round and she was none other than Era Faridah, otherwise known as “Kak Fid” / “Cik Sal Boleh“. For the record, the ones eliminated this week were Biwa Mastura and Muhammad Dzar. Let’s see what the judges have to say on the contestants this past week.

Khairudin Samsudin (Khai) personally felt that the progress of the contestants, or lack thereof, was extremely disappointing because at this stage of the competition, a lot of things could have been done to explore on their respective roles given. The contestants had gone through sessions with their mentors and workshops conducted for them but they seemed to not make full use of their time properly. He said that he was swarmed with comments that this year’s batch of contestants pale in comparison with their 2006 counterparts and hoped that those who still remain in the competition would prove the doubters wrong.

Rilla Melati noted that some progress was made especially seen by Raja Razie‘s performance. But as quickly as she had given praise, she went on the offensive and chided some of the contestants who it seemed were being overconfident that they could get by just by relying on their looks. Singling Erwin Dawson out, she felt that his acting is still raw and that a lot of rough edges need to be smoothened. She had likened Erwin as the male equivalent of Rima Melati Adams, someone whose good looks and commercial values are a casting director’s dream for any television channel / medium, but to reach that level, he has to buck up and back it up with assured and convincing performances in future.

Even though Era Faridah did not say much in the first round, she did take time to praise Firuz Khan for his perseverence in continuing to pursue his dreams as an artiste (he is afterall a serial contestant in past Anugerah competitions). She gave useful advice towards the end and said that glamour will come through hard work. From what she observed, they need to remain focused, be comfortable with their roles and not be selfish. I believe these are factors that have been drummed throughout the competition but somehow failing to register on some of them. Thanking the mentors for their guidance towards the contestants, she closed her speech by telling the contestants to never take advantage of their looks and to always project a positive working attitude.

Was I surprised by the eliminations??? In most ways yes, as I had at least expected Dzar to be one of the three male finalists. As for Biwa, I felt that based on her performances throughout the competition, she was at least good enough for another week. But like some of those who were previously eliminated, I wasn’t feeling too sad for them as I feel that they have done enough to show that they have something to offer to our industry in the years to come. Biwa with her theatre background, could only improve on her acting through experience and learning more from her peers as well as through her curriculum.

As for Dzar, I am suitably impressed when I heard him during the contestants’ weekly on-air promotions on RIA 89.7FM. He is extremely comfortable and fluent conversing in our mother tongue, a rare trait to have in our younger generation these days, and he has a natural flair for hosting as witnessed during the Anugerah Skrin Roadshow a fortnight ago at East Point Mall. Coupled with the fact that he has what one might term as a “radio voice“, I had encouraged him a few weeks ago to go for a voice audition if the opportunity arises in future and now with his elimination, I really do hope that he would make use of his God-given talents to pursue another avenue. I already foresee him as the heir to helming the Misteri Jam 12 (MJ12) show and I definitely won’t mind sharing a working relationship with him, as much as I enjoy assisting KC updating the official MJ12 blog from time to time.

This coming week, Anugerah Skrin 2010 reaches its semi-final stage whereby things will be doubly harsh, in that out of the remaining ten who will be fighting for the final slots, four will be eliminated. Who will they be??? Before the results are known,  don’t forget to tune in the Drama Episode tomorrow on Mediacorp Suria at 8:30pm or catch the repeat on Wednesday at 11:00pm.

Highlights of the Episode

Before the show, the audience was laughing along…

To Dyn Norahim‘s jokes…

The eliminated contestants along with mentor Sri Wahyuni Jaes…

Syed Azmir who just turned 26 last Saturday, debuted his latest single “Jalan Terus“, which was composed by none other than the creative duo from Sleeq

Syirah will never fail to look out for my camera… 😛 By the way, the eerie coincidence returned again this past week when I realised both eliminated contestants had to pair up here.

Safe for another week at least. Could they also be the possible finalists???

Anugerah Skrin Drama Episode 4 Recap…

Anugerah Skrin made its return on our television screens again this past Tuesday night with Group B taking centrestage and Group A resting for the week. Based on the first round a fortnight ago, it was noted that Group B had a stronger ensemble of potential actors, with all due respect to Group A, but it remained to be seen if they could keep the momentum going or if they would be lulled into complacency this week. And so, without further ado, I’ll zero in straight into each of their performances.

Nasriah ZainuddinNasriah played the role of a very concerned friend in the group but somehow at times, she appeared like a teacher / mentor. Nothing wrong with that actually, just that she came off a wee bit authoritative. Like the previous round, I kinda attribute that to her naturally stern voice. But other than that, I thought she did herself no further harm by keeping things simple and how the role called for her to be.

Aidil Jufri – The previous round, Aidil played the role of the jealous and overpossessive boyfriend to a mixed reaction, no thanks to his jitters and the inconsistencies of his emotions. This week, he was a picture of calm and since he was asked to play the role of the stubborn and cocky guy, he did it without much fuss and I thought he pulled it off extremely well.

Jasmine AmiraJasmine‘s previous performance disturbed me a lot, simply because she wasn’t focused and did not display the necessary balance between voice projection and emotions. This week, I felt there were two sides to her performance. The first half was peppered with a bit of overacting on her part with regards to her eye movements. But the second half was perhaps what made the judges chose her to be in the Top 24 in the first place. In short, she grew in confidence as the scene went on.

