Street Performance/Art

In Singapore, it is not quite common to find street performers along the streets. There are only singers and people who play musical instruments who perform along crowded streets.  However they are very rare.

When I came to Europe, I experienced what street performance is all about. I realized that there are many other talented people who busk along the streets and even on the public transportation such as the train. Besides singing or playing a musical instrument, there are some street artists as well. They draw pictures on the floor using spray paint, or even perform dangerous stunts!

Well, here’s an overview of the many different street performances I have witnessed.

Role Play/Costumes

In Covent Garden in London, there are many people who dress up in costumes and role play the different characters. It is funny to see people dressed up! I saw a faceless man, Mr Bottle man, a golden statue, a pirate, a silver gladiator and a dog in a kennel.

They not only dress up, they also act out their roles. For example, the pirate will speak with a ‘pirate’ accent and will walk as though he is drunk. It is really amusing.

Art

In Koln, I found artist who used the floor as their canvas. They used chalk and spray paint to draw on the floor! It is really interesting. The drawings that they drew were so life-like and real. They were beautiful and were true works of art. The artists are so talented. I was blown away by their talent.

Music

This duo is very interesting. The guy playing the saxophone is carrying the guitar guy. Can you imagine how hard that is? Well, if you want to see them perform live, you can spot them at the entrance of the flea market at Arkonaplatz. Besides that, I found a marching band playing music very entertaining as they had movements accompanying their music.

Stunts

Dangerous stunts are also performed. For example, this man is balancing on his stomache high up in the air and he is attempting to juggle. Well, it is very difficult to do that and I felt quite scared for him when I watched him as I was worried for his safety as it was very dangerous.

I feel that they are talented people. Some of them are really good and very entertaining. Sometimes, I wonder why people busk. Is because they can’t find a job? Or is it because they are independent artist who are just waiting for their opportunity to make it in the entertainment industry?

Bye (:

WE WILL ROCK YOU!

Another show that I watched in London was “We Will Rock You”the musical of Queen and Ben Elton.  It was held at The Dominion Theatre on Tottenham Court Road, London.  Greeting you at the entrance to the theatre is a huge statue of Freddie Mecury, who is the lead vocalist and songwriter of the rock band Queen.

So far, 11 million people have watched this show! It is indeed a worldwide success and is shown in many countries.

Here’s a brief storyline:

The story is set in the future where Earth’s name has been changed to Planet Mall. Everywhere on the planet, people watch the same movies, listen to computer-generated music, wear the same clothes and hold the same thoughts and opinions. Musical instruments and composers are forbidden, and rock music is unknown. They are controlled by the Worldwide mega-corporation Globalsoft, which is headed by the “Killer Queen”. Those who dare to stand against Globalsoft are kidnapped and “brain stormed” into submission.

However, there is a small group of Bohemians” who attempts to restore the free exchange of thought, fashion, and live music. Galileo Figaro is the hero who can restore freedom.Together with his love interest, Scaramouche, Galileo joins with the Bohemians to find the lost guitar of Queen, and overthrow Globalsoft. However, when the Bohemians are captured and brain stormed, Galileo and Scaramouche are forced to flee for their lives…

Hmm, I’d better not give you the ending. You will have to go and watch it yourself. The storyline is thin, but the main attraction is the great music and sound effect, as well as a great stage set and costumes.

All the songs that they sang were All-Time favourite hits. They were all Queen classics such as ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’, ‘Somebody to Love’, ‘We Will Rock You’, ‘We are the Champions’ and many more. I felt that the songs were very catchy and the tune remained stuck in my head until a week later. The songs were very loud and the actors were very energetic and really engaged the crowd very much.

It was a musical and a live concert at the same time! I really loved this musical and enjoyed myself very much. It is definitely a must-see! Guess what? It’s coming to Berlin this October!! Do catch it! You won’t regret it, I promise.

Here’s a poster I saw at the S-Bahn Station.

Bye (:

p.s: For more information on the concert details such as venue,dates and ticket price, please visit “We Will Rock You” official website @ http://www.wewillrockyou.de

The Phatom of the Opera

London is a city full of musicals. So, when I visited London, I had to grab the opportunity to watch a musical. After some recommendation from friends, I decided to watch the famous musical ‘The Phantom of the Opera’.  It is the longest running Broadway show and is very lucrative as many people still want to watch it.

‘The Phantom of the Opera’ is based on the novel by French writer Gaston Leroux. However, it is most well-known as a musical which is adapted by Andrew Lloyd Webber. The set and costumes were amazing. The actors were also very good and they managed to engage the audience. It has a very interesting storyline and the love that the Phantom had for Christine is so strong and overwhelming that it will move you and may seem scary and possesive at times. Overall, I think that it is worth it to watch this musical as it is really very good.

Recently, a sequel to ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ titled ‘Love Never Dies’ has been released. I have yet to watch it and hope to watch it soon as I believe it will be a splendid production.

Bye (:

Corrine May – Singer/Songwriter

The first time I heard a Corrinne May song was on the radio 3 years ago. Since then, I have become a fan of hers by following her on Facebook and listening to her songs regularly. The belief of hope, of looking beneath the surface, and seeking a deeper beauty and meaning to the everyday moments of life; have driven and inspired singer-songwriter Corrinne May.

Her songs are so moving and inspiring that it makes you want to listen to more of her songs. Corrinne May writes her own original songs, which I feel is meaningful as some pop songs nowadays are so generic and uncreative. The melodies of her songs are very catchy, and will make you want to sing along with her. I also feel that she has a soulful voice which she can use to make an impact on people and create a lasting impression.

