Thursday, 10 December 2009

Natrah: Technical bits and other stuff

2 days after watching Natrah, and post-reading Ajami Hashim's review at

Thanks Ajami for reminding me of the backstory right at the opening, I agree that was important information that was too rushed. That frustrated me because I had to refer to the programme book in the dark to try and read up so I could get a sense of what the set-up was.

Since Ajami has mentioned technical aspects of the show, I have to tokok tambah here too I guess. Istana Budaya's in-house audio technical facilities alone cannot support a production. Unfortunately, if a production team doesn't have the means or resources to hire "outside" additional equipment, you will only find out when a production is already at technical rehearsal stage or worse still, on opening night, by which time it will be too late to make changes as it involves additional rigging and would involve a whole extra day of additional tech runs to test out the sound. Most unfortunately, the point about poor audio quality seems to be a struggle only a few of us notice (though in my books, a play is ALL about that you HEAR, besides what you see, or you will have no idea what the drama is all about). Thank goodness there were English subtitles on the side, but how ridiculous is it to have to watch a play whilst reading subtitles the whole way!

When we put PGL and P Ramlee on stage, we had no choice but to hire sound equipment and sound engineers that cost the production hundreds of thousands of RM. Sigh. Hopefully somewhere down the road, I.B will consider upgrading its inhouse audio facilities so that the cost needn't be borne by independent producers like me!

On the matter of subtitles, I feel even songs need to be subtitled, especially if the songs are in any way part of the story telling, otherwise you will lose the subtitle-dependent audience for a big part of the evening.

However, all grouses and niggly bits aside, Natrah was still a very commmendable effort on the part of Erma Fatimah and the Istana Budaya team. It's no mean feat putting together a production of ANY size, big or small, it still takes blood, sweat and tears to get a show off the ground and running on stage, so my hats off to IB, Erma and their dedicated team of actors and crew for that.

I need to make a special mention of the sets which I felt were quite impressive, especially the final cathedral scene and the huge statue of Mary. I spotted a Jewish design element in the Cathedral scene that, if was meant to be deliberate is fine, otherwise it couldn't be right in a Roman Catholic church. But not many people would know and even bat an eyelid anyway. Its nice to see that sets are designed to be much more mobile these days, and scene changes much smoother because of this.

The back projection was also very impressive. I'm glad I.B decided to hire the same team that worked on both PGL as well as P.Ramlee Musicals, working on our back projections because these are tried-and-tested people who have run more than 100 performances in the past with us.

I do see the evolution of our theatre industry today, having been on stage in all manner and size of stage productions for almost 20 years (!). There really does seem to be hope in sight for our industry. We just need everyone to continue to believe in it, be genuinely interested in it and support it, from the top down. We need to continuously produce compelling writing/stories, think of innovative new ways to put on shows, and train more and more new people all across the value chain. Corporations and the government can be the greatest help where providing funding is concerned, because quality costs and ticket collections alone cannot guarantee returns. And the audience, needs to hang on in there whilst we get our act together, to try and continuously provide Malaysia with artistic entertainment of an acceptable quality.

take a bow, Erma.

my thoughts after watching NATRAH last night

Hmmmmm… I should have blogged about it whilst it was fresher in my mind last night. C’est la vie. And now, looking back on what’s turned out to be 2 whole pages LOL of my thoughts, I’m hoping this comes out well and doesn’t offend anyone along the way.
What’s really encouraging is that I hear tickets have been sold out, and that they are extending the show a further 4 nights, that is FANTASTIC news for the theatre industry. And Natrah isn’t even a musical, it’s a straight play. Well, I assume it was meant to be just a straight play, and that the song and dance sequences were an afterthought.

Sofia Jane is engaging in her monologue as the older Natrah. Erma can always rely on tried-and-tested steady actors like her, Umie and Samantha to deliver the goods, and they did. Sometimes I like to see an actor give herself more of a “journey” though, especially when delivering a 15 minute piece like she had to, so he or she starts at a certain point and continues to grow and develop along the way, and you keep me as the audience glued cos I want to know how this could surprise me at the next corner. However, this may well be a directing choice, to have the actor hold the same intensity throughout the piece.

Between the older and younger Natrah character, if I wanted to nit-pick, I’d say the one flaw would have been the very different accents both actresses chose. The older Natrah spoke in Bahasa Indonesia, whereas Maya’s Natrah spoke Bahasa Malaysia. It’s no major issue, but I wonder where the Indonesian accent would have come from if she had lived her next 40 or 50 years in Holland and never had one (the accent) as a child.
Umie was flawless in her portrayal of Aminah. She looked the part, and I could see the natural mother in her come through in many well-played scenes. She had me in tears in the scene where Natrah is forcefully taken away from her mother. Puteh’s last words were “Puteh tunggu Mak” or something to that effect, very heartbreaking.

In the following scene, mother and daughter are united at the Convent Natrah is being kept in. I expected a real emotional, joyous moment of reunion to follow, after that painful separation. I know I would have been all over my daughter, not allowing her out of my sight throughout the time I was with her. It would have been a wonderful opportunity to affirm the mother-daughter bond between them. Instead, her friemd Mak Wok joins her, with her son Mansor Adabi, who is introduced to Natrah at this point. Minah and Mak Wok leave the couple to “get to know one another”, and they have a little eyelash fluttering moment. I, as the audience, am left feeling Aminah didn’t really need to go through all that drama in the previous scene, she looked quite unaffected by events by the time they did get reunited.

Anyway, Mansor later marries 13-year old Natrah. I’m looking at the pair on their “wedding” night, and Mansor tells Natrah, “I have made a promise to your mother that I will not touch you till you til you are old enough to properly be my wife” but the body language of the actors were telling me SUMTHIN ELSE, honayh! It took the purity out of the relationship in a sense for me. And Mansor Adabi was depicted like any other lustful man, maybe able to hold his naughty thoughts one, twice… but who knows what might just happen when the devil comes a-knocking a third time? Hee hee..
One of the more powerful scenes for me was when Erma had the 3 women in their solo spots, and we get into their heads and hearts and hear their anguish and their individual suffering. I felt for Samantha as Adeline, the Dutch mother who has lost the daughter she gave birth to. I must say this was the most fair depiction of the Natrah tale I’d heard so far.

The bummer for me came at the end of this scene, when Mansor Adabi breaks into a song, and Maya’s Natrah is joined by an ensemble of dancers and she breaks into modern ballet movements. Another beautiful moment crushed for me.

Erma is known for being very bold and brave in all her work, and I must say her portrayal of churches, crucifixes and Malays playing nuns and vicars is ground-breaking enough for our very kolot industry and the censorship board boys. Way to go Erma! 10 years ago, Hani Mohsin playing a soldier in disguise as a Buddhist monk kicked up such a ruckus.

On the whole, I wish the drama could have been based on human issues rather than as in the case of Aminah crying out to Adeline, “I cannot have Natrah taken away from me because she is now a Muslim, who will teach her to pray, to fast?” Adeline was sensible enough not to have told yelled back, “that’s YOUR problem, really!” Because in this version of the story, it DID appear that Aminah was wrong for not returning Natrah to her lawful natural parents, whatever their religion was. I wished there could have been a heart-to-heart talk between the two mothers. Adeline obviously had trusted Aminah once to take care of Natrah, they must have had a special enough relationship there, and now that it had come to this, I would imagine Adeline trying to appeal to the person inside Aminah to understand her plight.

OK said too much already. All in, I’m glad I got the chance to watch Natrah, and I think Erma needs a huge pat on the back for pulling this off. A lot of people seem to have really enjoyed it too, and if this is anyone’s first taste of theatre, Erma has done her bit to contribute to the growing pool of theatre-goers we so badly need.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

Beauty Secrets?

An interview I just shared with the SUN today:

1) What is ONE beauty secret you can share with my readers?
Whats very attractive besides physical beauty is ENERGY, I think that's important because it's much more interesting and engaging to talk to an energetic, passionate person rather than a pretty face who doesn't seem to get very much out of life. I load myself up on supplements and anything that keeps my immune system and energy levels up.

2) How do you maintain your figure? Tell us your diet programme?
Every now and then when I know I need to look good, I go on a special diet programme called Health Pointe, similar to the Atkins and South Beach diet in some ways. It seems to work for me. I also eat very carefully, choosing high protein,low fat meals like Sashimi or grilleded fish over Nasi Campur or Char Kueh Teow.

3) Is there any traditional beauty method such as Jamu or even mandi bunga that you used.
I believe in Jamu, it's an Indonesian secret of youth and beauty that I know works, my mother was brought up on it and tried to get me into it to. It's an alternative to modern health supplements in a way. As for Mandi Bunga, it could be more of a psychological well-being method than anything else I think...if you feel like a Kraton Princess inside, you might tend to behave more like one, perhaps? Ha Ha.

4) Did your mom share any of her beauty secrets with you and you still used them with you?
Oh yes...Besides the Jamu, a glass of water first thing upon rising. I drink a whole bottle actually.

5) How do you define beauty ?
For me, beauty is an energy, a presence, a charisma, that comes from a good place inside a person. Good looks are a plus but nowadays beauty can even be manufactured so what's the big deal.

6) do you think it is important to have positive thoughts about life to maintain your beauty?
I always say, look at a person when the cameras are not on him or her, that's when you see the real person. You can't fake these things. Whether a person has positive or negative energy or thoughts inside him, it will always shine through.

