Thursday, September 13, 2018

[Media Invite] SingaPOPera - A Celebration of The Musicals of Dick Lee

Singapore's very own homegrown, talented composer, pop singer, songwriter and playwright- Dick Lee. You cannot be clueless about him even if you have not watch his musicals, he is the composer behind the Nation's most well beloved National Day Song 'Home' composed in 1998. Till date, this song is still a hit in most Singaporeans, even Vera knows how to sing the chorus though not the full song.

25th August 2018, I celebrated my birthday with the privilege of attending SingaPOPera together with Jenn and Lynn, a concert put up to celebrate the 30th Anniversary of 'Beauty World' . Written by Dick Lee and Michael Chiang in 1988, this is one musical with numerous restaging over the past 30 years. 

The amazing two hours, Dick Lee reminisced and brought us through the 18 musicals he has written over the past 30 years together with 7 other shining musical theatre stars; 'Broadway Beng' Sebastian Tan, Alamay Fernandez, Denise Tan, Dwayne Lau, Frances Lee, Benjamin Chow and Cheryl Tan accompanied by a 9-piece band, led by Musical Director Indra Ismail.

The cast also recapped and shared how they embarked on their musical theatre journey and how Dick Lee had influenced them in their careers. That night, the cast took turns to serenade along side with Dick Lee accompanying most of the songs on piano.     

Photo Credit: Dick Lee Asia

2017, I did not made it to watch Forbidden City: Protrait of An Empress. That night, I roughly got a summary through the songs, one of which 'Now China has a son' sung by Benjamin Chow.

I especially loved the piece "My only chance" sung by Malaysian-born talent, Cherly Tan, who played Young Yehenara in Forbidden City back then. The song was repeatedly playing in my head even after the concert had ended.

Photo Credit: Dick Lee Asia

Another favourite for that evening was 'When All The Tears Have Dried' from Sing to the Dawn was brought alive by vocal powerhouse, Alamay Fernandez, one of the best female vocalist in Singapore and also, a Jazz singer.  

Photo Credit: Dick Lee Asia

This year also marked the 20th Anniversary for the most successful Cantonese - Chinese musical, Snow Wolf Lake [雪狼湖], sang by Jacky Cheung, Love is forever [爱是永恒] - in Cantonese version. Dick Lee, whom later claimed that he did not have a clue of what he was singing as it was in Cantonese but I must say it was really good. I have fallen in love with this song 20 years ago and till now I still do love it.

Photo Credit: Dick Lee Asia

Bunga Sayang, composed and written by Dick Lee. This is my first time hearing this iconic folk song, it was simple yet beautiful and melodious when all the voices blended in unison. 

In every village by the sea 
There stands a tall and ancient tree 
That shelters from the sky above 
A tree of hope, a tree of love

It shares with us our joy and feels our pain 
It grows with us through sun and rain 
It stays so green the whole year through 
And flowers when a dream comes true

Bunga Sayang 
Bunga Sayang 
You are heaven's own work of art 
Bunga Sayang 
Bunga Sayang 
Gentle flower of the heart

Nearing the end of the concert, we got on our feet and cha-cha-cha along as we sang "Beauty World" with the cast. This is one of the best known musical of singapore, written with some Singlish and Singapore Slang.

Photo Credit: Dick Lee Asia

The concert ended with Dick Lee leading the whole theatre into singing "Home" which I believed that, this song has been deeply engraved in all our hearts.

Photo Credit: Dick Lee Asia

It had been a night of an amazing showcase by these shining stars and Dick Lee who is one of the best known personality and has a significant contribution to the art scene, especially in Singapore.  I thank AT Marketing Consultancy once again for the invitation and to iRoo Singapore for dressing me up with your unique apparels. I will be sharing more on my retail experience and choice of selection of the iRoo outfits soon. Stay tuned!

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