Ariff Salleh – The leader of the pack in the scene. Mr Namesake is beginning to give me a lot of good vibes, not just because we share the same name. For the second time, he showed a lot of understanding of what the role required of him. His execution and delivery was immaculate and it was difficult to find any flaws in his performance. He certainly heeded the call from the judges a fortnight ago, to not overact with his facial expressions.

Group 1 – Collectively as a unit, the group could be proud of themselves that their performance was credible to say the least. My only grouse is that the script could have been a bit more realistic. When Aidil‘s character talked about smoking “sheesha” by the tree in the middle of what appears to be a forest, I thought it came across as a bit of nonsensical. It would also help the two young ladies that their make-up was kept as minimal as posibble since they were supposed to be perspiring from all the trekking done. And as pointed out by one of the viewers who sms-ed during the show, it wasn’t realistic that Nasriah was wearing her tudung so nicely for such an adventure scene.

Syirah Jusni – During the last round, the complaint I had was on Syirah being limited to a bit-part role. This time, she was given a heavier responsibility and continuing from where she had left us wanting more, she did not disappoint and nailed her character with such aplomb, so much so that I personally feel that if she did not make it to the Grand Finals, it would be an extreme catastrophe. But I wouldn’t want to jinx Syirah with my predictions and I certainly hope my words would not bring bad luck to her. If one is able to hate her for this role, then she definitely has done an excellent job.

Erwin Shah Dawson – I loved his introduction during the start, which showcased his likeable personality that I had pointed out two weeks ago. But the role he played required us to hate him. Though he did well when he was interacting with Syirah at the start, his tone of voice and facial expressions betrayed him when he turned to engage Diana. From someone who was supposed to be devious, he actually softened his expressions and came off like a concerned friend when he and Syirah found out that Diana had overheard their conversation. But to be fair, he atoned for it in the second half of the scene.

Diana Amran – One of the better performers seen thus far. However I personally felt that there was a slight drop in her level of performance this week, though the drop was very much minimal, perhaps due to the script, which I will delve a bit more in the next paragraph. Diana is another that I expect to see gracing the Grand Finals, bar any unexpected surprises, cos this competition has turned out to be very unpredictable at such an early stage, looking at some of those already eliminated. 

Group 2 – Like Group 1, they deserved to be commended for creating a situation where it was tensed from the word “go” right all the way till the end. Again the script could have been better cos I simply couldn’t find a more logical enough reason for not killing Diana‘s character just because her mum was frail & ill. That particular line I felt made Diana‘s performance level dropped a bit, analysing through her tone of voice and facial expressions.  This group also appeared more convincing when they were interacting face-to-face than interacting with all three in the picture.

Firuz Khan – For the second time, Firuz was given a role which called for him to be angry. He was however made to be on the receiving end of a tongue-lashing by Fadzli‘s character. An angry Firuz is a joy to watch, cos he does play the role well, complete with eyes widening and tone of voice that matched his emotions. However he has to be careful when it comes to playing the sad role. I thought his performance level went down a bit the moment he started talking about his family towards the end of the scene. His wistful expression needs to be even more convincing than what he had portrayed, but generally Firuz was good.

Aziela RozaRoza was another one who was unfocused the last time we saw her in action. Playing the mediator role between the other two protagonists, she delivered her role without much fuss. I thought the part where she brushed her arms and legs as though she was bitten by mosquitos made it look like it was natural. Well it might well have been the actual case, seeing the surroundings where they filmed the scene. Hearing her speak feels like listening to Fadhilah Samsudin of Erwin Montel fame cos their voices sound so similar.

Fadzli Mohammad – Mediocre in the last round, Fadzli redeemed himself well this time as the angsty member of the group who was always finding fault with the other two characters. When he was angry, his assertive voice, facial expressions and hand gestures were spot-on. But I feel that his performance dropped when he cooled down towards the end of the scene. The trip-and-fall sequence could also have been more realistic. As mentor Seri Wahyuni had said, when the time calls for them to get down and dirty, they have to do it impeccably or at least with more conviction.

Group 3 – I thought that the first part was much better than the second one cos one could feel the frustrations brewing within the three characters. Though the heartwarming part at the end was almost as good, I just feel something was missing, that element of conviction. But still, they could rest on the fact that their chemistry was good and the energy exchanged between them heightened our expectations on what was to be expected next in the scene. The scene however came off a bit anti-climatic, but this wasn’t the fault of the three characters.

More or less the groups were almost equally balanced this week and I’m sure there would be some tough decisions to be made. Towards the end of the show, Seri Wahyuni mentioned about the contestants being affected by comments made by the jury as well as others, which I felt was a bit ironic as I did mention in the last entry that they should receive criticisms, positive and negative in their stride. Comments made by the judges as well as those from others I do not believe were personal but very much objective and constructive. So they should not worry but instead work on their flaws. Every single week of staying in the competition is an opportunity to better themselves. I leave you now with clips of both male and female contestants from Group B, promoting their voting codes for this week.

Fadzli and Erwin were missing in action in this clip as they had other commitments, but here’s their codes again – 10 & 6 – respectively…

And Huda Ali made a cameo appearance at the end…

Anugerah Skrin 2010 Variety Episode 2 Recap…

GUTTED – This one word summed up my feelings on a night whereby I had presumed that separating the cream of the crop from the mediocre would be quite simple and hoping that from previous reality show experiences, the voting public would be wise and mature enough to gauge who deserved to go through and who did not. While I did predict that Mohamed Nur‘s position was precarious alongside Muhammad Fahmy and Mohamad Idris, based on their performances during the first drama episode, I certainly did not expect one of the, if not THE, best performer i.e. Siti Aisyah to be eliminated so soon.