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Return of the Princess - PGL makes another return by Return of the Princess PGL makes another comeback by Nur Aqidah Azizi

Return of the Princess

PGL makes another comeback
Thursday, November 26th, 2009 09:44:00

Return of the Princess
WELL, there's more than one way to skin a cat. This is especially true in Puteri Gunung Ledang’s (PGL) case.

Since it was first brought to modern silver screen some five years ago, PGL has been through more than one transformation.

After hitting the cinemas, the big budget movie, which was produced by Enfiniti Production Sdn Bhd (EPSB) was then brought to the stage — Puteri Gunung Ledang The Musical — which ran successfully for three seasons.

So what's next for PGL? Will the fans see more facets of its being soon?

The answer is yes, with the help of Astro Citra and Astro Prima. PGL is set to be a four-part miniseries on Astro Citra’s Suatu Ketika... slot, which will premiere on Dec 2 at 9pm.

What makes this project interesting is the fact that never-before seen footages will be included in the mini series, making a director's cut of sorts. Some of them include the fighting scenes between Hang Tuah and Adipati, Tun Teja flashbacks on her romantic link with Hang Tuah as well as Hang Tuah's fighting scene with Hang Jebat.

"There is also a Kraton dance scene which has been added with special effects. However, that wasn’t included in the film and I remember that I was so sad and frustrated when the scene was cut. Now that it will finally make its way to the film in this project, I hope fans will enjoy watching it as much as the rest of us did," said PGL producer Datin Seri Tiara Jacquelina.

Astro Citra general manager, Sharlyza Alis Sharkawi said, the new look of PGL in the miniseries is definitely
something to look out for.

"It will be the original PGL movie, only how the director intended it to be. Fans must not miss this as a lot of interesting scenes will be unveiled for the first time on Astro Citra," she said.

"This is an opportunity for fans who enjoyed the movie the first time around, and for those who haven’t seen the movie yet. I believe it will be a truly unique experience."

The Suatu Ketika... slot, which is a joint campaign by Astro Citra and Astro Prima, features the fictionalised
and documentary versions of the story premiering on both channels respectively.

"For PGL, we will be screening the movie on Astro Citra, while the documentary on PGL, done by Astro's team, will be screend at Astro Prima. So, fans will be able to watch both versions of the same title through our slot," said Sharlyza at the Press conference, which was held at Rainforest Borneo Restaurant recently.

When asked, Tiara said the whole production team of PGL are honoured with the opportunity. "This project is so instrumental to me and the whole production team involved. A lot of blood, sweat and love were put into the movie. We braved the heavy rain and the storm to ensure the success of the project.

"Looking back, at times we felt that it was an impossible feat, but each and every one of us involved made it possible, somehow," said Tiara, who broke into tears as she shared her experience working on the movie.

"Time flies so fast and I can hardly believe that it has been five years since we first unveiled PGL. We have never really celebrated our success and I think it’s a great time to celebrate, in conjunction with our fifth
anniversary," she added.

"It's always a nice feeling to watch the movie again. It brings back a lot of memories. It also reminds us that
we Malaysians are capable of doing anything. There's nothing that we can't do, as long as we have the spirit
and determination to achieve it."

PGL also attracted foreign distributors who have shown interests to distribute and screen the movie at their
respective countries.

"So far, we have sold the rights to 13 countries, including Europe, Singapore, Brunei, China and Thailand,
among others. They have asked us for more films, but unfortunately, PGL is the only movie we have," said
Tiara, laughing.

For the record, PGL has secured several awards under its belt, including Best Actress (Tiara Jacquelina) at the 50th Asia Pacific Film Festival and Best Producer at the inaugural Asian Festival of Films 2005.

PGL was also the first Malaysian film to be shortlisted in the nominations for consideration in the Best Foreign Language Film category for the 77th Academy Awards.

Puteri Gunung Ledang masuk TV Oleh Zaidi Mohamad

Berita Minggu Online

Puteri Gunung Ledang masuk TV

Oleh Zaidi Mohamad

DARI kiri; Hairul, Sharlyza, Tiara dan Naufal hadir pada sidang media di Borneo Rainforest Sunway, baru-baru ini.

Drama empat episod mengisi slot Suatu Ketika di Astro Citra mulai 2 Disember

HAYAT dan legasi filem kebanggaan Datin Seri Tiara Jacquelina, Puteri Gunung Ledang (PGL) nampaknya akan terus mekar dalam ingatan penggemar karya ini. Bermula dengan cetusan menghasilkan filem terbabit menerusi sentuhan Saw Teong Hin, ia seterusnya diterjemahkan ke medium teater pada Februari 2006.

Tahun ini, berita baik sekali lagi dihebahkan apabila filem yang banyak meraih anugerah tempatan dan asing itu diformatkan ke bentuk drama sebanyak empat episod. Berdurasi selama sejam setiap satu episod, drama PGL ini mengisi slot Suatu Ketika di Astro Citra (saluran 131) mulai 2 Disember ini.

Menurut Tiara, istimewanya versi drama ini, penonton berpeluang untuk menyaksikan lima babak menarik yang sudah dipotong dan tidak dimuatkan ketika versi filem ditayangkan. Antara babak yang dimaksudkan termasuklah adegan tarian Kraton yang menyelit kesan khas dan unsur magis.

“Daripada membiarkan babak ini terbuang begitu saja, lalu peluang yang ditawarkan Astro Citra ini wajar diterima. Setidak-tidaknya penonton disajikan dengan sisi lain yang tidak ada dalam filem. Cara begini secara tidak langsung tidak akan ‘memupuskan’ karya PGL itu.

“Kewujudan versi drama ini juga mula menyingkap kembali kenangan dan momen indah serta nilai sentimental yang dikaut sewaktu penghasilan filem ini. Malah ia seiring dengan ulang tahun sambutan PGL yang kelima pada tahun ini.

“Filem ini terhasil dengan penuh kasih sayang dan dedikasi setiap orang penting yang terbabit daripada setiap sudut. Drama ini tiada beza seperti format filem yang dipecahkan menjadi empat episod. Selain empat episod, turut dimuatkan satu episod khas di sebalik pembikinan PGL,” kata Tiara yang ditemui di Borneo Rainforest Restaurant, Sunway Piramid minggu lalu.

Ditanya lagi kepada Pelakon Wanita Terbaik Festival Filem Asia Pasifik ke-50, apa yang dapat ditawarkan pihaknya untuk memastikan PGL terus terpahat dalam ingatan, Tiara memintas sambil berseloroh mengatakan kepada Hip barangkali PGL boleh dipentaskan di atas ais pula.

“Ketika ini pun buku kanak-kanak PGL dijual dan diedarkan di kedai buku MPH. Malah paling membanggakan kami, ia turut digunakan di sekolah antarabangsa sebagai bahan sokongan dan teks rujukan terutama yang membabitkan sejarah kota Melaka.

“Saya dan Datuk Zahim Al Bakri turut diundang untuk melakonkan karakter PGL di sekolah terbabit. Ia sekali gus menjadi landasan terbaik buat kami untuk terus mempromosikan PGL selagi termampu dan terus bernyawa. Siapa tahu mungkin suatu hari nanti, PGL akan tampil dalam versi animasi atau tiga dimensi pula,” katanya teruja sambil memberitahu tidak sabar menunggu babak membabitkan Hang Tuah lakonan M Nasir dan Hang Tuah (Shaharuddin Thamby) serta adegan tarian Kraton.

Tiara turut menjelaskan dengan semangat Malaysia Boleh yang kita miliki, tidak mustahil sesuatu perkara itu mampu dilakukan. PGL bukti betapa hebat karya tempatan hingga mampu menjadi filem pertama dari Malaysia yang disenarai pendek dalam pencalonan Anugerah Academy ke-77 bagi kategori Filem Bahasa Asing Terbaik.

“Dulu kita barangkali tidak bermimpi untuk merasai nikmat keseronokan dan keterujaan tercalon dalam anugerah berprestij seperti Anugerah Academy. Tapi kini ia setidak-tidaknya menjadi kenyataan yakni sebagai impak dan permulaan terbaik membuka pintu untuk menjejakkan kaki ke luar negara.

“Filem ini turut dijual dan ditayangkan di 13 buah negara luar seperti Eropah, China, Thailand dan Singapura. Cuma selepas ini orang luar sering tertanya-tanya apa lagi produk tempatan untuk dipersembahkan ke luar negara yang boleh terus dibanggakan kita selepas PGL,” katanya.

Sementara itu, Pengurus Saluran Astro Citra, Sharlyza Alis Sharkawi memberitahu perbincangan membabitkan pihaknya dan Enfiniti Productions diadakan tidak kurang dari sebulan. Ia akhirnya membuahkan kata sepakat untuk mempersembahkan PGL dalam versi drama.

“Bersesuaian dengan slot Suatu Ketika ini yang menampilkan cereka epik dan lagenda, lalu kami tidak mahu ketinggalan mengabadikan PGL sebagai buah tangan keenam mengisi slot ini. Selain drama, Astro Prima turut memaparkan dokumentari berkaitan PGL mulai 27 Disember.

“Astro Citra akan terus berusaha memaparkan drama sedemikian kepada penonton dalam usaha memberi variasi. Kejayaan drama Rosly Dhoby yang turut dimuat dalam slot yang sama sebagai Dokumentari Terbaik di Festival Dokumentari Malaysia baru-baru ini terus membakar semangat.

