Archive | May, 2007

SpongeBob SquarePants Performs Musical World Premiere In S'pore

31 May

SINGAPORE: You may have seen him on television but for the first time, popular cartoon character SpongeBob SquarePants has come alive on stage.

SpongeBob on Thursday performed his musical world premiere in Singapore.

The musical combines live acting with puppetry and costumes.

SpongeBob SquarePants Live! takes audiences under-the-sea.

The musical is set in the make-believe, subterranean city of Bikini Bottom.

And SpongeBob is joined by all his friends from his TV show.

Also joining in the fun was actress Zoe Tay who was in the audience with other celebrities.

The show is in town from 31 May until 6 June at Singapore Expo Hall 3.

Tickets range from S$38 to S$68. – CNA/yy

Channel News Asia

10,000 Terpukau

30 May
RAMAI peminat naik ke atas pentas untuk menari bersama Ramlah Ram.

MEMANG meriah! Dua perkataan tepat menggambarkan Konsert Pancaindera Mingguan Malaysia yang diadakan di Bukit Merah Laketown Resort (BMLR) di Perak, malam Sabtu lalu.

Buktinya, kira-kira 10,000 penonton menyerbu kawasan lapang taman tema popular itu sejak awal petang lagi walaupun hujan lebat turun sebelum itu.

Tepat pukul 9 malam, konsert berkenaan memulakan tirai dengan persembahan pasangan hos, Roslan Shah dan Haiza menerusi himpunan lagu-lagu Allahyarham Sudirman dan gelek dangdut.

Seterusnya, acara memotong kek meraikan sambutan ulang tahun ke-10 BMLR oleh Pengurus Besar BMLR, Jasmi Osman, Pengurus Kumpulan Hotel dan Resort MK Land, Anuar Yang Ghazali bersama kakitangan BMLR serta artis-artis popular yang menjayakan konsert berkenaan.

Dan konsert yang ditunggu-tunggu akhirnya terlaksana apabila artis-artis popular tanah air antaranya Ella, Dayang Nurfaizah, Elyana, Ramlah Ram, Diana Naim, Faizal AF4, Rosma AF1, Bob AF2 dan Fiq (Mentor) membuat persembahan mereka.

Corat-coret

*Rombongan bas yang membawa artis dari Kuala Lumpur ke BMLR hanya melibatkan Fiq dan Ina Naim kerana selebihnya lebih selesa berkereta sendiri.

*Ratu rock, Ella memaklumkan dia akan sampai sekitar pukul 8 malam kerana menghadiri konvokesyen anak buahnya di UiTM, Shah Alam.

*Hujan lebat sekitar pukul 2 petang mengundang rasa bimbang kepada penganjur. Namun cuaca kembali panas dan baik sejam kemudian sehinggalah konsert berakhir.

*Sesi artis bertemu peminat pada pukul 5 petang sesak dengan orang ramai sehingga menyaksikan adegan tolak-menolak dan tidak terkawal.

*Pentas konsert menjadi bahan usikan kerana dihiasi dengan segala jenis pokok dan daun serta kelihatan seperti khemah askar. Siap ada jaring di atas bumbung konsert itu.

*Ramai artis yang pulang selepas konsert berakhir kerana mempunyai aktiviti pada pagi Ahad. Lalu, kes tumpang kereta berlaku di kalangan mereka. Antaranya Ina Naim yang menumpang kereta Rosma.

*Ina kelihatan sibuk bergayut di telefon bimbitnya sebelum konsert bermula. Apabila ditanya, katanya, ada masalah keluarga. Namun yang musykil, raut wajah kelihatan berseri-seri ketika bergayut.

*Malam malang Haiza. Pertama dia hampir tersungkur kerana tersalah pijak tangga pentas. Kedua, jaring di atas pentas terputus lalu jatuh ke atasnya. Ketiga, ada serangga yang suka menghinggap di badannya.