Which goes to show that even when someone performs to or close to his / her potential, they are not considered definite shoo-ins with the voting public having a lot of say at the end of the day and that was what happened when I spoke to a few of the production team afterwards. Remember what I said in the last entry that you should “vote for those with real talents, not because they are cute, pretty, handsome or related to you. We too have the responsibility to lift our local acting standards through the votes we make to the rightful and deserving contestants. Remember, your personal favourites might one day represent us in drama series or movies through regional tie-ups and you would do well to vote wisely and not subject them and our industry to embarrassment in future if they were to come up short…“??? Please exercise your votes correctly…

 

The eliminated – Mohamed Nur and Siti Aisyah

Honestly if you ask me, none of the ladies deserved to go out this past week, even if I had wildly predicted that Mariah Mahfar would be the one to be eliminated. Two of them who made up the bottom three, Halimah Yahaya & Sakinah Rahim, as I had mentioned before, had limited lines during their respective segments and had relatively easier characters to play with, which did not require them to go out of their comfort zones. While it is a relief that their journey did not end, the same could not be said of Siti Aisyah, who made a good impression in her angsty role. All the more I feel that it is an extreme pity for her, as unlike previous Anugerah competitions, there will be no Wildcard rounds this time round for the previously eliminated to be resurrected. I hope I am wrong and that the producers would have some surprises up their sleeves to keep the spirit and interest in this season’s competition going. Maybe they would if future weeks turn out like this.

Seven of the Group B contestants who came to give their counterparts moral support from the stands. From left: Ariff Salleh, Aziela Roza, Nasriah Zainuddin, Erwin Shah Dawson, Syirah Jusni, Aidil Jufri and Diana Amran

After the results were out, I went over to the Group B contestants seated a few rows in front of me who will duke it out next week, some of whom looked quite shakened by the results, and wondered if their fates would go the same route as Aisyah & Nur. I reminded those that I managed to talk to, that sometimes that proving themselves as credible actors is not enough, neither would them being good-lookers. They have to work on their likeability factor when they have those precious few seconds to talk about themselves to the cameras as a prelude to their acting segments. Yes this is a very brutal competition. What comes out from your mouths, what is expressed on your faces can sometimes be misinterpreted by the watching public, which could either gain you supporters or make them turn against you. Though I did not get the chance to share this with Group A, I know they would be reading this and take heed the next time they go into battle.

Huda Ali getting the perspectives of the judges…

Personally I feel the short half hour live variety show is a bit rushed. I would prefer this to be an hour long programme, with the extra minutes dedicated to the panel of judges zooming in at each individual contestant’s good and bad points during their acting segments, pointing out how they could improve, what improvisations they could have made, rather than subject the show’s hosts to read selected one-liners from the judges’ revered opinions. In any reality show, the judges wise words add colour to it and with some of them, what they say would either be remembered or be a source for debate. I think it is a pity that with all the experience that Rilla Melati and Khairudin Samsudin have since they were child stars, their skills are not imparted and shared to the public as well. Even the guest judge for the week would have lots to share. Why I feel this way is because young upstarts who aspire to be in the industry would use the programme as a source for knowledge in time to come and work on it for the time being. Yes I know the mentors would have shared what could have been done to the contestants off-camera, but it is also good to hear other perspectives and sharing it with the masses…

Tengku Adil performing “Mariam“, a tribute to The New Paper‘s 2001 New Face of the Year winner Mariam Daskalapolou

But for all the apparent gripes I have, I should commend the producers for using our local acts to entertain viewers and at the same time promote their latest singles / albums. Tengku Adil, an Anugerah 2003 alumnus and quite the under-rated performer in our local Malay music industry, was given the honour to open the show with his song “Cinta Dia” and performed his current single “Mariam” towards the end of it. I was disappointed I wasn’t able to attend the official launch of Adil‘s single last week at Earshot Cafe situated at the Art House @ Old Parliament Building, no thanks to my reservist commitments to the nation. Seeing him perform live last night made up for what I missed the other day. And so, the stage is now set for Group B to show us what they are made of. Tune in to Anugerah Skrin Drama Episode 2 on Tuesday 11th May 2010 at 8:30pm only on Mediacorp Suria

Other Highlights of the Night

Dyn Norahim, the pre-show host…

Tengku Adil kicked off the show with “Cinta Dia“…

Great to see Huda Ali back on the show and teaming up with Suzairhe Sumari

For someone who just recovered from chicken pox, Huda sure did not look like she had it… 

Group A smiling for the cameras before knowing their respective fates. God knows what was going through their heads then. I noticed something coincidental about the eliminated contestants in this photograph. They were both wearing black vests, unlike the rest. I’m not sure if Raja Razie‘s outfit could also be classified as a jacket or vest but the coincidence between Aisyah & Nur is surely eerie…

 The bottom six…

 

 And down to the bottom four…

Anugerah Skrin 2010 Variety & Drama Episodes 1 Recap…

Anugerah Skrin 2010 kicked off in earnest this past Tuesday night with the first half hour being a live programme from the studio, dedicated to introducing the Top 24 contestants in this year’s competition, as well as the resident judges and acting mentors responsible in guiding their respective journeys. I believe the hosts, resident judges and mentors for this season’s series need no further introduction as I had already done so in my previous entry.

