Wednesday, April 29, 2009

“The 100 Words Project" at KLPac

KLPac Presents

Poetry or drunken nonsense?

klpac's Theatre for Young People (T4YP) program is back after a hugely successful first season...
And this new lot is not wasting any time at all! Having survived the grueling auditions, all sixteen T4YP members are diving head on into their first project! This year's take on THE 100 WORDS PROJECT will be completely different. With the help of director Chris Ling and writing workshop facilitator Mark Beau de Silva, they've put together a show based on their personal stories. It will feature scenes and monologues written in exactly 100 words each, no more and no less.

The word count may be arbitrary but the motive is not. Funny or serious? Poetry or drunken nonsense? We've got the lot, we suspect!

Be the first to see the T4YP gang in action and look out for more T4YP performances @ KLPac.


Director: CHRIS LING

Executive Producer: DATO’ FARIDAH MERICAN

Artistic Director: JOE HASHAM

Date & Time:
1 – 2 MAY 2009 @ 8:30 PM

3 MAY 2009 @ 5:00 PM and 7:30PM (special offsite staging)

Free Admission

Box Office:
(KLPac) 4047 9000

Venue Website:

Facebook Event link:

Monday, April 27, 2009

Book Worm Alert!

One of the nicer perks of me moving to the new office in this past month is that I am now close to the area in PJ where several companies usually have their warehouse sales at. One of the warehouse sales that I always look forward to is the one organized by the MPH Distributions which as many would know supply books to the MPH Bookstores in Malaysia. Based on past experience of going to their warehouse sales over the years, they normally would have decent selections and more importantly recently released titles on sale. With that I mind, I’m excited about their warehouse sale that would be starting tomorrow up to the 3rd of May.

(Map to MPH Warehouse Sale location)

For all book lovers, this is a great opportunity for you to stock up on the titles that you have wanted to buy but have delayed the purchase due to the current economic uncertainties. I know I have been postponing my book purchases since I learnt about the book sale in hopes of getting the titles that I want at the sales for a cheaper price. Thanks to my office being just a stone’s throw away from warehouse sale, I would be able to go and browse the books during my lunch break instead of waiting for the weekend when there would indubitably be more people there. Suffice to say, the sale would definitely fall into one of the highlights of my week this week.

I was able to find quite a few treasures for cheap the last time I went to a book sale and will definitely be on the lookout for more of the same this time around. Similar minded book lovers should also do the same when you get a chance to come to the sale.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Bard at KLPac

The Australian High Commission & KLPac Presents
in conjunction of
Australia Month @ klpac

A Shakespearean Showcase

This public theatrical showcase is a culmination of a 3-week Shakespeare workshop "From the Page and onto the Floor", directed by Jeff Kevin and featuring all 15 participants. The works that will be explored include Twelfth Night, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Hamlet and Romeo and Juliet.

"From the Page and onto the Floor" was a workshop conducted by Jeff Kevin and targeted at theatre practitioners. The workshop aims to provide a platform for each performer to develop his or her own way of playing Shakespearean roles while respecting the rules and techniques that are necessary for performance.

Jeff Kevin was a fellow of the University of Wollongong in 2004, Head of Music and Drama School at University of Wollongong from 2001 – 2003 and also Acting Associate Dean in 2003. Besides that, Jeff has taught at various other institutions including TAFE and UNSW. His experiences on stage as a performer and off stage as a director are as wide as they are varied. On TV, he is best known for his work in the television series Number 96.

Australia month @ KLPac is presented by The Australian High Commission, Malaysia, and KLPac.



Date & Time:
24 – 25 APRIL 2009 @ 8:30 PM
25 – 26 APRIL 2009 @ 3:00 PM (Matinee shows)


RM 10

Box Office:
(KLPac) 4047 9000

Venue Website:

Facebook Event link:

Monday, April 20, 2009

Singapore Trip '09 – Day 03: Hitting the Malls & Getting Back

Thanks to Air Asia retiming our return flight, we ended up with an extra 2 hours to spend in Singapore before our flight at 7:10pm. Having decided that we would want to try to avoid the evening rush on the MRT to get to Changi Airport, we decided that we would need to make sure that we would be at the MRT heading to the airport by or before 4pm. The plan would give us some time to hit the malls after we check out of the hotel while waiting for our flight. We also had the chance to spend a little more time with our Singaporean host who graciously offered to drive us around town.