“Mungkin tahun depan, siapa tahu drama PGL pula akan tercalon dalam kategori tertentu. Ketika ini juga kami begitu teruja menanti keputusan drama Warkah Terakhir yang tercalon untuk kategori Siri Drama Terbaik di dalam Anugerah Televisyen Asia ke-14 pada 3 Disember ini. Drama Rosly Dhoby turut tercalon,” kata Sharlyza.

Turut hadir pada sidang media itu ialah pembantu pengarah PGL, Hairul Salleh Askor dan adik Mohd Naufal Nasrullah yang melakonkan watak Raja Ahmad, anak kepada Sultan Melaka.


  • Suatu Ketika... Puteri Gunung Ledang (PGL) disiarkan mulai 2 Disember ini bermula jam 9 malam, setiap Rabu dan sebanyak empat episod di Astro Citra.

  • Dokumentari PGL disiarkan pada 27 Disember jam 6 petang menerusi saluran Astro Prima (105).
  • Filem Puteri Gunung Ledang tanpa disunting Oleh Sakini Mohd Said

    Oleh Sakini Mohd Said

    ASTRO meneruskan lagi inisiatif dan komitmennya dalam memberi pengetahuan sejarah di kalangan rakyat Malaysia dengan mempersembahkan sebuah lagi dokumentari hebat menerusi platform Suatu Ketika yang berjudul Suatu Ketika...Puteri Gunung Ledang pada Disember ini.

    Menariknya, cerita dongeng rakyat ini yang pada awalnya difilemkan dan dipentaskan sebagai sebuah drama muzikal, kini disiarkan dalam siri pendek empat bahagian. Justeru, bagi mereka yang tidak sempat atau ketinggalan menyaksikan filem epik tempatan itu, tentu tidak mahu melepaskan peluang menyaksikannya di Astro Citra.

    Suatu Ketika...Puteri Gunung Ledang adalah siri mini yang disiarkan sebanyak empat episod yang dijayakan oleh Datin Seri Tiara Jacquelina, M Nasir dan Adlin Aman Ramlie. Melalui slot Suatu Ketika ini juga, Astro Citra dan Astro Prima turut bekerjasama menyajikan pelbagai kisah legenda dalam dua versi iaitu fiksyen dan dokumentari. Bagi versi fiksyen, ia akan disiarkan melalui Astro Citra dan versi dokumentari pula akan disiarkan menerusi Astro Prima.

    Memberi kelainan, Astro Citra bukan sekadar memaparkan kembali filem epik itu, tetapi turut memuatkan babak filem yang belum pernah dilihat sebelum ini bagi menambahkan lagi kefahaman fakta dan fiksyen sejarah mengenai cerita legenda hebat ini. Menjadi persoalan, mengapa adegan itu dipotong dan tidak ditayangkan sebelum ini?

    Menurut Pengarah Urusan Enfiniti Productions Sdn Bhd, Tiara, ada beberapa babak dalam filem itu terpaksa dipotong kerana melebihi masa tayangan yang ditetapkan.

    "Selepas ditawarkan oleh pihak Astro untuk menyiarkan filem Puteri Gunung Ledang menerusi empat siri pendek di slot Citra, saya terus bersetuju. Bagi saya, apa salahnya mengambil peluang itu kerana yakin masih ramai lagi yang ingin menonton filem itu tetapi tidak berkesempatan.

    "Lagipun, ia sebuah karya hebat hasil sentuhan semua tenaga produksi termasuk pengarahnya, Saw Teong Hin. Sayang, kalau ia dibiarkan begitu saja kerana Puteri Gunung Ledang adalah filem pertama Malaysia yang disenarai singkat dalam pencalonan Anugerah Akademi Ke-77 untuk kategori Filem Bangsa Asing Terbaik.

    "Malah, ia mencatat sejarah apabila ditayangkan dengan kutipan hujung minggu paling tinggi mencecah RM314,000 pada Ogos, 2004. Selain persada tempatan, filem epik ini juga berjaya dijual dan ditayangkan di 13 buah negara termasuklah Eropah, China dan Thailand.

    "Saya akui agak kecewa apabila beberapa adegan dalam filem itu tidak dapat ditayangkan kerana melebihi masa ditetapkan. Disebabkan itu, apabila mendapat peluang ini saya gembira kerana usaha kami bertungkus-lumus menyiapkan Puteri Gunung Ledang, akhirnya dapat dipertontonkan keseluruhan cerita.

    "Antara adegan yang belum pernah dilihat sebelum ini ialah babak Hang Tuah bermimpi bersemuka dengan Hang Jebat, Tun Mamat mengamuk apabila mendapat tahu mengenai perlantikan Hang Tuah sebagai ketua rombongan dan ketika Hang Tuah membawa lari Tun Teja atas perintah Sultan.

    "Selain dari itu, ada satu babak (tarian) yang amat menarik kerana diselitkan elemen 'magic' dan penggunaan kesan khas yang membuatkan penonton lebih teruja untuk mengetahui kesudahan cerita," katanya selepas sidang media projek Suatu Ketika...Puteri Gunung Ledang (Astro Citra) di Borneo Rainforest Restaurant, Bandar Sunway, baru-baru ini. Turut hadir di majlis itu ialah salah seorang penolong pengarah filem Puteri Gunung Ledang, Hairul Salleh Askor dan pelakon yang menjayakan watak Raja Ahmad, Muhammad Naufal Nasrullah Hamdan.

    Sementara itu, Pengurus Saluran Astro Citra, Sharlyza Alis Sharkawi berkata, pemilihan filem Puteri Gunung Ledang untuk disiarkan menerusi slot Citra, adalah terbaik dan sesuai dengan objektif mereka untuk memberi pengetahuan selain menghiburkan.

    "Sejak dilancarkan pada Jun lalu, sambutan yang diterima terhadap program Suatu Ketika... menerusi versi cereka dan dokumentari, amat memberangsangkan. Kami juga berjaya memenangi anugerah Dokumentari Akademik Terbaik dalam Festival Dokumentari Malaysia yang diadakan baru-baru ini menerusi Suatu Ketika...Rosli Dhoby.

    "Justeru, apabila melihat filem Puteri Gunung Ledang sudah ada, terfikir mengapa tidak kami bergabung tenaga untuk menyiarkannya kembali kepada penonton setia program Suatu Ketika...? Malah, kami gembira apabila Astro Citra adalah yang pertama menyiarkan keaslian filem Puteri Gunung Ledang yang sebelum ini sudah dipotong beberapa babak.

    "Bagi proses penerbitan dokumentari, pihak yang terbabit bukan Enfiniti, tetapi kami sendiri. Di sebabkan itu, ia lambat disiarkan kerana ada beberapa perkara yang belum disiapkan lagi," katanya.

    Suatu Ketika...Puteri Gunung Ledang akan disiarkan Selasa ini, 2 Disember jam 9.30 malam di Astro Citra (saluran 131). Dokumentari yang akan menyingkap sejarah dan legenda Kesultanan Melaka serta kerajaan Majapahit akan menemui penonton pada 27 Disember ini jam 6 petang, di Astro Prima.

    Hebatkah PGL versi drama? Oleh JESSABELL SOO

    Hebatkah PGL versi drama?

    APABILA filem Puteri Gunung Ledang muncul dalam versi drama setelah berjaya dalam siri teater muzikalnya sebelum ini, ia sesuatu yang cukup membanggakan Tiara selaku teraju utama.

    ANDA sudah menonton filem dan teater muzikalnya. Kini, peminat Puteri Gunung Ledang (PGL) akan berpeluang menyaksikan pula versi dramanya di saluran Astro Citra bermula hari ini.

    Menjadi filem bajet termahal dalam sejarah perfileman Malaysia dengan menelan perbelanjaan RM20 juta, PGL yang pernah menerima pelbagai pengiktirafan di luar dan dalam negara buat pertama kali akan dipertontonkan di kaca TV.

    Dibahagikan kepada empat episod dengan satu episod khas di sebalik tabir, cerita legenda kegemaran ramai itu akan disunting semula dan dimasukkan dengan lima babak baru yang sebelum ini telah dikeluarkan oleh pengarah dari dalam filem.

    ANTARA babak menarik filem Puteri Gunung Ledang membabitkan Tiara dan Christine Hakim (belakang) yang berjaya menjentik emosi penonton.

    Maka, bagi mereka yang pernah menonton filemnya yang menceritakan kisah cinta antara Gusti Putri Retno Dumilah dan Hang Tuah, anda pastinya tidak mahu melepaskan peluang untuk menyaksikan kelima-lima babak itu.

    "Drama ini akan mengembalikan banyak memori kepada penonton terutama mereka yang pernah menyaksikan filemnya lima tahun lalu. Tapi apa yang penting, anda akan menyaksikan lima babak yang tidak pernah ditonton dalam filemnya sebelum itu.

    "Ia juga satu peluang baik bagi mereka yang tidak pernah menonton filemnya. Sebenarnya ramai orang pernah bertanya mengenai babak-babak yang tidak pernah ditayangkan itu. Ini adalah masa terbaik untuk ditayangkan kepada semua di TV," kata Datin Seri Tiara Jacquelina pada sidang media mengumumkan drama itu.

    TIARA (dua dari kanan) bersama mereka di tabir PGL versi drama.

    Antara babak yang tidak pernah dilihat adalah Hang Tuah bermimpi bersemuka dengan Hang Jebat dan Tun Mamat mengamuk apabila mendapat tahu tentang pelantikan Hang Tuah sebagai ketua rombongan untuk mengalu-alukan ketibaan puteri.