As compared to the usual theatre setting that we have all been accustomed to in the past, this year the atmosphere will be a bit humbling in that the live shows will commence from the studio. For those of you who have been fortunate to attend studio shows before, you would note that depending on the set-up, it can either be spacious or otherwise. With the audience making up of close family members or friends of the contestants, movement around the set was very much restricted and I had a difficult time getting the right angles to capture the shots from the studio without the moving cameras blocking my views. Hopefully for future live shows, I would be able to get better shots to be featured in this blog.

It was only apt that the show began with last year’s Anugerah series singing competition winner Sarah Aqilah, coming onstage to introduce the contestants by singing the show’s theme song. Somehow I just felt that subjecting the contestants to dance to the song was a bit off. They could have just kept it simple by sticking to the basic catwalks and model-like poses. Or if they really needed to dance, then perhaps it should not have been a live show and perhaps recorded so that they could get their steps right. Too many were not in-step, which is a grave injustice to their kind choreographer Mr. Rosley Kassim.

I thought for someone who has not been doing live hosting for ages and being thrusted to the fore only because Huda Ali is down with chicken pox, Shahril Wahid could be forgiven for being nervous and fluffing his lines somewhat. And the bug also spread to someone as experienced as Suzairhe Sumari though his wasn’t as glaring and very much minimal. But I don’t think they are grave issues. It is afterall only the first show with them trying to get some chemistry going between them. In due time and as the weeks progress, I’m sure we’ll see the hosts exploding, moreso when Huda returns.

I like the interview segments with the respective resident judges and hosts, with them outlining their hopes and expectations. As Rilla Melati had laid down her first basic rule on what she expects from the contestants, which is to look at this competition and subsequently career, way beyond the life of glamour and stardust, at least two of the contestants during the introductory video footage mentioned something that had experienced people in the industry who were seated around me cringing. One of them mentioned that he has to improve on his acting cos who knows he might get more fans and another said that in ten years time, he would like to see himself as a star. You’re only at the first step boys, but clearly your intentions and directions are way off what the judges had spelt out. Good luck to you in the following rounds lads!!!

The Top 24 contestants were split into two groups, A & B, with six males and six females in each group. Each week these contestants will be asked to act in different drama genres to test their acting skills. They may spar with each other as well as several experienced actors. This week, we were treated to the recorded segments by Group A in the second half of the show, which was televised straight after the live studio recording. Well what do I make out of their virgin forays on television (ok I’m wrong to use the word “virgin” cos some of them might have appeared on television before as extras / bit-part roles)??? After watching it a few times (since I had recorded the show), I tend to agree with my counterparts at Gumbira.com that the ladies are much better actors than the guys.

Looking at the six girls, the standouts for me were Nissa & Aisyah. Biwa and Mariah seemed a bit patchy with their emotions as they drifted from being focused to a point where their facial expressions showed that something was bothering them. Or in the words of mentor Seri, they were just not giving their all. As for Halimah and Sakinah, they were almost as good as Nissa and Aisyah. However, their scripts were limited and they played more on the safe side as their soft characters did not allow them to push themselves harder. But still it has to be said that overall the ladies were much better. If you were to ask me who should be eliminated, I’m hard pressed to find an answer. But if push comes to shove, then I think Mariah will be eliminated. Don’t sue me, it’s just based on my own personal opinions.

As for the guys, I think the ones that impressed me to some extent were Muhammad Dzar, Raja Razie and Shahril Kahar. The former I believe has had some acting experience in the past, which is why I think he had the extra edge over the rest. As for Idris, Fahmy & Mohamed Nur, it is a pity that blessed with better looks over the three guys who impressed me, they could not back it up with convincing performances. The part where Fahmy knelt down and begged Mahriah‘s character to give him a chance, felt like a big joke, as he was too confused over the correct emotions he should portray. When we were watching it from the giant screen at the studio, the whole audience roared with laughter. One of these three look likely bets to be eliminated this week and that is not a laughing matter.

And so we await for the results this Friday when one male and one female contestant will be eliminated. As viewers’ votes account for 50% of the total votes, I beseech you to vote for those with real talents, not because they are cute, pretty, handsome or related to you. We too have the responsibility to lift our local acting standards through the votes we make to the rightful and deserving contestants. Remember, your personal favourites might one day represent us in drama series or movies through regional tie-ups and you would do well to vote wisely and not subject them and our industry to embarrassment in future if they were to come up short. Till then, here are the numbers to call and sms your respective votes for Group A, which has been kindly provided by Mediacorp Suria, all credits to them:

Voting Period: Tuesday, 4 May, 9pm – Friday, 7 May, 6pm

Voting format via SMS: ANU <space> Contestant’s Code and send to 73388
Voting format via IVRS: Call 1900-112-77, followed by Contestant’s Code