Our first stop was at a hawker center opposite the Great World City Mall near the River Valley development area. I have always been fascinated by the hawker food culture and was looking forward to experience it for myself on this trip. Since we arrived quite early, we decided to walk across the street to the mall to browse while the hawkers were setting up for the day. We ended up browsing for books at the Harris Bookstore in the mall which had a book sale on the day that we were there. We didn’t really find anything that caught our attention there but we did end up buying some CDs instead at the That CD Shop store which had a really good selection of CDs.

After our short shopping excursion, we returned to the hawker center where the lunch crowd was just getting started. I had a taste of the local version of the Singapore Rojak that was recommended to me by my parents when I told them I was going there. I have to say that it was quite good especially with the dried squid that they added to the dish. It was also my first time tasting the strange looking century egg which was totally different from the salted duck eggs that I’m more used to. The jelly-like texture of the century egg definitely took a bit to get used to but it was not as salty as I expected it to be.

After my culinary adventure of the day, we proceeded to the Borders bookstore at Wheelock Place near Orchard Road. Having whetted our appetites for books at Harris, we decided to just focus on book shopping for the rest of the day. The Borders at Wheelock was quite big with the expected range of book selections for the bookstore chain. Prices were fairly equivalent to what I could expect to find in KL so I didn’t end up buying much since I already have quite a few books in my to read pile at home. We took a break from book browsing and had some refreshment at the nearby N.Y.D.C Café and Restaurant. It was hard not to be tempted by their line of sinfully delicious chocolate drinks and desserts so we ended up ordering some of them to have there while we rested.

Since my travelling companion was trying to track down a particular book to purchase while we were there, we proceeded to the Kinokuniya bookstore at the nearby Takashimaya Shopping Center in Orchard Road. It felt more crowded than the one that we have in KLCC but I had a great time browsing through their graphic novel section. There were more than a few items there that I would have loved to purchase but I decided to be responsible and defer them when I had more to spare. We didn’t stay long at the book store as they didn’t have the book that my travelling companion was looking for but they did direct us to their branch at Bugis Junction mall which could reserve a copy for us to come and pick up.

We left Orchard Road around 4pm and proceeded to Bugis Junction which was not far from where our hotel was. We thank and said goodbye to our gracious Singapore host there as it would be our last stop before taking the MRT to the airport. We soon made our way through the crowd at Bugis Junction and found the Kinokuniya bookstore fairly quickly as we wanted to make sure that we were at the station before the afternoon rush hour started. After getting the book from the bookstore, we proceeded to the Bugis MRT station to get on the MRT heading towards Tanah Merah station. From there, we had to switch trains and get on the one that serviced the extension line between Tanah Merah station and Changi Airport.

After checking in for our return flight, we went to have an early dinner at the Popeyes Chicken & Biscuits fast food chain at the terminal. We choose it since we both can’t remember is we ever seen the chain in Malaysia and it was near where we checked in for our flight. Once we were done with our dinner, we proceeded to the gate where our plane would be taking off and was soon enough on board for the flight back. Other than a little turbulence on the way in thanks to the raining weather, the flight itself was uneventful. We touched down on time at LCCT and continued our journey on to KL Sentral by the Skybus service. We finally reached home at around 10pm after taking a cab from KL Sentral.

Singapore was not quite like what I expected prior to coming on this trip. Having not been able to spend a lot of time outside of the hotel or office in previous visits, I was pleasantly surprised by the architecture that have been restored and incorporated into the more modern surroundings. There was still a lot of charm to be found in the restored neighborhoods despite the proliferation of more modern buildings in Singapore’s skyline. I would definitely like to spend more time next time to walk around and seem more of what they have restored. Having the opportunity to make new friends on this trip was an added bonus and I look forward to see them again the next time we come into town. Fortunately for me, that would not be too long as we already made plans for a return visit in June for the Singapore Arts Festival.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

“AIR CON" at KLPac

Instant Cafe Theatre & KLPac Presents


Chep and Burn are top students in SM Sultan Ahmad Tajuddin Mukarram Shah, an elite school in Kedah. Burn is the school’s golden boy (Head Prefect, Captain of the Hockey Team) and his best friend Chep is feared and admired by the younger boys for his quick temper and skill on the hockey field. The school is well respected for its strong academic and sports record.

However the discovery of a dead prostitute in the abandoned railway tracks near their school unravels the status quo and we discover a less golden world of bullying, sex crimes and violence. Best friends William and Asif go from innocence to experience as they are caught up in the repercussions of the murder. But who is responsible for the murder and will they be held accountable?