*Fiq bertuah apabila seorang peminat menyanyikan hampir keseluruhan lagu Tiga Malam Tanpa Bintang yang dipersembahkannya. Namun awas Fiq, vokal peminat tersebut mendapat pujian ramai.

*Seorang peminat lelaki terlampau seronok dapat berjumpa dengan Ramlah Ram. Ceritanya, sudah bertahun hendak jumpa Kak Ramlah.

*Ella memang menjadi tumpuan penonton malam itu. Tindakan beraninya yang turun di celah-celah penonton menyebabkan dia diserbu. Akibatnya, pasukan Rela bekerja keras mengawal keadaan.

Powered by Utusan Malaysia

Lindsay Lohan Enters Detox: Report

30 May

LOS ANGELES: Actress Lindsay Lohan entered treatment for alcohol abuse three days after she was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated, People magazine said on Tuesday.

Citing a source close to the family, the weekly magazine said on its website that the actress, 20, had entered a specialised treatment centre, while celebrity gossip site TMZ.com said her lawyer drove her there.

On Saturday, Lohan, who starred in the 1998 film “The Parent Trap” and 2003’s “Freaky Friday,” crashed her black Mercedes into a curb near the Beverly Hills Hotel and was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving and of possession of illegal drugs.

Police Lieutenant Mitch McCann said Lohan had been cited for driving under influence and the case would be presented to the district attorney’s office.

He said the actress could face felony charges because of “some additional contraband found in the vehicle”.

The actress is 20. It is illegal in California for people under the age of 21 to drink alcohol.

The actress, who most recently starred in “Bobby” and “Georgia Rule,” was admitted to a detoxification clinic in January outside Los Angeles after revealing that she attended Alcoholics Anonymous meetings.

The centre in Malibu also treated Britney Spears in February and March.

Lohan is to appear in court August 24.

– AFP/so

Channel News Asia

Bebas Tuduhan Dadah – Mael XPDC

29 May

Oleh NOOR AZMAH IBRAHIM

PETALING JAYA 28 Mei – Penyanyi utama kumpulan Real XPDC, Mael dibebaskan oleh Mahkamah Majistret di sini hari ini daripada tuduhan mengambil dadah jenis Tetrahydrocannabinol pada Mac lalu.

Majistret Azroul Hisham Azulan memutuskan demikian selepas pegawai pendakwa, Cif Inspektor P. Ravi memohon untuk menarik balik pertuduhan berikutan ujian air kencing penyanyi itu disahkan negatif daripada pengaruh dadah.

Mael yang berkemeja lengan panjang biru dan berseluar jean kelihatan ceria dan segera meninggalkan perkarangan mahkamah sebaik dia dibebaskan.

Mael atau nama sebenar Syed Ismail Syed Ibrahim, 39, didakwa mengambil dadah jenis Tetrahydrocannabinol di Jalan Aman 3/59 di sini pada pukul 9.30 malam, 7 Mac lalu.

Dia dituduh mengikut Seksyen 15(1)(a) Akta Dadah Berbahaya 1952 yang membawa hukuman denda maksimum RM5,000 atau penjara tidak lebih dua tahun dan diletakkan di bawah pengawasan polis jika disabitkan kesalahan

Dua tahun lalu, penyanyi yang berasal dari Muar, Johor ini pernah dihukum penjara setahun setelah mengaku salah melanggar perintah pengawasan yang dikeluarkan oleh Mahkamah Majistret Kajang berhubung kesalahan menagih dadah.

Mael yang pernah menjadi vokalis kumpulan rock XPDC, telah didapati melanggar syarat pengawasan polis kerana masih menagih dadah dalam tempoh pengawasan.

Powered by Utusan Malaysia

Fadzil Satukan Moden Dan Tradisional

28 May

UMPAMA dalam pejabat, mungkin itu gambaran yang sesuai untuk diberikan kepada cara susun atur rumah ini. Biarpun ringkas, namun pemiliknya rasa senang berada di kediaman sendiri.

Tidak banyak melibatkan penggunaan perabot dan hiasan, hanya yang diperlukan sahaja.