    "Saya sendiri tidak sabar untuk melihat kelima-lima babak itu. Ada satu babak tarian yang menggunakan kesan khas. Ia memberikan sedikit sentuhan magis tetapi babak itu terpaksa dibuang kerana tidak konsisten dengan babak lain. Jadi saya agak sedih ketika itu apabila penonton tidak dapat melihatnya," tambah Tiara.

    Menjadi judul drama keenam untuk kempen Suatu Ketika... di Astro Citra, ada sebabnya mengapa PGL dipilih untuk menyertai kempen yang dilancarkan sejak Jun lalu. "Kempen itu memang bertujuan untuk menayangkan cerita-cerita bersejarah seperti PGL. Kami mahu menambahkan kefahaman, fakta dan fiksyen cerita itu kepada penonton," kata Pengurus Saluran Astro Citra, Sharlyza Alis.

    JIWA dan semangat Puteri Gunung Ledang sebati dalam diri wanita jelita ini.

    Bersiaran selama satu jam untuk setiap episod, proses suntingan keempat-empat episod hanya mengambil masa tidak lebih daripada sebulan. Namun, ia bukan satu tugas yang mudah memandangkan versi filemnya sudah diadun dengan bunyi.

    "Bukan senang untuk menyunting kepada empat episod kerana filemnya sudah diadun dengan bunyi. Tapi apa yang menarik, penambahan babak-babak itu akan melahirkan jalan cerita yang sedikit berbeza daripada filemnya. Ia akan memberikan lebih banyak subcerita seperti kehadiran Tun Teja," tambah Tiara yang memegang watak utama dalam PGL.

    Selain daripada empat episod itu, satu episod di sebalik tabir akan ditayangkan kepada penonton. Bukan itu sahaja, dokumentari khas PGL yang menyingkap sejarah serta legenda kesultanan Melaka dan kerajaan Majapahit akan disiarkan menerusi saluran Astro Prima pada 27 Disember, pukul 6 petang.

    "Saya berbangga dengan legenda PGL yang masih diteruskan. Cerita PGL sudahpun diterbitkan dalam buku yang digunakan oleh pelajar di sekolah antarabangsa untuk mereka mempelajari sejarah Melaka. Saya juga berharap PGL suatu hari nanti akan dilihat menerusi versi animasi," senyum Tiara mengenai filem yang sudah dijual di 13 buah negara luar.

    Jadi bagi mereka yang meminati PGL atau yang tidak sempat menonton filemnya, jangan melepaskan peluang untuk menyaksikan Suatu Ketika...Puteri Gunung Ledang pada setiap Rabu, pukul 9 malam di saluran Astro Citra (Astro 131).

    "2010 tahun sibuk buat Tiara" by Shazryn Faizal

    Utusan Online
    ARKIB : 02/12/2009

    2010 tahun sibuk buat Tiara

    TIARA Jacquelina masih lagi menyimpan hasrat untuk menerbitkan filem selepas Puteri Gunung Ledang.

    HANYA tinggal beberapa minggu sahaja lagi tahun 2010 akan membuka tirainya tetapi Datin Seri Tiara Jacquelina sudah mempunyai banyak perancangan sepanjang tahun depan.

    Mengenali wanita berhati waja ini, beliau sememangnya tidak betah duduk diam. Ada sahaja rancangannya yang dilakukan secara diam.

    Agenda utama yang sudah tercatat dalam diari seninya adalah The Enfiniti Academy yang bakal memulakan sesi pertamanya menjelang pertengahan tahun depan.

    Mungkin terlalu awal jika hendak dibincangkan tetapi jika dihitung, ia hanya tinggal enam bulan sahaja lagi sebelum ia akan direalisasikan.

    Disebabkan itu, jadual seni Tiara sentiasa padat demi memastikan institusi yang ditubuhkan hasil cetusan ideanya itu akan berjalan dengan lancar seperti mana yang dirancangkan.

    Jelas Tiara, penubuhan The Enfiniti Academy sudah lama dirancangnya iaitu sebelum dia terlibat dengan Akademi Fantasia musim ketujuh (AF7).

    Kebetulan ketika itu, tawaran menjadi pengetua AF7 hadir dulu membuatkan Tiara menangguhkan seketika perancangan tersebut.

    Memang besar sungguh harapan dan impian Tiara yang mahu terus memelihara dan memartabatkan seni persembahan di negara ini menerusi penubuhan The Enfiniti Academy.

    "Ini memang impian saya sejak dari dulu lagi dan saya sendiri tidak menyangka selepas sekian lama merancang, akhirnya ia bakal menjadi kenyataan tahun depan.

    "Buat masa ini, perbincangan di peringkat akhir sedang dilakukan oleh beberapa buah universiti di Australia untuk mereka menilai sukatan pelajaran untuk akademi saya ini.

    "Apa yang saya harapkan daripada akademi ini adalah ia mampu melahirkan anak seni yang berbakat dari pelbagai cabang seni dalam memenuhi kekosongan artis berbakat di negara ini," katanya dalam nada bersungguh.

    Beliau ditemui pada majlis pelancaran siri mini Puteri Gunung Ledang (PGL) untuk slot Suatu Ketika terbitan Astro Citra di restorannya, Borneo Rainforest, Sunway Pyramid, Petaling Jaya, Selangor baru-baru ini.

    Turut hadir Pengurus Saluran Astro Citra, Sharlyza Alis Sharkawi.

    Apa yang pasti, Tiara juga memberitahu, Stephen Rahman-Hughes, Datuk Zahim Al-Bakri dan berkemungkinan besar, Pat Ibrahim akan menjadi tenaga pengajar untuk akademi tersebut.

    Selain daripada mereka, tenaga pengajar The Enfiniti Academy juga akan dikendalikan oleh mereka yang cukup berpengalaman dalam bidang seni persembahan dari Australia dan Singapura.

    Bakal beroperasi di sebuah lot perniagaan setinggi empat setengah tingkat yang terletak di The Strand, Kota Damansara, untuk pengambilan pertama, Tiara menjelaskan, dia hanya akan mengambil 20 orang pelajar sahaja.

    "Sebagai permulaan, biarlah bilangan pelajarnya sedikit agar tenaga pengajar mudah memberikan tumpuan dan fokus kepada pelajar.

    "Jika ada rezeki dan akademi ini mendapat sambutan hangat serta permintaan ramai, Insya Allah, kami akan menambahkan lagi pengambilan pelajar," ujar Tiara tentang akademi yang menawarkan pengkhususan di dalam bidang Diploma Muzikal Teater selama dua tahun itu lagi.

    Melihatkan perancangan terhadap akademi pertamanya itu, sudah pasti ia akan membabitkan pelaburan yang besar sekali gus menawarkan yuran yang bukan murah harganya.

    Sambil tersenyum menampakkan barisan gigi putihnya itu, apa yang dilakukannya adalah semata-mata untuk menghasilkan pelajar yang berkualiti sebaik sahaja tamat pengajian selama dua tahun.

    Di lokasi yang sama, Tiara turut memberitahu, dia akan membuka cawangan kedua Borneo Rainforest sama waktu dengan pembukaan akademi itu nanti.

    Bukan sekadar mahu menumpukan perhatian kepada akademinya sahaja, tetapi Tiara juga akan kembali bergiat aktif sebagai penerbit drama televisyen.

    Mungkin ramai yang terlupa, Tiara memiliki sebuah syarikat produksi 10 On 10 Pictures yang ditubuhkannya bersama Allahyarham Hani Mohsin Hanafi.

    Menerusi syarikatnya itu, mereka pernah menerbitkan drama-drama yang cukup berkualiti dan menjadi ikutan ramai terutama Spanar Jaya.

    Jelas Tiara, tahun 2010 juga akan menyaksikan kemunculan semula Spanar Jaya dengan diberi nafas baru dan masih mengekalkan pelakon lama serta baru selain drama-drama baru.

    Enggan mendedahkan siapakah pelakon lama dan baru yang akan menerajui sitkom kegemaran ramai itu, Tiara hanya mampu mengatakan ia akan memberikan kepuasan kepada peminat setia rancangan itu selain mengumpul peminat baru.

    Spanar Jaya yang pernah ditayangkan di saluran ntv7 satu ketika dulu menampilkan pelakon-pelakon hebat seperti Zaibo, Wardina, Ahmad Idham, Opie Zami, mendiang Rambo Chin, Ramasundram, Radhi Khalid, Bob Azrai dan ramai lagi.

    Selain itu juga, Tiara dengan penuh teruja memberitahu, rancangan Kit Kat Club Show akan diwujudkan kembali tetapi bukan di televisyen seperti mana yang pernah ditayangkan satu ketika dulu.

    Sebaliknya, kali ini ia akan dipersembahkan di pentas-pentas kecil dengan persembahan ala-ala kabaret.

    "Apa yang pasti, bukan saya yang akan menerajui rancangan itu tetapi orang lain. Cukuplah saya hanya sekadar memerhati dari belakang tabir sahaja," katanya sambil ketawa dan memberitahu Kit Kat Club Show akan dikendalikan oleh sebuah lagi syarikatnya, Kit Kat Club Events.