Contestants Code SMS Format IVRS Format
Biwa Mastura 1 ANU <space> 1 and send to 73388 1900-112-7701
Muhammad Dzar 2 ANU <space> 2 and send to 73388 1900-112-7702
Nissa Bahruddin 3 ANU <space> 3 and send to 73388 1900-112-7703
Raja Razie 4 ANU <space> 4 and send to 73388 1900-112-7704
Sakinah Rahim 5 ANU <space> 5 and send to 73388 1900-112-7705
Mohamad Idris 6 ANU <space> 6 and send to 73388 1900-112-7706
Mariah Mahfar 7 ANU <space> 7 and send to 73388 1900-112-7707
Muhammad Fahmy 8 ANU <space> 8 and send to 73388 1900-112-7708
Halimah Yahaya 9 ANU <space> 9 and send to 73388 1900-112-7709
Mohamed Nur 10 ANU <space> 10 and send to 73388 1900-112-7710
Siti Aisyah 11 ANU <space> 11 and send to 73388 1900-112-7711
Shahril Kahar 12 ANU <space> 12 and send to 73388 1900-112-7712

Terms & Conditions

  • Each vote via SMS or IVRS costs $0.60 (excluding GST).
  • Multiple voting is accepted.
  • This service is not open to pre-paid users.
  • For those under 18, please seek parental consent before participating.
  • This service is provided by MediaCorp Pte Ltd. Enquiry: Tel 68777132

Suria Elektra Post-Event: What You Did Not Get To See…

As promised, I’m back with this entry which I’ve promised to upload before Monday. For those of you who are linked to me in Facebook, this post is perhaps very much redundant as you would have seen the photographs I uploaded on Suria Elektra and its post-event reception about a week ago. But of course I have not forgotten those who are not in my contact list. That is why this entry is published specially for you even if I don’t upload all the photographs I took that night.

If you had watched the live telecast show from the comfort of your home, then you would have missed seeing the cutting of Suria‘s 10th Anniversary cake when the rolled credits had ended and Suria was showing “Kala Malam Bulan Mengambang“. Our distinguised guests-of-honour were invited up to the stage by the pre / post-event emcee, A B Shaik, to cut the 10kg cake sponsored by Prima Deli. Just before the cake was cut, everyone in the auditorium was asked to join in the singing of the birthday song. Even stars like Dato’ Siti NurhalizaRamli SaripTaufik Batisah and Hady Mirza amongst others, were not spared from being asked to sing when the microphone was passed to them.

The artistes waving and thanking the audience and fans who had come to watch…

Nurul Aini was seen blowing kisses to the crowd. She really enjoyed herself as a host that night…

The look on Fadly Awaludin‘s face was classic…

 

The cake is then wheeled out from the backstage…

“Happy birthday to you!!!… Happy birthday to you!!!”

Blowing away the flames on the candles…

And cutting the cake…

And then it was time for the food to be served at the post-event reception…

Suhaimi Yusof, food connoisseur, tucking in…

Hady & Taufik were still game for photographs even though they wore tired looks on their faces…

A mixture of old and new, from left: Taufik Salleh, Roslan Kemat, Noor Atika Kamaludin & Joe Lazarie

Imran Ajmain looked dashing, while Nurul Aini was stunning…

The ladies who sat together in a row and held their own party that night. Any performer would love to have them as part of their audience. From left: Rosita Hussin, Ariati Tyeb, Rahimah Yusof, Rita Zahara, Mastura Ahmad, Seri Wahyuni Jaes, Elfaeza Ul-Haq & Dalina Jaapar.

Here’s Pianka and their manager Jihan Jauhar

Three beautiful ladies whose talents have been discovered by Suria over the past decade, from left: Azzah Fariha, Kunjung and Huda Ali

Ashmie, Elfaeza and Shahril Wahid demonstrating how to be toothpaste commercial models, while Suhaillah Salam, Dalina & Taufik kept it cool…

The guys looked slick while the ladies were demure. You gotta hand it to Imran Ajmain, Syarif Sleeq, Fauzie Laily, Norfasarie, Rosita Hussin, Nurul Aini, Elfaeza, Dalina & Najip Ali

Suhaillah with the ever loving couple, Rafaat Hamzah and his wife Ziz Za

Catty (Anugerah 2009 semi-finalist) and Alyph Sleeq  flanking the cast of the new series Cinta Ixora – Syarif Sleeq, Nurul Nabilah, Setia Vegawati, Nadiah Mohd and Shenthy Feliziana. Cinta Ixora will debut on Suria on 27 February 2010 at 09:30pm

I’m sure fans of Syah Ibrahim (second from right) would love this photograph. Here he is with, from right: M. Saffri A. Manaf, Roslan Kemat, A B Shaik & Jorah Ahmad‘s chaperone…

Sani Hussin (second from left) was initially hesitant to take this photograph alongside the younger generation of Suria artistes like Ashmie, Taufik, Haizad Imran, Fadhlur Rahman, Sufiyan, Azzah Fariha & Elfaeza as he felt out of place, but he joined in after much coaxing. I’m sure the younger cohort look up to him as a mentor and inspiration…

Rita Zahara, ex-newscaster of both English & Malay news got my vote as the best-dressed that night. She was simply gorgeous in her dress, which was designed by Lulu Alhadad, an up and coming fashion designer…

And before I end this entry, I would just like to thank Imran Ajmain for taking the time to record this for my readers on that night itself. Please do give him your utmost support and visit his official website www.imranajmain.com for the latest news on his upcoming shows and single / album promotions. Also, for more news on our local entertainment scene, promotions on upcoming shows, concerts and events, you can get your bites at Gumbira.com, a company set up by none other than the man himself…

 

 

Suria Elektra Review…

Just as I had begun my previous entry, Mediacorp Suria reached a milestone on 30 January 2010 when it turned a decade old. And to commemorate its ten years of existence, the premier Malay television channel in Singapore held two big bashes within the space of a week – Fiesta Suria held at East Coast Park on 30 January 2010 itself and Suria Elektra on Friday 5th February 2010. While I will update this domain on photographs of the beach event on a slightly later date, I’m sure the one that people have vested interest in, is the Suria Elektra event.