Ini kerana pemiliknya, seorang lelaki bujang, tidak suka barangan hiasan rumah yang terlalu banyak. Juga yang kecil-kecil, susah untuk membersihkan rumah, katanya.

Ruang rumah banyak yang dibiarkan kosong untuk memberikan keselesaan kepada penghuninya yang kebanyakan masanya dihabiskan di luar.

Bukan itu sahaja, pemiliknya juga lebih senang memilih barangan dari negara-negara yang eksotik, seperti India dan Afrika yang lebih berbentuk tradisional.

Barang-barang ini juga sebagai ilham beliau mencipta susun atur kediaman yang lebih kontemporari dengan mencampurkan unsur-unsur moden dan tradisional.

Barang-barang ini dibeli apabila beliau berkesempatan ke negara-negara berkenaan untuk melancong.

Itulah cita rasa Fadzil Teh, yang menghias pangsapuri mewah yang didiaminya sejak sepuluh tahun lalu mengikut seleranya sendiri.

Asalnya pangsapuri Casaria yang terletak di Taman Maluri itu dibeli secara berkembar dan kemudian dipecahkan di bahagian tengah rumah untuk mendapatkan kawasan yang lebih luas.

Koridor juga dibiarkan terbuka luas dengan tingkap yang mengikut ciri-ciri tradisi Melaka iaitu cermin tingkap tradisional yang berwarna-warni berbentuk segi empat, berkepak dua dan pastinya tampak indah dipandang.

Lantai simen diubah kepada parket untuk menampakkan suasana rumah papan bagi menyampaikan ilham susun atur rumah yang agak tradisional.

Ruang tamu yang luas diletakkan perabot kulit berwarna hitam sebagai tempat istirahat selepas penat seharian bekerja.

Malah ruang meja makan juga diberikan tumpuan ringkas yang serupa. Hanya diletakkan sebuah meja makan mewah untuk lapan orang tetamu dan almari kaca, sudut ini dihiasi dengan balang kaca besar sebagai hiasan.

Selain bilik yang disediakan untuk tetamu Fadzil juga menyediakan sebuah bilik besar khas untuk ruang kerjanya yang menempatkan cakera padat, komputer, fail-fail dan juga gambar-gambar Fauziah Latiff, iaitu penyanyi yang diminatinya.

Mengakui gemar dengan warna-warna garang terutamanya merah, dinding rumah ini diwarnakan dengan warna merah dan hijau serta kuning sambil diselang-seli dengan warna putih untuk menampakkan sedikit kelembutan.

Sebagai insan yang gemar dengan suasana yang damai dan harmoni, hiasan di dalam bilik diberikan keutamaan termasuk pengubahsuaian yang dilakukan di dalam bilik mandi dengan penggunaan jubin-jubin yang mewah.

Bagi menampakkan keunikan warna merah dan putih menjadi pilihan untuk memberikan rasa kesegaran dan kepuasan.

Powered by Utusan Malaysia

Romanian Abortion Movie Wins At Top Prize At Cannes

28 May

CANNES, France – A harrowing Romanian film won Cannes’ top prize late Sunday, as the world’s biggest film festival brought the curtain down on a 12-day run remarkable for its star-studded brightness — and the death-obsessed darkness of its movies.

“4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days” elbowed aside 21 other films to snatch the Palme d’Or at a glittering ceremony marking the end of the festival’s 60th
edition.

Its victory, and that of other films that picked up Cannes’ lesser awards, highlighted a preference for small arthouse fare over big-budget pictures that were also in competition, many of them from the United States.

Cristian Mungiu, the director of the winning movie, said after accepting the golden trophy from 69-year-old US actress Jane Fonda: “You don’t necessarily need big budgets and big stars to make stories.”

His small-budget film evokes the big themes of personal freedom and political repression through a wrenching story about a girl’s illegal abortion in communist-era Romania.

“This is just like the best event that has happened to a wave of Romanian cinema,” he said of his win.