    Cuma kata Tiara, dia hanya akan terlibat dalam persembahan kecil yang diberi nama Mini Jukebox Musical bersama-sama Stephen Rahman, Zahim dan barisan pelakon lain yang pernah membintangi Puteri Gunung Ledang the Musical (PGLM) dan P. Ramlee the Musical (PRM).

    Bukan untuk sebuah persembahan berskala besar, tetapi kata Tiara, persembahan ini adalah untuk memenuhi permintaan syarikat korporat dan persembahan makan malam.

    Dikendalikan oleh Kit Kat Club Entertainment, persembahan ini akan menampilkan lagu-lagu popular teater muzikal antarabangsa serta PGLM dan PRM.

    Mungkin ramai yang tidak tahu, Tiara menerusi syarikatnya Enfiniti Productions dengan kerjasama Astro Entertainment kini menguruskan kerjaya seni juara, naib juara dan pemenang tempat ketiga AF7 iaitu Hafiz, Aril dan Akim sejak 17 September lalu.

    Kerjasama yang pertama kali diadakan itu akan menentukan hala tuju serta merancang dan merencana seni ketiga-tiga artis tersebut di dalam industri.

    Malah, ia juga melibatkan penjenamaan, pemasaran serta pelan kerjaya mereka untuk dua hingga tiga tahun akan datang.

    Ia termasuklah teknik tarian, seni persembahan pentas, lakonan, tata gaya, vokal serta perancangan album, teater, filem dan banyak lagi yang mampu mengukuhkan lagi kedudukan mereka.

    Bukan sekadar dalam bidang seni sahaja, Tiara juga menjelaskan, Hafiz, Aril dan Akim juga didedahkan dengan selok-belok dunia perniagaan terutama aspek pengurusan.

    "Saya mahu mereka belajar dan tahu sendiri bahawa bisnes seni ini bukanlah satu perkara yang mudah dan apa yang saya harapkan agar mereka dapat buka mata serta minda bahawa betapa pentingnya perancangan dalam setiap gerak geri kita.

    "Selepas dua bulan, saya berpuas hati dengan prestasi mereka dan bukan berpuas hati sepenuhnya kerana mereka mempunyai masa yang lama dan panjang untuk mengekalkan kedudukan mereka," kata Pelakon Wanita Terbaik Festival Filem Asia Pasifik Ke-50 menerusi filem PGL ini penuh optimis saat membicarakan tentang karier Hafiz, Aril dan Akim.

    Menyentuh tentang PGL yang dijadikan siri mini untuk slot Suatu Ketika di Astro Citra itu, Tiara merasakan sudah tiba masanya untuk dia mengembalikan semula magis filem termahal itu ke layar kaca.

    Apatah lagi, filem epik yang sudah jauh berkelana itu juga menyambut ulang tahun kelimanya tahun ini sejak mula ditayangkan di pawagam pada tahun 2004.

    Ditayangkan bermula hari ini (2 Disember), ia dibahagikan kepada empat bahagian setiap minggu dan menariknya, filem arahan Saw Teong Hin itu turut menyelitkan lebih kurang lima adegan yang belum pernah ditayangkan di mana-mana sebelum ini termasuk filemnya.

    Ini termasuklah adegan sewaktu Tun Teja (lakonan Sofia Jane) dilarikan Hang Tuah (M. Nasir) serta pertemuan dramatik antara Hang Tuah dan Hang Jebat (Shaharudin Thamby).

    "Apabila Astro Citra datang kepada saya mengusulkan perkara ini, saya fikir apa salahnya untuk saya menayangkan kembali PGL kepada masyarakat. Kata orang untuk menyegarkan ingatan.

    "Untuk itu, kami menggunakan khidmat penyunting filem asal PGL iaitu Kate James untuk memasukkan adegan-adegan ini ke dalam filem asal sebelum disunting dan dibahagikan kepada empat siri," katanya yang pernah dinobatkan sebagai Pelakon Wanita Terbaik Festival Filem Malaysia Ke-12 menerusi filem Ringgit Kasorrga ini lagi.

    Tiara juga memuji memuji usaha Astro yang menyediakan platform untuk karyawan seni tempatan menonjolkan kreativiti masing-masing menerusi slot Suatu Ketika.

    Malah, dia juga memasang impian untuk menerbitkan satu siri mini untuk slot berkenaan seandainya diberi peluang oleh pihak Astro.

    Jauh di sudut hati Tiara, selepas lima tahun mengabadikan diri dengan PGL, dia tetap mahu menerbitkan sebuah filem dari genre epik.

    Saturday, 7 November 2009

    TJ's FACP Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Arts

    22 April 2009


    Dear Datin,

    Re : Confirmation of the FACP Malaysia Award in Shangri-La Hotel Kuala Lumpur on 6 Nov. 2009

    I am very pleased to inform you that you have been nominated to be the winner of the the FACP Malaysia Outstanding Contribution to the Arts.

    I am writing to you on behalf of The Federation for Asian Cultural Promotion (FACP) with regard to this year’s annual conference which will be held in Kuala Lumpur from 5th to 8th November, 2009.

    FACP was founded 30 years ago for the promotion of the arts and culture. For the past 26 years it has been holding a conference each year, which has proved to be a valuable platform for impresarios, artistes, promoters and all those in the performing arts to network in furtherance of their mutual interests and benefits.

    The annual conferences were held in Asian cities until 1996 when it was held in Melbourne, the first time outside Asia. Since then the conference has attracted interest not only from Asian countries and Australia but also from Europe, America and Canada, resulting in its development into a popular international forum for the arts and culture.

    Malaysia is honoured to be hosting this year’s conference and in order to make this as impressive as previous conferences held in other countries and befitting an event of international stature, we are organizing an Awards Night in honour of outstanding Malaysians who have contributed to the arts locally and internationally.

    It is with great Honour and privilege that I am writing to you as one of the Governors of the Federation For Asian Cultural Promotion

    ( ). This organization was founded in 1979 with members initially from various cities in Asia but gradually has included members from Australia, Europe and the USA. Its main mission is to support and promote collaboration and networking among people involved in the performing arts, like impresarios and artistes for the purpose of encouraging the creation, management and presentation of the performing arts in an international context.

    FACP is managed by a Board of Governors consisting of 25 members from various countries. The present Chairman is from Taipei. Presently, Malaysia is represented by 2 governors, myself and Pamela Ong, the President of the Penang Arts Council. In furtherance of its mission FACP holds an international conference each year in a different city. The conference which is open to the public usually features distinguished keynote speakers on major topics followed by dialog and discussions. At night there will be dinners and entertainment where members will have the chance to showcase their performances. The last conference (2008) was held in Joenju, Korea and the one before that, (2007) in Kaoshiung, Taiwan.

    For this forthcoming conference the main social event is on Friday 6th November called “The Awards Night”. For this function, FACP Malaysia has agreed to present awards to 7 persons recommended by the host country in recognition of their role in the promotion of the arts . In this respect, we have recommended for the award of Life Time Achievement in Dance ’’ for Mr. RAMLI IBRAHIM, Patron of the ARTS AWARD to TAN SRI KONISHI, Outstanding young composer in Chinese Pop Music - Yi Jie Qi, Outstanding Cultural Promotion Award to the Hai-O Foundation , Mr. Tan Kai Hee , Outstanding Female Vocalist Award - Dato’ Hajjah Sheila Majid and you as the recipient of the Outstanding Contribution to the Arts.

    We have invited the PM, the Culture Minister, Dato Seri Rais Yatim to attend the function. We hope they will attend the Awards Night Dinner since some government cultural officials from other countries will be attending.

    The Chinese Government has agreed to send their top artistes and also the Xin Jiang Song and Dance Troupe to perform during the FACP conference. We'd like to also showcase the talents of our Honorees such as the Sutra Dancers during the FACP conference to our distinguished delegates and members of the media especially on the 6 November , Awards Night, Dinner and show. A highlight performance of not more than 10 minutes would be ideal. But, this is NOT compulsory.

    We are very happy to extend 2 complimentary seats to you and your loved ones. Should you require more seat at the Awards Night Dinner, we can provide at RM 200 per person inclusive of an 8 course Chinese Dinner. If you require any further information regarding FACP or the Award, please do not hesitate to contact me. I look forward to receiving your favourable reply.

    Thank you and My Heartiest Congratulations to you !

    Yours Sincerely,

    Kok Kee Boon

    Organising Committee

    Governor for FACP

    Outstanding Young Malaysian Award (Cultural Achievement)

    Thursday, 22 October 2009

    Liza Minelli, who inspired the birth of the Kit Kat Klub

    You cannot possibly know how I feel tonight. Not unless you, like me, know Liza Minelli, grew up watching her in films like “Cabaret” and memorized all her songs and moves.

    I probably never got to talk about this in any interview, but the truth is, Liza was a living legend to me, as a kid growing up in a family of party performers, a kid dreaming of hitting the big lights someday. I knew songs like New York, New York, Hey Big Spender and Cabaret from singing along with my very vivacious aunts and uncles at our many Eu family gatherings. People in our family would get up and sing at the drop of a hat, nobody needed any coaxing or cajoling, in fact you could never tear Uncle Ralph or Auntie Cath away from the microphone, same thing goes for cousin Julie and Uncle Les. And all the Eu children and grandchildren grew up singing Goodnight Irene, Danny Boy, Autumn Leaves, Speedy Gonzales and every single Elvis song on the planet. My uncle Ralph WAS the Malaysian Elvis Presley, for goodness sakes.
    Aaaaanyway. Fast forward to early 1990s when I was first struck by Minelli magic in a video of the film Cabaret. I was so mesmerized by Liza’s captivating energy and the way she would draw an audience in with her animatics and her emotion, I watched the film over and over again, maybe 100 times.

