Saturday, April 26, 2014

MBS's 'Grease' in Review

Grease at MBS was such incredible fun! Right from the start when a stern teacher marched out onstage and made us recite nonsensical lyrics, you know that we are in for a really good time. This current Australian production opened in 1993, an amalgam of the original 1979 musical and the famous movie about a bunch of high-schoolers in the 1950s, but from the start there's nothing outdated about the performance I saw. The live band and huge cast of performers performed with such infectious energy that even the most hard-hearted will get swept up in it.

Harnoncourt's 'Fidelio' - $2.50 on iTunes

I've been searching for a period instrument/period-style Fidelio for the longest time as I would like to hear it done by non-Wagnerian voices with a lighter orchestration, but can't seem to find one despite the abundance of the composer's symphonies already well-represented in HIP style. I guess to some level opera folks just are not keen to hear Beethoven's opera sung by Mozartean voices.

So I searched iTunes again today and came across this 1995 recording by Nikolaus Harnoncourt, going for only SGD2.50!!! It stars one Charlotte Margiono in the title role, a singer that as of now is still unknown to me, Peter Seiffert, Bo Skovhus and Barbara Bonney. While I usually avoid Harnoncourt's recording like the palgue (witness his Salzburg Marriage of Figaro DVD that turned a dream cast into a nightmare recording), at this price its certainly worth giving him another shot.

Oddly, there's a highlights version of this same recording that's selling for the same price of S$2.50. No wondering which version to buy then!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Martin Ng as Bartolo in Teatro Comunale Ruggero Ruggeri's 'Barber of Seville'

Join us as we congratulate Martin Ng on adding another successful bel canto role into his extensive repertoire in Italy. Check out the pictures taken on 5 April here!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

New Music Productions from RWS and MBS

Our two integrated resorts bring out the musical big guns as they each open their new shows in the space of a week, RWS with the local propag  production Ah Boys to Men to Men The Musical this coming Friday 18 April 2014, while MBS opens a touring production of the John Travolta/Olivia Newton John classic Grease on Friday 25 April 2014. More information below:

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Kenneth Hamilton Piano Recital

Steinway Artist Kenneth Hamilton returns to the Esplanade Recital Studio for an evening of music by and inspired by Bach. More information on his SISTIC link here:

Saturday, April 12, 2014

LASALLE's 'The Wedding Singer' in Review

Hawk attended the opening night of LASALLE's musical theatre department's graduation production of The Wedding Singer. Here are his thoughts:

The LaSalle Show 2014
The Singapore Airlines Theatre, Singapore
11th April 2014

A Review by Hawk Liu

The delightful musical had Jordan Prainito and Kimberly Chan in the ‘nearly love-lost’ leads who did incredible jobs with the 2 leading characters. Notwithstanding, the rest of the cast was no less talented in taking the audience on a journey where we wanted the boy to get the girl in spite of all obstacles. For a show that featured the graduates of the Musical Theatre Department of the LaSalle School, one expected high energy and we got it. The energetic opening theme number gave us a taste of the commitment the cast would give to the rest of the show.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

MBS 'The Sound of Music' Audition Results!!!

The little actors who will play the Von Trapp children have been chosen! Scroll down to see who made the cut!


Tickets now on sale for the world’s best loved musical which opens at the MasterCard® Theatres, Marina Bay Sands on 11 July

Singapore, 1 April 2014 - Eighteen of Singapore’s most able young actors and actresses have been picked from a pool of over 400 talented applicants for the coveted roles of the six children (out of the seven in total) that form the Von Trapp family, in the forthcoming production of THE SOUND OF MUSIC, opening at the MasterCard® Theatres, Marina Bay Sands on 11 July 2014. Tickets for the show are now on sale

The successful young boys and girls, two male and four females aged from six to 12, will perform in rotation as the six children from the Von Trapp Family - the small and cute Gretl, the boy characters Federich and Kurt, as well as Marta, Brigitta, and Louisa.

Over 50 schools were represented, comprising of local and international schools, with the children coming in from all corners of Singapore. They were put through their paces by the show’s Resident Director, Mr. Anton Luitingh, who specially flew in to Singapore over a weekend for the auditions. The highly anticipated rehearsals begin in June this year.

With its unforgettable score, the chosen Von Trapp family will sing some of most memorable songs ever performed on the musical theatre stage and ones that have touched the hearts of all ages including My Favorite Things, Do-Re-Mi, Climb Ev’ry Mountain, Edelweiss, The Lonely Goatherd, Sixteen Going on Seventeen, and of course the glorious title song The Sound of Music.

“From an incredible pool of talent, the team from Rodgers and Hammerstein in London and I have picked 18 super-talented stars-in-the-making!” enthused Mr. Luitingh. “I was very impressed by the caliber of the candidates who came to the audition, and would like to thank everyone for participating. It’s always such a difficult decision to have to narrow the list down, and I am especially confident Singapore audiences will be astounded by the Von Trapp’ performances.”

We are delighted to announce the casting of the Singapore Children for The Sound of Music as follows:

GRETL: Chloe Choo, Jaime Chew, Emilia Klein.
MARTA: Carolina Campbel Magan, Samantha Lee, Selma Hansen.
BRIGITTA: Georgia Blakeman, Mimi Slinger, Felicity Bertram.
KURT: Benjamin O’Dwyer, Joshua Goh, James Bell.
LOUISA: Sabrina Lee, Abbie Machin, Olivia Nolan.
FRIEDRICH: Isaac Burgess, Patrick Friedlander, Sean Harrison.

THE SOUND OF MUSIC tells the uplifting true story of Maria, the fun-loving governess who changes the lives of the widowed Captain Von Trapp and his seven children by re-introducing them to music, culminating in the family’s flight across the Austrian mountains as tensions rise prior to the outbreak of World War II. This iconic musical is sure to work its magic once again, for young and old alike.

Arguably one of the world’s best-loved musicals, the original 1959 Broadway production of THE SOUND OF MUSIC won six Tony Awards, including Best Musical, and was Rodgers and Hammerstein’s biggest success. The 1965 movie starring Julie Andrews as Maria won five Oscars, including Best Picture, and remains one of the most popular movies of all time.

Lim Yau Feature on Taime Out Singapore

In conjunction with Lim Yau's performance of St. John's Passion with the SSO and Chorus this coming Friday, 4 April 2014, Time Out Singapore carries a feature on the Maestro, where I discuss the current state of the arts scene as well as possible plans for the future:

Eva Marie Westbroek Interview on TEDex

I thought that Eva Marie Westbroek is a native German? How come her speaking voice sounds so much like Renee Fleming's? Oh wait Wikipedia says she's Dutch. Still doesn't answer my question though...