Air Con challenges and interrogates the hypocritical habit of turning youth into scapegoats in times of moral panic. Ultimately, it casts a gentle albeit unflinching gaze at the perilous path of male adolescence, and interrogates the heartbreaking ways in which society often expects boys to become men.

Presented in Bahasa Malaysia (Kedah dialect) and English.
With English Subtitles.
For Mature Audiences.

For more information, please visit the production website at




Date & Time:
15 - 18 APRIL 2009 @ 8:30 PM
18 - 19 APRIL 2009 @ 3:00 PM (Matinee shows)
19 APRIL 2009 @ 8:30 PM AIR CON FUNDRAISING NIGHT - minimum donation of RM100


RM 47

Box Office:
(KLPac) 4047 9000

Venue Website:

Facebook Event link:

Thursday, April 09, 2009

“A Madman’s Diary … After Gogol" at KLPac

The Australian High Commission & KLPac Presents
in conjunction of
Australia Month @ klpac



The Diary of a Madman is one of the best known works by Russian writer Nikolai Gogol and sits amongst some of the most important works of world literature. It certainly bears the trademarks of Gogol's writings where a perfectly ideal world is turned upside down by a single event or action.

This brilliant short story that has been adapted into a riveting one-act play by Will Gluth and will be staged in conjunction with australia month @ klpac. KL audiences will be the first to witness the end result of an electrifying collaboration between three equally remarkable Australians - director Joe Hasham, actor Will Gluth and designer Mark Wager.

Originally set in 1840's Russia, it has been transported to a contemporary setting. The story centres on the life of a low-ranking civil servant who yearns to be noticed by a beautiful woman, the daughter of a senior official. His diary records his gradual slide into insanity. As his madness deepens, he begins to to suspect two dogs are having a love affair and subsequently declares himself to be the King of a certain kingdom.

Get ready for a weekend of powerful theatre as consummate actor Will Gluth draws you into his world of madness.

Director: JOE HASHAM



Date & Time:
9 - 11 APRIL 2009 @ 8:30 PM
12 APRIL 2009 @ 3:00 PM (SUNDAY Matinee shows)


RM 30

Box Office :
(KLPac) 4047 9000

Venue Website:

Facebook Event link :

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Singapore Trip '09 – Day 02: A Day at the Theaters

After the late night out, we woke up around 10 am on the second day we were in Singapore. The first show that we had scheduled to see on that day would only start at 3pm which meant we had a few hours free to explore the area. After a quick shower, we went around the corner from the hotel to Purvis St. for a light brunch at a nearby noodle shop. Like many streets in the area, Purvis St was a collection of old shophouses of which some have had their interiors renovated with a more modern look. I definitely loved how they were able to preserve the old building facades and retain the charming character of the area. We were soon joined by our host in Singapore who would be going with us to watch the shows that we had planned that day.

After a wonderful brunch of noodles, we walked towards the Bras Basah Complex for a bit of book shopping. Consisting of 5 floors of book shops, the complex was definitely a book lover’s heaven. There were several shops in the complex that offered used books in a wide range of subjects as well as a big Popular bookstore for the newer releases. There was even a comic book shop on the 3rd floor there for me to indulge myself although I didn’t end up buying anything there as their back issue bins were not really well laid out for me to check their offerings. In the end, we spent nearly 3 hours there just browsing for used books and occasionally finding something that we wanted to get for ourselves.

Before the show started, I made a pit stop back at the hotel to stash away our book purchases before walking down the block to the Singapore National Library building. The show that we were watching that afternoon, Oscar Wilde’s “The Importance of Being Earnest” presented by the W!ld Rice Theater Company, was being staged at the Drama Center Theater located inside the National Library building. We met up with some friends who were there to watch the same show at the theater foyer for some light refreshment before proceeding to the theater to watch the play.

I have not actually seen a production of or even read the play despite it being one of Wilde’s most enduring pieces. The W!ld Rice production further spiced things up by casting an all male cast for the play and not having actors who play the female roles dressed in drag. They were instead dressed in Victorian inspired suits which, while tailored for men, had a distinctively female feel in cut and embellishment to the design to set them apart from the suits that the male characters wore. I will definitely keep this production in mind as a baseline for comparison with future productions that I might go and see.