    I fantasized about someday playing the role of Sally Bowles and performing wit the same kind of zest and confidence, commanding an audience, making them laugh and cry.
    I called Pat Ibrahim one day, and told him I wanted to put on a show, a revue, like the show in the film Cabaret. I even named the show The Kit Kat Klub show, inspired by the name of the club the girls sang and danced at, in the film.
    We got some of our best looking talent in our book Jacquie Eu Productions, showed them the video of Cabaret, and asked them who was game. Nasha Aziz, Maria Faridah, Sofia Jane, Shada Hamid, Aida Rahim, Yvonne Gabriel were amongst the first to sign on. Gruelling rehearsals followed, and the Kit Kat Klub Show was born.

    The Kit Kat Klub Show was the most well-known stage act in KL, performing at annual dinners, the top clubs, product launches and we even landed a 6 month contract performing nightly at Copperfields’ at the Pan Pacific.

    The Copperfields’ show was where the show evolved into more of a song, dance and comedy revue, with the inclusion of a stand-up comic/show host and a guest singer or 2, sometimes even a magician, besides the dancers who were also part of the comic skits.

    That was our very first taste of stage management and stage production. It’s been a series of ups and downs along the way, getting conned sometimes by unscrupulous partners, not getting paid for performing, shady agents who disappear after an event, but we also made a name for ourselves on TV, being TV3’s favourite feature act for the Juara Lagu and Sinaran finals year after year.

    Anyway. We’ve come a long way since then, and the journey has mostly been a fun and adventurous one. The point of this long story as to share with everyone, how IT ALL BEGAN WITH LIZA. That’s Liza with a Z, of course.

    Sunday, 18 October 2009

    99 things you must do (before you get OLD!) - from my girlfriend Noren

    My girlfriend Norenshah Sahari sent me this on my Facebook. I think it's a wonderful thing to have to think about and find time to do. Makes life much more interesting and colorful.

    I've finally found the time to go through the list and highlight the things I've done.

    1. Started your own blog
    2. Slept under the stars
    3. Played in a band
    4. Visited Hawaii and danced on a lava cliff with the roar of the Pacific below.
    5. Watched a meteor shower
    6. Given more than you can afford to charity
    7. Been to Disneyland
    8. Climbed a mountain - Gunung Ledang!
    9. Held a praying mantis
    10. Sang a solo
    11. Bungee jumped
    12. Visited Paris
    13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
    14. Taught yourself an art from scratch - Javanese Classical Dance
    15. Adopted a child
    16. Had food poisoning
    17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
    18. Grown your own vegetables
    19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
    20. Slept on an overnight train
    21. Had a pillow fight
    22. Hitch hiked
    23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill to avoid taking the kids to school
    24. Built a snow fort
    25. Held a lamb well, i fed one once
    26. Gone skinny dipping
    27. Run a Marathon
    28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
    29. Seen a total eclipse in a bucket of water when i was really small, also Halley's comet!
    30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
    31. Hit a home run in softball and rounders, NOt baseball :(
    32. Been on a cruise
    33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
    34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
    35. Seen an Amish community
    36. Taught yourself a new language I was halfway thru Italian before I forgot it
    37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied when I was working hardest for it, ironically
    38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
    39. Gone rock climbing
    40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
    41. Sung karaoke
    42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
    43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
    44. Visited Africa
    45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
    46. Been transported in an ambulance
    47. Had your portrait painted
    48. Gone deep sea fishing
    49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
    50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
    51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
    52. Kissed in the rain
    53. Played in the mud
    54. Gone to a drive-in theater
    55. Been in a movie
    56. Visited the Great Wall of China
    57. Started a business
    58. Taken a martial arts class
    59. Visited Russia
    60. Served at a soup kitchen
    61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
    62. Gone whale watching
    63. Got flowers for no reason
    64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
    65. Gone sky diving
    66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
    67. Bounced a check
    68. Flown in a helicopter
    69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
    70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
    71. Eaten Caviar
    72. Pieced a quilt
    73. Stood in Times Square
    74. Toured the Everglades
    75. Been fired from a job
    76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
    77. Broken a bone
    78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
    79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
    80. Published a book
    81. Visited the Vatican
    82. Bought a brand new car
    83. Walked in Jerusalem
    84. Had your picture in the newspaper
    85. Kissed a stranger at midnight on New Year's Eve
    86. Visited the White House
    87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
    88. Had chickenpox
    89. Saved someone’s life
    90. Sat on a jury
    91. Met someone famous outside of Malaysia?
    92. Joined a book club
    93. Lost a loved one
    94. Had a baby
    95. Seen the Alamo in person
    96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
    97. Been involved in a law suit
    98. Owned a cell phone
    99. Been stung by a bee

    Enfiniti welcomes our new GM Izan Satrina onboard!

    Hi all, it's been a while, I know. Life's been a roller-coaster for the past few months. Signed a joint management agreement with Astro to manage the top 3 winners of Akademi Fantasia 7 (Hafiz, Aril and Akim), gave a Townhall address to the Enfiniti Heads of Department after mapping out our next 2 year plans, gave a motivational talk at the National Women's Convention, yes, its been most eventful to say the least.

    I guess it's true that when it rains it will pour. We had been waiting on several things to fall in place for a long time, and it's all falling into place at the same time, which is great, I'm not complaining. You just might not be hearing from me as often once things start moving too fast.

    Best thing to happen for Enfiniti is our new General Manager, Izan Satrina, who joins us tomorrow. Izan joined Ten On Ten Pictures 12 years ago doing marketing for events and TV, went off to work in advertising, marketing, branding and tourism, and has come back to the group, 12 years richer in experience. Before joining Enfiniti, Izan was working for the Singapore Tourism Board.

    Welcome aboard, Izan!

    Tuesday, 6 October 2009


    My fellow Hokkien Lang, Joe Lee wrote this piece for the Malay Mail. Thanks for the support, Joe...

    Joe Lee
    Monday, October 5th, 2009 05:12:00

    IT’S been on the cards for ages, but the recent official announcement that Enfiniti Productions Sdn Bhd would co-manage the careers of the top three winners of Akademi Fantasia 7 was the confirmation sought by many.

    With that, the principal of the seventh season of Akademi Fantasia and also the managing director of Enfiniti, Datin Seri Tiara Jacquelina, now has a hand in planning the careers of Mohd Hafiz Mohd Suip, Khairil Azam Pilus and Afiq Hakim Ahmad to aid Astro Entertainment Sdn Bhd (AESB) after the demise of Maestro Talent & Management.

    Upon announcement of the joint management, speculation that the trio will be sidetracked and shaped more as talents for TV and film — with their original aim of becoming singers waylaid — were dismissed by the woman behind Puteri Gunung Ledang and P. Ramlee musical theater productions.

    “We’re molding them into becoming all-round stars, and teach them the necessary skills,” said Tiara. While her foray into the music industry can be set as fledgling at best, Tiara’s forte in film, TV and theater productions, apart from her talent management abilities are spoken for, if her past achievements are testimony to her sheer tenacity at making it in the business.

    Tiara said the talents of the three boys held much promise for their future to become stars and she excitedly added that discussions have been held to map out the career path of the trio in various aspects, including their
    branding and direction over the next couple of years.

    “Among immediate plans were the extension of polishing their skills from Akademi Fantasia which covers dance, stage performance, acting, styling and vocals, among others.

    “Projects planned include TV programmes, albums, music videos, tours and corporate performances, apart
    from potential fi lm and stage work.”

    Performing workshops, personalised gym training and grooming sessions are already on the cards and the boys can expect to better their acting and performing skills in her company’s annual actors’ boot camp, conducted by stage actor Stephen Rahman-Hughes, choreographer Pat Ibrahim and Tiara herself.

    Meanwhile, she also spoke of a detailed career road map and a fresher approach for staying power.20 years, in acting as well as talent management from the days of Jacquie Eu Productions and Kit Kat Klub Entertainment to now Enfiniti Productions Sdn Bhd, the immediate plus in the partnership is the utilisation of the network of manpower and creative resources held by Enfiniti’s sister outfits.

    Kit Kat Klub Entertainment, which handles event management, will take on their promotions, while production arm, Ten On Ten Pictures Sdn Bhd, has earmarked several television series to feature the talents.

    Wednesday, 23 September 2009

    Enfiniti and Astro to jointly manage Hafiz, Aril & Akim

    Last Thursday, my company Enfiniti Productions and Astro Entertainment Sdn Bhd co-hosted a press conference to announce the joint management of the top 3 winners of Akademi Fantasia 7, Hafiz, Aril and Akim. This is the press release statement as well as the speech I gave at the PC.

    Untuk Siaran Berita


    Petaling Jaya, 17 September 2009: Astro Entertainment Sdn Bhd (AESB) dan Enfiniti Productions Sdn Bhd (Enfiniti) hari ini mengumumkan pengurusan bersama 3 finalis Akademi Fantasia musim ke 7 (AF7), Hafiz, Aril dan Akim di dalam satu sidang media bertempat di restoran Borneo Rainforest Sunway.

