Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Respect and Professionalism

Lately an incident in the arts community here has become a topic of discussion. A Straits Times reporter, having sat through only 10 minutes into a performance for the Singapore Theatre Festival, wrote a review on that performance which was filled with inaccuracies and misleading information. This sparked some unhappiness among some local theatre practitioners, and I felt equally upset. Where has the professionalism of this reporter went to? I'm sure he should have learnt at some point of his academic life that one need to have thorough research before he even write a thesis, report, review, whatever, and in this case, shouldn't he write only after he had finished the show? It is downright disrespectful of the performance and its production crew to write a review based on simply assumption of what would happen for the next 9/10 of the performance which the reporter had missed. To put it on an even simpler term, I'm sure at least he's heard of the phrase "do not judge a book by his cover", and sadly, this was what he did. The more disappointing fact was that the Straits Times weren't even a single bit apologetic towards this incident; all they did was to put a small disclaimer in the papers stating that the review was not "incomplete" as the reviewer did not finish the show. Is that all the Straits Times have to say to this incident? What about the discourse of professional ethics which was obviously left out? A lecturer of mine once told my class that sometimes she got upset when she reads the Life! section of the Straits Times because of the shallowness of the contents, and now I can understand (I haven't read the local papers for ages since I do not like the style of it). At this point of writing, I understand some theatre practitioners have started sending letters to the press to voice their unhappiness (sadly I didn't, as I know well enough my linguistic power only allows me to diss in my own blog), and I believe as usual, the management of the Straits Times will jump up from their cosy armchairs to react accordingly, as what has been done before for other similar and/ or not-so-similar happenings. Or will they not do anything? We shall see...

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

It's a Small World!

I just got an updated production schedule for this term this morning. So here I am, going to be a lighting op. for "The Odd Couple", which will be held towards the later half of next month. I saw a familiar name in the lighting designer section, and a check with Shao Ann confirmed that this lighting designer was someone I knew; he was my lighting op. when I was doing lighting design for my troupe's performance at the Esplanade Recital Studio. Well I'm glad that I did not ill-treat him nor the rest of the lighting team the previous round, or else I'm not sure what will happen during production, when our roles are switched! Nevertheless, it still feel great to work with someone I know, although I'm not sure if he still remembers me. At the very least, I can be sure I will be able to work well with him, and that is a very big relief for me.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Beckham the Musical?

So, the next new theme to be brought onto the stage of musicals is the life of David Beckham, and somemore on London's West End! It's still rather vague as to what will be featured in this musical, but it is said that David Beckham: The Theatre of Dreams, "is a modern-day fairytale of heroes, villains, love, Manchester United and what it means to lead your country" as quoted off from Mark Archer, the producer of this musical. Although I may not have interest in soccer, I'm quite interested to see how this musical is like, somemore it's based on the life story of a living, white male!

Charlie Brown Musical

"Peanuts" has been my all-time favourite comic strip since young, and believe it or not, it as watching the cartoon version of "Peanuts" that make me interested in Jazz (Jazz music has been used extensively in almost all episodes, if not all).

There's also a musical version of "Peanuts" titled "You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown", and if not wrong it was performed in Singapore a few years ago. It's rather interesting to have a comic strip being brought to stage, because the characters no longer look like what you used to remember; like Charlie Brown no longer is a small boy with big head and a bit of curly hair, and Snoppy now has "hair" and looks more like "human". However it's still not hard to tell who is who from some clues embedded in their costumes, which makes it even more fun. Of course, other than these elements, I thought the music and lyrics to this musical are good also. Hopefully I'll be able to catch them in action again, although I know well that it has been closed for a few years now.

"You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown"


Are you able to tell who is who from the 2 clips above?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Finally Found: "William Teo: His Work in Theatre"

There's this particular book on the late local theatre practitioner William Teo which I had been searching high and low for months, and I finally found it at Earshot Cafe at the Artshouse.

Actually, I've seen this book before a few years back at the Esplanade gift shop (or whatever you call it), but I didn't buy at that point of time. I did browse through the book briefly, though, and I thought his works seemed interesting to me. However, I soon forgot about the book, its contents, and even the subject matter after some time. It was only during my interview for admission into TTA that William Teo's name resurfaced again, when my programme leader Shao Ann commented that my design for my specialism project gave him the impression of how William Teo would have done in my place. Therefore, I began hunting for the book, but alas, Esplanade gift shop do not carry it already. I went to a few major bookstores too, but neither do they have it. Even Select Books, a local bookstore which carries lots of rare southeast Asian publications, no longer have it in their stocks. "Our supplier said that this book is too old and has been out-of-print already!", the lady over the counter told me after checking with their supplier. Luckily for me, I stumbled upon Earshot Cafe's website by chance and realised that they still have it, and hence decided to head down to the cafe to get it.

I'm still very excited now, at being able to get my hands on the book. I think I'm going to frame it up, or even lock it up in a metal box under layers of chains and padlocks!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Going First Aid Course 2

3 more photos from my first aid course taken today. Please do note that the superimposed thought bubbles in the following pictures are purely fictional and do not represent what the involved personnel had in mind at the point of photo taking!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Going First Aid Course

Today is Saturday, but I had to go for lessons too. However, it wasn't in school that I had my lesson in, but at the Red Cross Training Centre. It was part of our faculty's requirement for us newbies to be trained (and pass) in first aid, and today's the first day of the three day course.

In the past when I attend such training lessons with lots of dry "try-to-absorb-as-much-as-you-can" information, I'd simply doze off within half an hour. I thought this would be no different, but luckily it wasn't that bad. In fact it was rather interesting. However, lessons are after all lessons; when faced with a real first aid situation, I'm not sure if I can really handle it at all!
The "posey" casualty

TTA's version of the "Three Wise Monkeys"

The "Ice Hockey Casualty"

It seems like a wrong bandage; the lips are "swollen", so should put a donut over it and wrap it up!

Another "posey" casualty

Monday, August 11, 2008

1-month Anniversary of my last post

It's been exactly a month (less 1 day) since I last blogged. What happened to me, you might ask. Well, a lot!

First, school term had just begun, and I was as busy as hell. Ironically, it was still "honeymoon" period of school, so why am I so busy? I don't know, but maybe when faced with subjects I like (technical theatre arts, of course!), I can just do research non-stop. Can you believe it, it was just 1 week of school and my journal is like 1/2 full!

Second reason why I went "missing" on the blogsphere was a more "tragic" one: my laptop failed on me! I didn't know what happened, but on my first day of school, my keypad and mousepad suddenly failed on me. In desperation, I had to send my Macbook Pro for servicing, and I was "handicapped" for 7 days without a laptop to use: it affected my school work, freelance design work, and ability to surf the net as and when I want!

So now I'm back, and hopefully I'll be able to update my blog more often; I hope...