We left the Drama Center at around 6 pm to head out to the Esplanade Theater where they were staging Shakespeare’s “A Winter’s Tale” directed by Sam Mendez as part of The Bridge Project. This was the play that we had planned the trip around and I was excited to finally be there to watch it. We made a stop at one of the shops at the Esplanade Mall for some souvenirs before proceeding to the nearby ThaiExpress café by the Bay for a Thai dinner. We made a stop at Max Brenner Chocolate Bar for desserts afterwards and stayed there just until they called the show. Thanks to our friend in Singapore, we managed to get seats which I fairly sure was among the best seating locations in the house where we settled down and waited anxiously for the show to start.

“A Winter’s Tale” was also one of the Shakespeare works that I have never read about before so I came into the show with not knowing what to expect. As the show progressed and I was able to catch on with the language, I found myself mesmerized by both the story and the wonderful performances by the actors on stage. There were parts that was a bit slow and, being as tired as I was already by that time, hard to focus on but there were quite a few moments both in the story and performances that managed to keep me hooked on what was happening on stage. The production was not exactly what I imagined a Shakespearian production to be as while they kept the language of the original text, the production was set in a different setting and age than it was in the original text.

The show ended around 11pm and we took a walk back from the Esplanade to Bugis Street. We stopped for a late night supper where I tried the Singaporean version of Roti Canai and Murtabak. I have to say that I personally felt that the Singaporean Roti Prata was not as good as our local version since they don’t fluff it up like they do here to make it softer. As for the murtabak that I had, it was definitely different than what we know as murtabak here. I didn’t end up enjoying the murtabak I ordered as I had to pick out small pieces of chicken bones that got mashed up with my murtabak filling. Once we done with our supper, we walked down the street back to the hotel where we ended out day at the theaters that day sometime around midnight.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Singapore Trip '09 – Day 01: Getting There and the Night Out

This trip came about early last year when we heard that “The Winter’s Tale” was coming to Singapore as part of The Bridge Project world tour. With the help of a friend in Singapore, we were able to get really good seats for the March show and with that we started to make flight and accommodation plans to attend the show. It was later that we also found out that Oscar Wilde’s “The Importance of Being Earnest” was being staged by the Wild Rice theater group during the same weekend that we were there. Having not seen a production of the play before, I agreed to include a matinee performance of it in our trip itinerary and got tickets for the show too. In the end, the Singapore trip turned out to be more of a cultural excursion than my usual type of trips abroad.

Since my travelling companion was working on the Saturday that we suppose to travel, we decided to take an afternoon flight into Singapore. We departed from Sunway at around 2pm and reached KL Sentral just in time to catch the Air Asia Skybus to go to LCCT. We were cutting it close since the bus was scheduled to arrive at LCCT around an hour before boarding. As luck had it, the bus that we were on experienced a mechanical failure and we had to switch buses on the way to LCCT. Fortunately we did not have to wait long by the roadside before the replacement bus came but it was sufficient for us to be anxious about missing the flight. We eventually arrived 15 minutes later than scheduled at LCCT and were able to check in 10 minutes before the flight boarded.

Due to the current renovation work, LCCT was bit of a mess. The new international departure terminal was not opened yet the last time I was at the airport coming back from my Langkawi trip last December. It has been now and we were directed to go to the departure gate at the international departure terminal. To get there, we had to go out of the checking area and walk around the building, go up a set of escalators before clearing immigration at the immigration area. It was then another walk down a set of escalators before reaching the departure gates. On the plus sides, there are more shops at the departure area but getting there is a bit of a walk until they finish the renovation work in the area that connected the international departure with the flight check in area.

Our flight took off late due to problems with the power unit that ran the internal air conditioning system. Suffice to say that all of us were happy to finally be in the air after sweating it out for at least 10 minutes while the got the problem resolved. The remainder of the flight passed without incident and eventually we touched down at Terminal 1 of Changi Airport in Singapore. The airport seemed smaller than I remembered it but I quickly realized that the last time I was in Singapore, I came through Terminal 2 via a MAS flight which was much larger. After almost an hour to clear immigrations, thanks to the long queues from several flights coming in at the same time as ours, we made our way to the MRT station at Terminal 2 to catch a train to town.

We got of the Bugis MRT station and walked down the road to look for Middle Road where our hotel was located. It turned out that it was not far from where the station we got off and soon enough we arrived at our hotel. Just as we were checking in, our friends who we already made plans to go out with that night arrived to pick us up. We asked them to wait while we went up for a quick shower and to stow our bags away. Once we came back down, the four of us hailed down a cab right in front of the hotel to go to Clarke Quay for dinner.