Suria Elektra featured a stellar gathering of around 100 artistes and these included the unsung performers like the dancers, under the direction of veteran choreographer Eddy, the back-up singers under the tutelage of vocal coach Ann Hussein and the musicians led by Amri Amin, a well-respected music arranger and director. The two-hour live musical extravaganza was not only an evening of musical splendour but it also celebrated the unveiling of Suria’s new logo:

The new Suria logo reflects the channel’s growth. The strong bold letter “S” symbolises the channel’s strength in its aspiration to strife for new creative ideas. The bright orange signifies freshness and vibrancy while the “smiley” shape below the letter “S” characterises the channel as a “feel-good” channel that continues to shine with the viewers. The logo was officially unveiled by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, who was the guest-of-honour, during the show itself.

Suria‘s prime-time viewership has grown by 33% from 2008 to 2009 with the channel’s local contents constantly been its top-rated programmes. In a press release statement, Mr Suhaimi Jais, Senior Vice President of Suria Programming & Promotions and Mediacorp Eaglevision said that the challenge for them is to continuously improve their contents and keeping them fresh. The change in logo also portrays Suria‘s aspirations to be more innovative and providing up-to-date content.

It was a throwback to the year 2000 when the Prime Minister who was then-Deputy Prime Minister, had also launched the first official Malay channel on our shores. The days when our Malay programmes had to share a common channel with the arts, Tamil as well as children’s programmes now seem like a distant memory. Over the years we have also seen the launching of dedicated channels to cater to our Indian community (Vasantham) as well as for the children / arts / documentaries / lifestyle (Okto).

Before the show kicked off in earnest, there was a red-carpet and pre-show cocktail event. Hosted by roving hosts, Huda Ali & Rilla Melati, clips of the event were shown in brief and it looked grand seeing the invited artistes dressed in their very best. I did not attend the event as my invitation card did not include being invited to it. Even if I was invited, I doubt I would be able to make it as I was still stuck at work right up till 7.30pm, when the card clearly stated that we were to be there at 7:00pm!!! Good thing when I reached Caldecott Broadcast Centre, I was still considered early and had time to make my way into the auditorium. The only downside was having to negotiate my way in and being resorted to strict security checks. But that was understandable as the event was graced by the who’s who in our Malay community circle, distinguished dignitaries and of course, our Prime Minister.

The show kicked off with aplomb, Sarah Aqilah, the winner of Anugerah 2009, came onstage to sing Mulan Jameela‘s “Makhluk Tuhan Paling Seksi“. It came as a big surprise to me that this song was able to be performed on national television and in front of very, very important people who made up part of the audience. You might wonder and question, “What is wrong with that???” Here’s the ironical part. This song was not approved to be aired by our local radio stations due to its apparently suggestive nature, and yet here we are seeing it being performed on a grand scale. I wonder if the so-called “ban” would now be lifted as a result.

I thought the choice of having Najip Ali & Nurul Aini as hosts was spot-on. For someone who has not done live hosting for a few years, I thought Nurul did extremely well, even to the point of improvising her script at certain points to give it an edgier punch. Their chemistry throughout the show, grew as the minutes wore on. Obviously Nurul didn’t look out of place even though she did admit, she was very nervous prior to the show. One could understand her fears, especially since this was afterall a grand event watched by thousands at home and very, very important people in the auditorium.

Sleeq & Maiya Rahman performing a song specially composed in tribute to popular programmes televised on Suria over the past ten years…

It was apt that Eka Mairina & Kunjung Whitaker performed together onstage as they’re our two famous Indonesian imports whose raw potentials were polished in the Anugerah competition. I had envisaged that someday they would perform together but I did not expect it to be this soon. For the record, Eka became champion in 2003 while Kunjung was the runner-up in last year’s competition. That night, they sang the classic hit “Jelingan Manja” and was accompanied by renowned saxaphonist Jari.

Anang Hermansyah performing his current hit “Separuh Jiwaku Pergi“. The whole auditorium felt his emotions flowing in the song and he was given a rousing ovation by a whole row of female personalities that included the likes of Seri Wahyuni Jaes, Mastura Ahmad, Ariati Tyeb and Rita Zahara

This particular segment whereby Anang and Sarah sang the former’s composition “Belajarlah Untuk Cinta” was both cute and cynical at the same time – Cute because Anang was being cheeky and romantic by holding onto Sarah‘s hands throughout the song and grinning from ear to ear, and cynical because the words to the song was an obvious dig to his ex-wife. They obviously were a joy to listen to, showing good vocal harmony together and having the chemistry that lent credence to the performance. Sarah who was initially coy, showed the audience why she deserved to be crowned Anugerah 2009 champion by hitting the high notes with nonchalant ease. Not that regular viewers needed any reminders.