    Melalui pengurusan bersama ini, pihak AESB dan Enfiniti bakal berkerjasama di dalam mengurus dan mempromosikan 3 artis tersebut melalui semua saluran media. AESB dan Enfiniti amat yakin dengan bakat besar yang ada pada 3 artis muda ini dan akan bergabung tenaga mengatur kerjaya mereka.

    Menurut Pengarah Eksekutif AESB, Zainir Aminullah,

    Ketiga-tiga artis ini memerlukan pelan pemasaran yang rapi dan menyeluruh.

    “Perhatian bukan sahaja diberikan kepada bidang nyanyian, lakonan dan pengacaraan juga dikenal pasti mampu mengukuhkan lagi kerjaya mereka.

    ”AESB turut aktif menembusi pasaran syarikat-syarikat korporat untuk memasarkan artis-artis ini sebagai duta produk. Justeru itu, penjenamaan atau ’branding’ memainkan peranan penting bagi artis bersaing secara sihat merebut peluang komersial dari pihak korporat”, terang Zainir.

    Beliau menambah AESB amat terbuka dalam menjalinkan kerjasama dengan pelbagai pihak demi kemajuan karier artis.

    ”Enfiniti Productions merupakan sebuah agensi yang dikenal pasti dapat membantu AESB melaksanakan perancangan ini. Di bawah penyeliaan Yang Berbahagia Datin Seri Tiara Jacquelina, Enfiniti dilantik secara rasminya sebagai pengurus bersama dari aspek pengurusan jenama, perhubungan awam dan aktiviti-aktiviti komersial.

    Datin Sri Tiara pula berkata, pihak Enfiniti dan AESB telah pun mengadakan beberapa sesi perbincangan antara lain penjenamaan (branding), pemasaran dan pelan kerjaya 2 hingga 3 tahun untuk Hafiz, Aril dan Akim.

    Antara perancangan Enfiniti yang utama adalah lanjutan skil yang diajar sewaktu di Akademi Fantasia tempohari, antaranya segi teknik tarian, seni persembahan pentas, lakonan, tatagaya (styling), vokal dan sebagainya. Perancangan juga sedang diatur untuk beberapa projek, antaranya rancangan untuk TV,album, klip video, konsert jelajah dan persembahan untuk majlis koprat. Ada juga kemungkinan perancangan untuk projek filem dan teater. Sebahagian dari projek-projek ini bakal dikelolakan secara usahasama diantara Enfiniti bersama AESB, disamping kerjasama dengan stesen TV yang lain.

    “Industri hiburan hari ini penuh dengan cabaran-cabaran baru. Artis perlu ada perancangan karir yang terperinci (detailed career road map), dan pendekatan (approach) yang lebih segar supaya menonjol. Hafiz, Aril dan Akim akan dipakej dengan imej dan “branding” yang jelas, disamping rancangan pemasaran dan promosi mereka tersendiri.

    Jelas Tiara lagi, “Saya amat teruja untuk membentuk Hafiz, Aril dan Akim pergi lebih jauh kerana saya percaya dengan bakat murni yang mereka ada. Saya kenal mereka, dan yakin mereka bertiga sanggup bekerja keras.

    Pihak Enfiniti telah pun berkongsi dengan mereka perancangan kerjaya (career plan) yang kami telah atur bersama pihak AESB. Saya sangat berbesar hati atas sokongan padu dan kepercayaan yang diberikan oleh Encik Zainir Aminullah dan pengurusan AESB sejak dari awal perbincangan dalam merealisasikan usahasama ini.”

    “Saya bermula di dalam bidang seni lebih 20 tahun yang lalu, bukan sebagai pelakon tetapi sebagai pengurus bakat, melalui syarikat saya Jacquie Eu Productions dan Kit Kat Klub Entertainment. Enfiniti Productions Sdn Bhd ingin dikenali dengan penerbitan produk berkualiti dalam bidang filem dan teater.

    Syarikat-syarikat bersekutu kami iaitu syarikat pengurusan bakat D Casting Sdn Bhd, syarikat event management Kit Kat Klub Entertainment dn Bhd, production house rancangan TV Ten On Ten Pictures Sdn Bhd dan juga projek terbaru kami iaitu Enfiniti Akademi merupakan “network” kami sendiri.

    “Justeru itu, segala pengalaman, sumber tenaga dan kreatif syarikat-syarikat ini secara bersekutu akan dimanfaatkan untuk menyokong projek pengurusan bersama Hafiz, Aril dan Akim ini. Saya melihat ini juga sebagai satu kesinambungan kepada penglibatan saya sebagai “principal” mereka!”


    Tiara's speech:

    "Nampaknya pengalaman saya bersama AF musim ketujuh sebagai Principal membawa kesan yang begitu berpanjangan pada saya, sehingga syarikat saya tergerak mengusulkan proposal pengurusan bersama ini, dengan Astro Entertainment Sdn Bhd!

    Sehingga sekarang, kami telah pun mengadakan beberapa sesi perbincangan terperinci antara lain tentang penjenamaan (branding), pemasaran dan pelan kerjaya 2 hingga 3 tahun untuk Hafiz, Aril dan Akim.

    Antara perancangan Enfiniti yang utama adalah lanjutan skil yang diajar sewaktu di Akademi Fantasia tempohari, antaranya segi teknik tarian, seni persembahan pentas, lakonan, tatagaya (styling), vokal dan sebagainya. Perancangan juga sedang diatur untuk beberapa projek, antaranya rancangan untuk TV,album, klip video, konsert jelajah dan persembahan untuk majlis koprat. Ada juga kemungkinan perancangan untuk projek filem dan teater. Sebahagian dari projek-projek ini bakal dikelolakan secara usahasama diantara Enfiniti bersama AESB, disamping kerjasama dengan stesen TV yang lain.

    Industri hiburan hari ini penuh dengan cabaran-cabaran baru. Artis perlu ada perancangan karir yang terperinci (detailed career road map), dan pendekatan (approach) yang lebih segar supaya menonjol dan yang lebih penting, supaya kekal dalam industri ini.

    Hafiz, Aril dan Akim akan dipakej dengan imej dan “branding” yang jelas, disamping rancangan pemasaran dan promosi mereka tersendiri.

    Saya amat teruja untuk membimbing Hafiz, Aril dan Akim untuk pergi sejauh mungkin, kerana saya percaya dengan bakat murni yang ada pada mereka. Saya kenal mereka, dan yakin mereka bertiga sanggup bekerja keras supaya berjaya.

    Pihak Enfiniti telah pun berkongsi dengan mereka perancangan kerjaya (career plan) yang kami telah atur bersama pihak AESB. Saya sangat berbesar hati atas sokongan padu dan kepercayaan yang diberikan oleh Encik Zainir Aminullah dan pengurusan AESB sejak dari awal perbincangan dalam merealisasikan usahasama ini.”

    Sekadar berkongsi dengan anda semua, saya sebenarnya bermula di dalam bidang seni lebih 20 tahun yang lalu, bukan sebagai pelakon tetapi sebagai pengurus bakat, melalui syarikat saya Jacquie Eu Productions dan Kit Kat Klub Entertainment. Jadi bidang pengurusan bakat ini sangatlah dekat di hati saya. Saya suka dengan proses menilik dan mengasah bakat-bakat baru.

    Kini, Enfiniti Productions Sdn Bhd ingin dikenali dengan penerbitan produk berkualiti dalam bidang filem dan teater. Syarikat-syarikat bersekutu kami iaitu ajensi pengurusan bakat D Casting Sdn Bhd, syarikat event management Kit Kat Klub Entertainment dn Bhd, production house rancangan TV Ten On Ten Pictures Sdn Bhd dan juga projek terbaru kami iaitu Enfiniti Akademi merupakan “network” kami sendiri.

    “Justeru itu, segala pengalaman, sumber tenaga dan kreatif syarikat-syarikat ini secara bersekutu akan dimanfaatkan untuk menyokong projek pengurusan bersama Hafiz, Aril dan Akim ini. Saya melihat ini juga sebagai satu kesinambungan kepada penglibatan saya sebagai “principal” mereka!”

    Sunday, 9 August 2009

    Mercy’s angel spreads her wings-farewell Dr. Jemilah

    Do you ever get that feeling sometimes when you want to hold on to something even though you know you should really let it go, because it needs to be let go in order to continue to grow, continue to fly? I'm feeling like that, upon receiving an SMS from her in Geneva telling me the good news of her appointment to the UN, to be posted to New York.

    The selfish me wants to just talk her out of it, because I will lose one of my personal heroes and a mentor I have always looked up to, because of her bravery and passion in whatever she does. That the country will have lost a gem of an icon and an outstanding Malaysian who more than lives and breathes the term "towering Malaysian" is second to my selfishness.

    The faithful, adoring niece in me, however, knows that her place lies way beyond our shores, that she was meant for much greater things. That she should really be in a place where her talent, passion and expertise will be much more appreciated.

    It breaks my heart to see our country continuously losing all our best people. I guess it is true that we never know what we have until we lose it. I hope we learn from this and just like it was in the case of Michael Jackson and Yasmin Ahmad, also learn to acknowledge talent and help talent to grow and flourish DURING a person's lifetime. All the tears and the tributes in the world once you've lost them won't mean a thing.

    Aunt Jim, you will always be my hero, my angel, my Mother Theresa, you've even been even my Florence Nightingale on many occasions. It is with a heavy heart that your loving niece lets go, but I wish you all the success you deserve and every time I look up to the skies, I will know in my heart that you have taken that golden flight, that journey, the next step.