The festival’s runner-up Grand Prix trophy went to “The Mourning Forest,” a low-key tale by Japanese director Naomi Kawase that builds up power as it looks at people haunted by deep personal loss.

Third place, the Jury Prize, was shared by “Persepolis,” an autobiographical animation about grim life under the ayatollahs in Iran by French-Iranian debut director Marjane Satrapi, and “Silent Light,” a Mexican movie about love, death and faith, by Carlos Reygadas.

“I want to dedicate this prize to all Iranians,” Satrapi said, days after Tehran slammed her film as misrepresenting the “achievements of the Islamic
revolution.”

A South Korean actress and a Russian actor picked up awards for their performances in two other films that dealt with mortality and grief.

Best Director went to US filmmaker Julian Schnabel for “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly,” about a mute and paralysed former French magazine editor who struggles to write a book.

Best Script went to “The Edge of Heaven,” a touching movie by a German-born Turkish director about death and forgiveness across an East-West divide.

A special prize for the festival’s 60th anniversary went to US director Gus Van Sant, who was back with “Paranoid Park” after winning the Palme four years
ago for “Elephant.”

The Cannes jury this year was headed by British director Stephen Frears and included actresses Maggie Cheung of Hong Kong and Toni Colette of Australia, and Turkey’s Nobel prize-winning author Orhan Pamuk.

They – and many of the 15,000 festival-goers – sat through a programme that was dominated by dark themes.

Death figured in all the competition line-up, with tragedy being the dominant treatment in most cases.

The few who treated death with bleak humour – mainly veteran directors the Coen brothers, who presented an existential cowboy film called “No Country for
Old Men,” Quentin Tarantino, who brought “Death Proof” to the screen, and Serbian filmmaker Emir Kusturica, with his colourful Balkan romp “Promise Me
This” — were snubbed in the awards.

Out of competition, Michael Moore’s new documentary “Sicko” about the deficiencies of the US health system, and “A Mighty Heart” about the widow of
Daniel Pearl, the Wall Street Journal reporter decapitated by Islamic extremists in 2002, created a stir.

A steady, glittering stream of stars flowed throughout the festival.

Among the famous who trod the red carpet were Brad Pitt and partner Angelina Jolie, George Clooney, Sharon Stone, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jude Law, Matt Damon, Norah Jones, Gong Li, Kylie Minogue and U2.

Several of the A-listers made it clear that they, too, were part of the surge of seriousness that had overtaken Cannes.

DiCaprio presented a documentary he made about the dangers of global warming “The 11th Hour,” while Jolie evoked the pain of the woman she played in “A Mighty Heart.”

Clooney, Pitt, Damon and the rest of the cast attending a world premiere of “Ocean’s Thirteen” held a charity bash to raise money for the Sudanese displaced by the Darfur conflict. – AFP/ra

Channel News Asia

Mila, The Comeback Kid

28 May

Mila is determined to work hard at her singing career.
Mila is determined to work hard at her singing career.

DENNIS CHUA talks to the winner of Akademi Fantasia 5 who was twice on the brink of being dropped.

NOR Syarmilla Jirin is the comeback kid of Akademi Fantasia, Astro’s hit reality talent show.

Twice on the brink of elimination, Nor Syarmilla, or Mila, is the newly-crowned queen of Akademi Fantasia 5.

At the end of the first concert on March 17, host Aznil Nawawi announced that there would be two eliminations. Facing the drop were part-time actress Adyana Kholid (Diya) of Gombak, Mila, and Ebi Kornelis @ Firdaus Yaimal of Sabah (who eventually finished as runner-up).

Diya went home; just as Aznil was about to announce the next to go, the producers decided to spare Mila and Ebi because contestant Wan Nurul Zhana Wan Hanizan, the former Traxx FM disc jockey, had withdrawn from the show due to personal reasons shortly before the first concert.

Then at the end of the third concert on April 1, Mila once again faced the drop, together with fellow Penangite Aryanna Ahmad (Dekna).