Vadi, Kym Ng and Suhaimi Yusof cracking up the audience with their short skit…

The girls of Pianka definitely did not disappoint when they sang their first single “Mau Yang Besar“. Though the song is more than a year old, having been included in the Cicakman 2 official soundtrack album, I’ve yet to hear it on this shores. I just hope the slightly suggestive title doesn’t go the same way as Mulan Jameela‘s “Makhluk Tuhan Paling Seksi“, because compared to the latter which I agree has some undesirable tones, the former actually portrays how some ladies’ preferences for material stuff, are conditions warranted in order to win over their hearts. This song has been playing at the back of my head ever since I met them at the Suria Elektra Media Session. Kudos to Edry KRU on another masterpiece composition. He’s not a millionaire for nothing or just by introducing mere pretty faces in the music industry across the Causeway.

As winners of the inaugural Anugerah Band competition, I expected Rancour to at least have more minutes to their segment, cos Sarah Aqilah appeared in no less than three items that night. Surely being winners themselves, they deserved slightly more, yes???

Eiss & “Papa Rock“, Ramli Sarip, singing the latter’s old hit “Teratai“. The hairs stood in awe of their performance…

Ramli Sarip then took centrestage singing “Keliru“…

He was ably accompanied by Zoul (left) and Alif Putra (right). For the uninitiated, Zoul is the younger brother of M. Nasir and Alif was the winner of Best Musician at the inaugural Anugerah Band competition in 2008, where he turned out with the group Putra.

This segment featuring the new faces of Suria over the past decade left me and the audience scratching our heads as to whether it was necessary to have in the first place or merely a filler of sorts because it felt more like a fashion showcase where models do the catwalk along the runway. Even though I have no qualms about their selections and felt all ten of them deserved to be there, I just can’t help thinking that besides the good-lookers, maybe perhaps they could have included the breakthrough artistes or artistes who are plus-sized but still became household names like Fadhilah Samsudin (Erlin Montel), Zamberi Abdul Patah (Cik Leh in “Jeritan Sepi 2“) and Haryani Othman (Cikgu Bedah in “Tahu Nahu“). Granted, you need to look good to be on television, but a more realistic perspective could probably have given these people a fairer opportunity to receive some form of recognition for their good performances and making viewers remember them by.

Unlike his haunting hit “Angkasa” which has now topped the local radio charts for a ninth straight week, I found Hady Mirza‘s next single “Hentikan“, taken off his “Sang Penyanyi” album, which he sang that night, needing a lot of getting used to as compared to the former. “Angkasa” is easier on the ears as it is a typical ballad and sappy song. What made it even more special was the fact that it was Hady‘s first Malay single since “Jangan Memandu Di Pinggir Jalan“. However, the message the song “Hentikan” brings with it with regards to world peace, ending strifes and wars I believe, is more important and that’s what make this next single of his a song of pristine substance. I also do not dare to bet against this song following the footsteps of “Angkasa” and topping the local charts in time to come.

When Suria Channel was first launched on 30 January 2000, Siti Nurhaliza was slowly making waves as the hottest singing sensation this part of South-East Asia was witnessing. Back then when she donned a striking kimono and singing “Kurniaan Dalam Samaran“, I doubt that anyone of us, me included, would have envisaged seeing her being conferred the status of a “Dato‘” within a ten-year period. But such has been her colourful journey and without waxing too much lyrical on her achievements that need no further reminding, she has definitely gone on to become a brand name that the whole Nusantara has come to love and in the case of certain quarters, dislike. The title bestowed on her was a matter of when, not if. She would have gotten it even if she had not married a “Dato‘” as well.

That night Dato’ Siti Nurhaliza sang three songs to the delight of the watching audience. The first, “Batas Asaku” was taken off the official soundtrack of the movie “Perempuan Berkalung Sorban“, which was based on a novel by Abidah el Khalieqy, and was first published by the Yayasan Kesejahteraan Fatayat in Jogjakarta in 2001. After addressing the audience, she followed up her segment with a medley of Bukan Cinta Biasa and Destinasi Cinta, two songs that needed no further introductions. I guess in any appearance she makes, be it for a showcase, a concert or even a brief cameo, the audience would never get enough of her and that night was no different.

I certainly did not expect Taufik Batisah to sing “Sesuatu Janji” taken off his “All Because Of You” album, simply for the sole reason that he already has a more recent album entitled “Suria Hatiku“, one that has produced hits after hits with every single being introduced on the airwaves. But was I complaining??? Not one bit, cos amongst all his songs, this is my personal favourite and little wonder too, since I got him to sing this song when he recorded a greeting for this blog which I posted in the entry before last. I half-expected him to do his somersault, which he executed when he sang the same song at Anugerah Planet Muzik 2008, but I guess the space constraints didn’t allow him to. Or perhaps that special moment in 2008 was reserved for the regional audience. Still, I enjoyed it all the same.

The show came to a rousing end when the Anugerah alumnus, which consisted of Fauzie Laily, Maiya Rahman, Hyrul Anuar and Eka Mairina came on stage to sing Adam & Stacy‘s “Menggegar Dunia“. This was followed by Sarah Aqilah appearing for the third time that night, along with Eiss and Kunjung singing Faizal Tahir‘s “Gemuruh“. I just felt the first song, which is punchier as compared to the second one, would have been a better choice to open or end the show. The performance which reeked of zest and energy, as demonstrated by Fauzie, Maiya, Hyrul and Eka, would have been a fairer reflection of what Suria is all about – Vibrancy.