    Farewell, Angel. Love you with all my heart. ;.-(

    The Star Online

    Sunday August 9, 2009

    Mercy’s angel spreads her wings


    EVEN before Mercy Malaysia, Dr Jemilah Mahmood was always passionate about giving back to society.

    “Whenever people came to her for money for this cause or that, she was always digging into her purse. She would give out RM50, RM100, RM200 until she had no money left.

    “She’s that kind of person, always wanting to do something for others,” says her close friend Farah Hamzah, who describes Dr Jemilah as “very intense” and very attached to the issues that she pursues.

    “If she believes in something, she is relentless. And she ups the ante all the time,” adds Farah.

    Dr Jemilah: ‘I love Mercy too much and I didn’t want it to be Dr Jemilah. It has to be more than that. I want it to sustain itself and outlive me.’

    And Malaysians are seeing that side of Dr Jemilah.

    She gave “birth” to Mercy Malaysia 10 years ago, and along with a team of able doctors, nurses and ever-ready volunteers nurtured the organisation into what it is today – a respected world-class relief organisation.

    Whenever a crisis struck the region – be it a tsunami, earthquake, a cyclone, war or military conflict – Mercy Malaysia jumped on board the first plane and headed out to help the victims.

    In countries like Myanmar, Sudan, Sri Lanka and North Korea, where a number of international aid organisations are perceived to have an agenda and are not welcomed even during times of humanitarian crisis, Mercy Malaysia got in – at times before everyone else and in some places, like Sri Lanka, with unlimited access to the afflicted areas.

    And now Dr Jemilah is upping the ante again by leaving Mercy and heading off to New York to take on a position as Chief of the Humanitarian Response branch for the United Nations Populations Fund (UNFPA).

    Succession plan

    Some, like her good friend Farah who is an appointed Mercy Malaysia exco member, believes that Dr Jemilah has simply outgrown Mercy.

    Dr Jemilah herself discloses that the Mercy succession plan has been in the pipeline for at least five years because she knew from the start that she was going to leave her “baby” after 10 years.

    “I knew if I stayed longer, I might put the organisation at risk in the sense that you have this ‘founder syndrome’.

    “The founder feels they own the organisation and people cannot differentiate the founder from the organisation, and Mercy Malaysia gets drowned somewhere in between.

    “I love Mercy too much and I didn’t want it to be Dr Jemilah. It has to be more than that. I want it to sustain itself and outlive me,” she says.

    And it is precisely Mercy Malaysia’s achievements on the international front that have made it so easy for Dr Jemilah to walk away.

    The turning point came last year.

    Dr Jemilah was in Geneva waiting for a friend to pick her up near the Broken Chair monument on Place des Nations. A group of Sudanese women were gathered around there after a meeting and one of them came up to ask if she was from Malaysia – probably guessing from the way she tied her headscarf.

    When Dr Jemilah replied that she was, to her surprise the woman then asked if she knew Mercy Malaysia.

    “I froze. I said ‘yes. Why?’ She said ‘I am from El Geneina in West Darfur and now we don’t have to be afraid to give birth because Mercy Malaysia has built a reproductive health centre. They also trained our midwives and doctors so no one has to die in childbirth.”

    Dr Jemilah was doubly shocked when the woman then asked if she knew Mercy’s Dr Jemilah.

    “I panicked because I was wondering how I was going to answer that. And the woman fished out her call card and she was from a Sudanese local organisation so I fished out mine.

    “When she saw my card, she couldn’t believe it. There was an uproar and she started screaming in Arabic and a lot of people started crowding around me,” she says.

    At this point, Dr Jemilah was “rescued” by her friend who was honking from the car. So Dr Jemilah excused herself and got in.

    “Gosh, would you imagine in your life that you get someone who doesn’t know you from Adam and is one of your beneficiaries who comes up and tells you a story about the impact of your work?” she ponders, still pretty much in awe of the experience.

    Then two months later, Dr Jemilah was at a conference in Bangkok when a man came up to her and asked if she remembered him. She didn’t, but it turned out that he was a colonel from Pakistan who was now the defence attache in Bangkok. He remembered her from the 2005 Pakistan earthquake and told her how much he appreciated Mercy Malaysia’s volunteers working through the cold of winter in the mountains of Bagh to provide health care for the victims.

    “He asked me if I knew what happened when I left. I said ‘no’. He said when Mercy left, the people took a piece of rubble from their homes and built a monument. And he said your organisation’s name is on it!

    “At that point I said to myself ‘why am I hanging on?’ Leave when you know you have done your job and have people to carry on and groom them to succeed.

    “A succession plan is only successful if you will let go,” she says.

    And let go she did, handing over the mantle to Dr Ahmad Faizal Mohd Perdaus.

    Why him?

    Dr Jemilah says Dr Faizal is a good speaker and excellent communicator and has been vice-president for two terms.

    “He’s very smart. I’ve known him for many years. He was my student. He’s a doctor and has been on missions so he has had the experience. He is a mix of all this. He’s ideal,” she says.

    She says she told Dr Faisal not to ever try to walk in her shoes but to chart his own course.

    “I foresee Mercy becoming a better organisation when I depart because, as it is, Mercy is a very emotive organisation. It is full of emotion and passion and I am, by nature, like that. I believe when I am not there, it becomes more calm, very strong and solid and nothing can shake it after that. I am very optimistic. I have great faith in the people I am leaving behind.”

    So she advised Dr Faisal not to be afraid to make his own mistakes and learn from them as he steers Mercy in a new direction.

    “I said you can change the process, hardware, software, structure, logo and anything else but just don’t ever change the values and principles the organisation is built on, which is a platform for people to do good and putting Malaysia on the world map to show that we can do things differently and better.”

    Dr Jemilah has also told the team not to feel any pressure that she is going to watch and feel disappointed with them.

    “I won’t because I understand what transition is all about. In any organisation, when there is a transition there is a slight dip and then it comes back. They should expect that.”

    Softie at heart

    While she might look like a tough cookie, Dr Jemilah admits that she cries all the time when she comes across painful situations and that even watching a video of the situation brings her to tears.

    But this only makes her stronger.

    “If you can’t cry, you can’t feel that it is so painful to watch and see. I cry and say to myself ‘No point crying. You gotta do something about it.’ I am not tough. I am a real softie but pushed to a corner I can be quite a tiger,” she admits.

    On her new UN job, Dr Jemilah says it would include planning, monitoring and administering the UNFPA’s emergency response fund in its work in conflict, post conflict and natural disaster situations as well as prepare for present and future threats, among other things.

    Dr Jemilah who is a gynaecologist says the work would also focus on reproductive and gender issues during humanitarian crises, adding that “even in war and conflict there are women who want to give birth.”

    In the last 10 years, she says, she has witnessed “too much pain” of women having been sexually abused or having no access to healthcare sometimes because of difficult circumstances, like in Afghanistan where people basically hide their women.

    So she is excited about the prospect of “this woman in a tudung going to a difficult Muslim country and challenging the system and all these men.”

    Naive maybe, but Dr Jemilah is among those who are “terribly optimistic” that global peace and development are achieveable and what it needs are agents of change in the world to bring about the shift.

    “I want to be a change agent. Maybe I am born for that. I want to shake things up and move things and push. I never say die and I never say no. If we have a defeatist attitude, we’ll never achieve anything,” she says.

    Dr Jemilah says she is lucky that her husband, Dr Ashar Abdullah, is her number one fan.

    “He really feels that I can shake and change the world. He pushes me all the time and says ‘Go. You can go for that. That’s too small for you. You can go higher and do more good.”

    Stressing that she is just a normal person who is “just very, very steadfast”, Dr Jemilah says the humanitarian cause is something that really drives her.

    “I just feel right now that I can do more. Mercy can do only so much but Jemilah can do more. I want to use whatever strength and whatever talent I have globally.

    “Whether I succeed or not is a different matter but I want to continue to try to change the world and not give up.”

    Friday, 7 August 2009

    to dance with abandonment... and live as though heaven is on earth.

    Ok, today's entry may sound rather random, but yeah...feeling a bit random right now sitting in front of the ol' iMac looking for inspiration to write a Merdeka piece for The Star.

    I found this really inspiring quote from Michael Jackson on the joy of dancing, how sacred dance was to him, and "the eternal dance of Creation". I can't tell you how it's so wonderful to completely lose yourself for a few minutes when you dance or sing or paint or just completely lose or abandon yourself completely. I experience it when I listen to classical Javanese Gending music, I find my thoughts completely leave me and I'm able to almost "detach" my body from my thoughts for a few minutes. When I put on my dancing Kain and Sampur, all I wanna do is to glide along with the music and dance for as long as the music plays, lost completely in the beautiful music. It's absolutely therapeutic, and I completely recommend it to anyone who has never experienced the liberation of self-abandonment. Sigh. Why am I feeling so...random...maybe I need to put on my dancing Kain again, been too long.

    "Dancers come and go in the twinkling of an eye but the dance lives on. On
    many an occasion, when I am dancing, I have felt touched by something sacred.
    In those moments, I felt my spirit soar and become one with everything that
    exists. I become the stars and the moon. I become the lover and the beloved. I
    become the victor and the vanquished. I become the master and the slave. I
    become the singer and the song. I become the knower and the known. I keep on
    dancing and then, it is the eternal dance of creation. The creator and the
    creation merge into one wholeness of joy. I keep on dancing until there is
    only. . .the dance."

    Michael Jackson