Once again, she was relieved: Astro pulled up a “kejutan” (surprise) and spared them both, as the musical theme for the evening was forgiveness and mercy.

Looking back, Mila said: “Sometimes I feel if Zhana had not pulled out, I would not have won…”

She said that her two near-elimination experiences were a “wake-up call” and from that day onwards, she worked extra hard to master all the skills the Academy’s teachers and principal Roslan Aziz taught her.

She improved by leaps and bounds from the fourth concert onwards, her SMS votes rose significantly and placed her in the third, second and finally first position at the end of subsequent concerts.

Life hasn’t been easy for Penang girl Mila, the eldest of security guard Jirin Burhan’s three daughters.

“We learnt the value of thrift at a young age. I was never to spend more than RM1 for my school meals in primary school,” she said.

Mila studied in Sekolah Kebangsaan Teluk Kumbar in her hometown, Bayan Lepas, and later did her secondary education in Sekolah Menengah Teluk Kumbar and Sekolah Menengah Teknik Tunku Abdul Rahman in Ayer Itam, George Town.

She was a member of her primary school’s nasyid choir, and took part in her first singing contest at the Prangin Mall in George Town when she was 16.

“One of the earliest songs I remember singing was Sudirman’s Salam Terakhir. I was 13 and performed it for a teacher’s farewell party in Sekolah Menengah Teknik Tunku Abdul Rahman,” she said, adding that she was also a member of her school’s choir.

Mila also learnt to dance when she was 17 and was one of 20 students who represented Penang in the 2004 Citrawarna Malaysia celebrations in Dataran Merdeka, Kuala Lumpur.

“That was my first visit to Kuala Lumpur. I only returned for AF5,” she said.

Jirin, 46, and his wife, factory employee Zurina Haron, 36, insisted that Mila complete Form Five before embarking on a singing career.

“Emphasising the importance of education, my parents only gave their blessings to my singing career once I completed my Form Five,” she said.

Mila’s father is a former musician, and excels in playing the drums. “He taught me a lot about music, both traditional and modern. My mother and my youngest sister, Nor Fazlin Sakina, 10, also love singing.”

Mila began her singing career by performing with various singing groups and bands at dinner shows and weddings. She performed twice or thrice a year in Penang, and sometimes in Langkawi.

“We sang mostly for tourists and this is where I learnt to improve my English,” she said.

Her parents gave her full support when she chose to audition for Akademi Fantasia 4 last year. She was rejected, but luck was on her side this year.

“Akademi Fantasia has been a wonderful learning process for me. I’ve learnt so much about music, performing and the people of my country,” she said.

She cites stage performance teacher Fatimah Abu Bakar, vocal performance teacher Adnan Abu Hassan and vocal techniques teacher Syafizawati Sharif as her favourite coaches. “Cikgu Fatimah and Cikgu Syafizawati were like mother figures to me.”

When she learnt that Roslan Aziz was the principal of AF5, Mila initially felt a little nervous, as Roslan is known to be a “cikgu garang” (strict teacher). That feeling changed as she got to know them. “My teachers were a lot nicer than I thought. They may have been stern and demanding at times, but at the end of the day, they cared for us.”

Mila has been a follower of Akademi Fantasia since its second season. Among her favourites are AF 2 heart-throb Wan Muhammad Khair Wan Azami (Kaer) and A 4’s second runner-up Farhan Azizan.

“I love Farhan for her superb vocals and versatility. She is also a fighter, who made it in AF after exiting two Malaysian Idol seasons.

“Kaer is mature, knowledgeable and romantic. His hit song Izin Ku Pergi is so lovely,” she said.

Among established artistes, her idol is Anita Sarawak, whom she dubs Malaysia’s “queen of entertainment”.

Now that she’s a budding star, Mila promises not to rest on her laurels.

“I’ll continue to improve my singing and performing skills, as Abang Lan (Roslan) always tells us. Nothing comes easy in life, and certainly not the status of a superstar,” she said, adding that she plans to learn songwriting and playing the piano.

Powered by New Straits Times