If there were any complaints or misgivings I had, then perhaps it would have been the fact that certain people were apparently overlooked for this event. The show was meant to be a celebration of the past ten years and it was fair to have those performing or those who made an appearance that night being given the opportunity to do so. Yes it was commendable to have the Anugerah alumnus between the years 20032009 performing, but what about those before that, most notably Aqmal Noor (winner in 2004), Indra Hamzah (winner in 2001) and Rudy Djoharnaen (winner in 2002)??? While Aqmal is slowly making inroads as seen by his win at last year’s Rentak Singapura event for his composition entitled “Warkah Dunia“, the other two have been relatively quiet and not heard of since.

Suria also had non-singing competitions like Juara (2002) and Anugerah Skrin (2006) in search of the next big thing in acting and hosting. Though the potentials of Nurul Aini as the night’s co-host and Huda Ali as roving host during the pre-event cocktail reception, were discovered and eventually polished to be who they are now, I hope no one has forgotten the likes of Firdaus Abdul Rahman (who appeared as “Captain Zero” in the comedy sitcom “Ahakz” and lately as the teacher in “Dikir Putri“) and Shahril Wahid (who played the handicapped character in “Gerimis Di Hati“), winners of Juara and Anugerah Skrin (Male Category) respectively. Both are accomplished theatre actors and they have definitely brought their experiences to the screens. One can only recall how Shahril‘s character in “Gerimis Di Hati” was excellently portrayed and I wouldn’t bet against him winning something at next year’s Pesta Perdana event just for that role itself.

If the segments that night were already too packed for a two-hour programme, then perhaps they could have just made cameo appearances, just like the catwalk segment that featured the new faces of the past decade. I think a small gesture like that could have gone a long way in refreshing the minds of viewers, that these guys also had had their moments of joy when they created history with the channel. I hope in future, winners like them would be remembered, even if they’re mentioned in brief or shown short clips of their performances. They are all unique in their own rights, skilled in their respective crafts, and should not be reduced to mere footnotes or forgotten altogether. I could be wrong in my analysis though, as perhaps they could have been invited to perform or make an appearance, but could not make it due to personal commitments. Shahril for the record, was invited as a guest that night.

The finale…

I just found it extremely unfortunate that on a week our premier Malay channel celebrated its milestone, unsavoury news in the print and alternative media with regards to a home-made video of a former actress / host, as well as news of the arrests of a famous comedian and a rock singer came to light. Everyone seems to have an opinion one way or another about these incidents as they’re being talked about almost everywhere on the Net. Even my blog statistics jumped because people were searching for the name of that former actress / host and their search results led to this domain. I will not delve too much on it, but I hope the public’s opinions on artistes in general will still be as positive as ever and not look down on them nor stereotype this career path as was famously portrayed in Allahyarham Tan Sri P. Ramlee‘s classic “Ibu Mertuaku“.

Like any offender, I believe the people who have made the news of late, should not be made outcasts or pariahs throughout their lives. We all make mistakes, whether they’re minor or severe, and the only way for them to lead normal lives again after this, is for us to offer them support & encouragement to be better people and accept them as part of society. Do not ostracise them just because as artistes, they are expected to be role models discerning youngsters look up to for inspiration. I’m actually heartened by the fact that fellow artistes have voiced their support in one way or another via their Tweets and Facebook statuses. This spirit of togetherness and protecting one another is what I admire and applaud, even though we’ve all heard before about the industry being harsh and bitchy due to a lot of backbiting.

Which reminds me of this entry I typed last July entitled “Be True To Yourselves“. When all these incidents happened, became the talking points and ended up being tabloid fodder (ok granted we only have one tabloid paper in our midst), I was eeriely reminded of what I outlined through several pointers in that particular posting. I certainly did not expect some of what I mentioned to be uncannily prophetic. Though I will not quote everything on what I typed back then, I will just end this entry with three paragraphs from that post I made, which relate to what has been happening around us of late and I hope we would all learn something from these recent episodes:

“Which is why I hope that up-and-coming artistes like our new batch of Anugerah contestants as well as those that are already established, would succeed without having any skeletons in the closet or deceive the fans through cunning ability spinning yarns after yarns of crap. One can put up a false front in front of the public, pull the wool over the eyes of the legions of fans, but shit catches up with the bull eventually since the latter needs to defecate afterall. In other words, one can only go so far with bullshit but life has a way of revealing dirty little secrets through time and when one leasts expects it.

Be thankful that there will always be an ever caring and protective arm around your shoulder, shielding you away from any possible backlash from your own fans or the community, when the paparazzis come a-calling, catching you in the act with your pants down. Cos too many of our local acts think they can get away with misdemeanours done mostly with the opposite sex or through various forms of intoxications. We are afterall, living in a society that is still conservative and sensitive. Being in the public eye, one should know better than to do things that could jeopardise their growing reputation as an established brand in the industry.

This entry, even though it looks as though I’m dissing someone or some people, it has to be said that it is also a reminder I want to share with all local artistes out there because I want to see our small industry succeed, without having to go through nasty episodes, which would eventually lead to a lot of unhappiness and ostracising. Everything that is to be done should be from the heart, laced with integrity and filled with unbridled honesty. That’s how one achieves blessed sustenance in any work or endeavour that we put our will into. I am very sure that most of our local acts are true to themselves and honest in their approach to their craft. For that, I will always continue to support our industry, no matter how much we seem to lack in several areas of professionalism.”

P.S. You must be wondering where are the post-event reception photographs. This entry was already too long for my liking that I’ve decided to split it into two. I’ll try to upload the photographs before Monday. Till then, I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this review and thank you Suria for inviting me to the event as well as providing useful information which I have included in this entry…