Friday, September 12, 2008

NST Feature

There's a feature story of Ho Soon Yoon and Glamorique on New Straits Times' Life&Times date September 11.

Broadway Parodies Lagi Lah! is served up next week as the sequel to the hilarious Broadway Parodies Lah! DENNIS CHUA finds out what's being offered to tickle the funny bone this time around.

MUSIC lovers Ho Soon Yoon and Glamorique Arshad have always enjoyed Broadway hits.

In fact they grew up listening to songs such as At the End of the Day (from the play Les Miserables), The Candy Man (Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory), Good Morning Starshine (Hair), Sixteen Going On Seventeen (The Sound of Music), Cabaret, Oklahoma and Hello Dolly.

"Broadway is all about life, presented as musicals," said Ho. "When I watch a Broadway production, I benefit from the wisdom of the lyrics that composers like Rodgers and Hammerstein came up with years ago.

"Glamorique, or Glam as he is more popularly known, said: "Even by merely singing or listening to a Broadway song one can feel drawn towards the play. They're not only educational, but also timeless and magical. That's why I never tire of singing and dancing to their songs."
Ho, 30, from Kuala Lumpur, and Glam, 27, from Johor, will be performing in Broadway Parodies Lagi Lah! at the Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre in Sentul Park, Jalan Ipoh, Kuala Lumpur, from Sept 18 to 28.

A production of The Actors' Studio, it is the sequel to last year's Broadway Parodies Lah!.

Like its predecessor, Broadway Parodies Lagi Lah! is a rich rojak of Malaysian life, with a large helping of humour presented in a showcase of well-loved songs and dance numbers.

The lyrics have been spoofed to celebrate Malaysian mannerisms and icons.

Joining original team members Glam and Ho are jazz and folk star Mia Palencia, Tria, Tabitha Kong, Janet Lee, Sarah Low, Shahila Johan, Zeqhty Ramli, Sham Sunder Binwani and Keith Yew.

Choreographer Farah Sulaiman is back onboard, as are production designer Edna Tan and costume designer Dominique Devorsine.

As in the first outing, the show is created by Jason Cheong and Tan and written and directed by Brian McIntyre.

Datuk Faridah Merican and Joe Hasham are executive producer and artistic director respectively.

The hilarious songs, which spoof their Broadway originals include At the End of the Play (from At the End of the Day in Les Miserables), Chicken with the Chili on Top (Surrey with the Fringe in Oklahoma), The Roti Man (The Candy Man in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory), Good Morning Towels (Good Morning Starshine in Hair), Seventeen Going On Eighteen (Sixteen Going On Seventeen in The Sound Of Music), Karaoke (Cabaret), Damansara (Oklahoma) and Hello Datin (Hello Dolly).

A former bank customer service executive, Ho grew up singing with the Philharmonic Society of Selangor (The Phil) as lead singer and chorus member.

His notable performances included Music from Movies and Musicals, Rutter's Requiem and The Merry Widow Concert, all in the late 1990s.

The Phil's In the Mood in 2004 saw Ho debut as a conductor. Since then he has also conducted The Phil's choir for its annual Songfest competitions.

Ho has also sung at the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra's Laudus Organie in 2004 and was a featured soloist in the Malaysian Male Voices Choir that year.

Early this year, composer Nick Choo of Singapore chose Ho to perform in the International Sound of the Human World Buddhist Hymn Competition.Ho's recent musicals include Viva Voce II, Kam... In Your Face, DanSing Thru Broadway, Carmen, Turandot, M! The Opera, Butterfly Lovers, Tunku, The Musical, Rose, Rose I Love You and Broken Bridges, which earned him a nomination in the 2006 Boh Cameronian Arts Awards for Most Promising Artiste.

Ho also appeared on television in the ntv7 mini-series Saddiq & Co last year, and played Conrad in Bernard Chauly's Goda.

Besides singing, acting and conducting, Ho is a pianist, harmonica player and guitarist.

"I would love to compose songs or produce a play in the near future," he said, adding that his dream Broadway role was playing the Engineer in Miss Saigon as the character was "very complex and entertaining."

Glam, who is of Japanese-Javanese ancestry, is a performing arts graduate from the United Kingdom's Academy of Contemporary Music in Guildford and the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts.

"The Liverpool Institute is owned by none other than former Beatle Sir Paul McCartney," he said.

The baritone singer and dancer also took vocal training under Siti Hajar Ismail of Akademi Fantasia fame and tap and jazz dance lessons under Farah.His debut in local musicals was in Stand and Deliver (1990) under the direction of Mervyn Peters.

In 2000, he starred in Farah's Dance Hysteria. Last year, he joined Ho in the ensemble of Tunku, The Musical and also sang back-up vocals in P. Ramlee — The Musical.

Glam also acted in the dark comedy Coming Out of the Closet with Livewire Theatre and The Two Brothers, a dramatic thriller which was part of KLPaC's May Platform this year.

In the recent Short and Sweet Festival, he won second prize for Best Actor for his portrayal of the Psychic in Love and Light.

Glam has just written his play Stuck, which will premiere in KLPaC next year. He is also a saxophonist, Latin percussionist and song composer.

His television credits include Malaysia's first English-language soap City of the Rich in 2004, and the on-going journalistic series Frontpage on ntv7.

"My favourite Broadway show is The Phantom of the Opera and I'm doing a hilarious spoof of its theme song called The Bomoh of the Bursa," he said.

Broadway Parodies Lagi Lah! will be staged at 8.30pm (Tuesdays to Saturdays) and 3pm (Sundays). Tickets are priced at RM60, RM40, RM20 (students), RM100 (family packages of four and an extra RM20 for any additional family member).

Early bird discounts are available two weeks before the opening night at RM40 (adults) and RM10 (students).Call 03-404-79000 or 03-209-49400.


PakciQue said...

Drama GODA adalah sebuah drama yang sangat dekat dengan penonton. Itulah realiti kehidpuan dalam mencari cinta. Betapa susahnya mencari cinta. Dan betapa susahnya mempertahankan cinta.

Baca review aku pasal GODA di

Updated Episode 5:

TQ. Jgn lupe komen. Ok.

Anonymous said...

Was reading this article and could not help it but notice that Glamourique Arshad is 27? I think that is not true because we went to the same school in BBBS and we were born in the year 1971. His name is Iskandar Shah, right?

Anonymous said...

Does it really matter whether Glamorique is 18, 27 or 99? Important thing is he did a wonderful job on both Parodies and the audience enjoyed his performance...everything else is a moot point :)

- Bebe kp, Petaling Jaya

Anonymous said...

Yeah! I think you're right, familiar face. Glamourique Arshad is Iskandar Shah. Was born in 1971. He's such a nice guy, humble and very friendly. He's gone through a really tough time couple of years ago. At least now I know that he really enjoy doing things that he loves to do, in entertainment industry. May Allah bless him.

-Cleopatra, JB.

Anonymous said...

Cleo, you are probably his best friend. Good for you to think so highly of him. God bless you too. God definitely will forgive him about the age thingy. Nothing wrong for publically telling people that he is 10 years younger. Nobody cares anyway. It is just numbers. He has gone through tough time? Kesiannya.