Her latest album is titled “Beautiful Seed” and for the title song, Corrinne May reflected about the sanctity of life, the reality that we all began life, in essence as a ‘seed’, and the difference one person’s life can make.  She explains: “My goal in writing a lot of these songs was to make an album full of hope, full of optimistic joy. I think we often forget how the smallest, most seemingly insignificant things can have such beautiful possibilities. All it takes is one person to make a difference in this world. People like Mother Teresa, Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. testify to this fact. But often, we are so afraid to try, to speak up, or to make a difference.”

In August 2007, I attended her concert in Singapore’s University Cultural Center Hall where she debut her “Beautiful Seed” album to a sold-out concert. I was very excited as it was the first time that I will be hearing Corrine May sing on a live stage. She was a great performer and entertained the crowd with her humor. The audiences were mesmerized by her songs and voice. After that, I even managed to get her autograph and took a picture with her! She was a really nice and friendly person up close.

I feel that Corrinne May is indeed a very talented singer-songwriter. I really look forward to her future albums and concerts. She always has something new to showcase to the music arena in terms of her musical style and original songs.

I especially like this song titled ‘Journey’ and is featured in Corrine May’s debut album titled “Fly Away”. I really like this song as the words are meaningful and reflect what we may feel during emotional times. Life is indeed a long, long journey. Hope you enjoy it too.

Bye (:

Swan Lake Ballet

I have only watched musicals or plays, where there will be dialogues between people. So, watching a ballet, where there was only music and dancing, was an interesting experience for me as I didn’t know what to expect. When I was in St Petersburg, Russia, I had the opportunity to watch the famous ballet ‘Swan Lake’ in The Palace Theatre. Swan Lake is Tchaikovsky‘s first ballet score and is well-known throughout the world.

There are 4 acts altogether: The Party, Discovering Swan Lake, Deception and The Resolution.

Here’s a short synopsis of Swan Lake:

During Prince Siegfried’s birthday celebration, his mother gives him a crossbow and informs him that because he is of age now and that he will have an arranged marriage. He takes his crossbow and makes haste to the woods.

Prince Siegfried finds himself a peaceful spot by an enchanted lake where there are swans. He spots the most beautiful swan with a crown on its head. As dusk falls, the swan with the crown turns into the most beautiful young woman he has ever seen. Her name is Odette, the Swan Queen. She informs the young prince that an evil sorcerer, Von Rothbart, has turned her and the other girls into swans. The spell can only be broken if a virgin prince swears eternal infidelity to her.

Prince Siegfried falls madly in love with Odette. However, through a spell by the evil sorcerer, he accidentally proposes to another woman at a party, believing that the woman is really Odette. Princess Odette feels doomed. She threatens to kill herself and throws herself into the lake. The Prince feels terribly sorry and throws himself into the lake with her. In an incredibly touching moment, the two are transformed into lovers in the afterlife.

Here’s some pictures for your viewing pleasure. Enjoy!

  

 

It was truly a memorable night. The dancers were so graceful and talented. They danced in synchronized movements and showed great beauty when they danced that they captivated the whole audience. Even though there was no dialogue, their movements were able to keep the audience entertained and glued to their every move for the whole 1.5 hours.

 To watch a short clip on ‘Swan Lake’, please click this Youtube link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WmgfOXr-rZw

You can see how synchronized the dancers were. They must have practiced very hard to reach this perfection!

Swan Lake Ballet was certainly a joy to watch! I really enjoyed this experience and will look forward to another dance/ballet show. I would highly recommend you to watch this ballet as it will be an unforgettable experience.

Bye (:

My Berlin Cooking Experience

In Singapore, I hardly cook. Usually, Uripah, my domestic worker, will be the one who cooks. If not, food is cheap and can be easily bought from hawker centers. Sometimes it is even cheaper to buy from outside rather than cook it yourself.But here in Berlin, where I want to become more independent, I have started to cook some simple dishes.

Instant Noodles

The first thing that I cook was instant noodles and eggs. Instant noodle is one of the greatest inventions by the Japanese. It is so convenient to cook and it provides a filling meal. But of course, you can’t eat this everyday as there is a lot of MSG(sodium) which is bad for your health. Yes, it is easy and fast to cook, it only takes 3 minutes, but I was quite proud of myself when it was completed.

Spaghetti

Yes, the all-time favourite thing amongst students is Spaghetti. It is also easy to cook as you only need to buy the sauce and add it to the noodles. Furthermore, it is very filling as well. I normally cook sausages and an egg to go with the noodles, so that I can have a complete meal.

Fish Fingers & Sausage

Actually, this is not counted as cooking; it’s just merely heating up frozen food like fish fingers and putting the sausages into the oven. And after 15 minutes, you have a meal!

Hmm, it sounds as if I can’t cook. But that’s really the case. I really can’t. I have some friends here who can whip up a nice hearty meal. For instance, they can cook beef stew and white asparagus. Well, I guess I should learn from them and experiment myself. I have 2 more months to try and experiment. Who knows, maybe I’ll fall in love with cooking.

Bye (:

My Neighbourhood

In class today, Mr Birkenkrahe taught us how to use Microsoft Visio to create a Business Information System diagram. I found this software very interesting as it enables you to create a visual aid to help you explain some stuff more clearly than using words.

I made a picture of my neighbourhood, Tanah Merah, in Singapore using the tools and shapes. It was really addictive to play around with the tools.

This is the environment that I grew up in. As you can see, it is densely populated and there are a lot of buildings cluttered together, unlike in Berlin. Being closely built, you can go everywhere on foot and all the different amenities are located nearby for your convenience!

Well, if you have the opportunity, you can come visit Singapore and see the difference in buildings and environment. In Singapore, there are many high-rise buildings meant for commercial and residential usage. I used to live on the 21st floor!

Microsoft Visio is a really cool software. I will install this programme and use it for future projects or just for fun!

Bye (:

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