Clarke Quay was an interesting place to walk around at night. Consisting of 5 blocks of refurbished warehouses, Clarke Quay offers a variety of dining and entertainment options for visitors and locals alike. I loved the way that the original warehouse facades were retained and incorporated into the modern architecture design of the area. Even with the giggle inducing canopy support struts (look at them from the opposite sides to understand why), it was a nice place to spend the evening at and I hope to get back to again since I didn’t really get to spend much time there during our evening walk which eventually led us to the Japanese themed Central shopping mall. We proceeded down to the food court below it to have dinner at a recommended eatery which served dishes at a fraction of the price that one would have to pay for a similar item in a normal restaurant. Once dinner was done, we took a cab just outside of the food court to go to Kreta Ayer Road in Chinatown.

We started our walking tour of the area at DMYK for drinks. Since we arrived very early in the night, around 9pm or so, the place was totally empty with the exception of us and the staff. We stayed there for just the first rounds of drinks before we decided to move on to the next place just as people started to come in. We walked around the corner towards Tantric and unsuccessfully tried to find a place to sit at the outdoor seating area. We didn’t really want to hang around inside Tantric as the place was filling up fast and they didn’t really have a lot of seating inside that we can go to. After the cursory round inside Tantric, we decide to walk down Neil Street towards Duxton Plain Park to head into Tanjong Pagar.

We ended up at a friend’s drinking establishment near Duxton Hill where we spent most of the night with good drinks and bar food. Since we had an early day the following morning, we decided to call it a night at around 1 am and return to our hotel. We walked down a bit near the area where the Thian Hock Keng temple was located. Like most of the shophouses that we saw during our walk that night, it was beautifully preserved in its original state surrounded by the more modern establishments. I wished that I had more time to walk in the area and enjoy the preserved architecture but we were there to get a taxi back to our hotel at Bugis Street. We finally arrived at the hotel around 1:30am tired but thoroughly enjoyed our night out in Singapore.

I did bring my camera along in this trip but somehow other than the very few pictures that I took of the hotel room, I didn’t take any pictures at all of the places that we went to. I guess it was due to a combination of not wanting to hold people up while I took pictures and the whirlwind pace of our itinerary there that prevented me from taking the usual travel pictures to accompany my travel blog entries.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Calling All Budding Stage Writers and Directors!

KLPac Presents

As part of the Australia Month at KLPac, Short+Sweet theater festival returns to the venue from 3 – 5 April 2009. This time around, Short+Sweet dance festival is also offered in conjunction of the event for those who wish to explore dance as a performing art. Among the activities lined up are the scriptwriting and directing workshops conducted by Alex Broun from Australia. Anyone who wants to try their hand at either are encouraged to join and explore the possibilities.

Workshop Date: 3 – 5 April 2009
Workshop Venue: klpac
Registration Fee: RM10
To Register: e-mail /

Workshop schedule

Friday April 3, (7pm – 10pm) Playwriting - Beginners

Saturday April 4, (10am - 1pm) Directors - Beginners
Saturday April 4, (2pm - 5pm) Playwriting - Intermediate

Sunday April 5, (10am - 1pm) Directors - Intermediate
Sunday April 5, (2pm - 5pm) Directors / Playwrights – Intermediate (combined session)
Sunday April 5, (7pm – 9pm) Public Reading / Showcase

Workshop description :

Short+Sweet Scriptwriting Course: Beginners

This course is designed for people who have often thought about writing for the theatre but have never given it a go. It aims to inspire you to start writing and give you the tools to write that 10-minute play to enter for Short+Sweet Malaysia.

Short+Sweet Scriptwriting Course: Intermediate

This course is designed for people who have already written for the stage and perhaps come to the course with the first draft of a 10-minute play. It is also suitable if you’ve completed the Beginners Course.

It aims to equip you with further scriptwriting skills to refine your play and to workshop the first draft.

Short+Sweet Directing Course: Beginners

This course is designed for anyone who has ever thought about directing theatre but has never had the opportunity to try.

Short+Sweet Directing Course: Intermediate

This course is designed for people who have some experience in directing in theatre (or another medium such as film) and would like to learn more about the craft of directing or explore different approaches. It is also suitable for those who have completed the Beginners course.

Short+Sweet Directors & Playwrights (combined session)

In this final session you will work with actors to direct a short scene that will be presented at the end of the workshop, utilising the techniques you have explored during the course.

After scenes are presented you will receive feedback from Alex on further areas you might like to develop.

For more details, visit the KLPac events listing at