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Don't Forget Your Lyrics

19 Nov

SINGAPORE : Half a million dollars – that’s how much a forgotten lyric might cost you if you are a contestant on new Channel 5 game show, “Don’t Forget the Lyrics”.

Hosted by local celebrity, Gurmit Singh, contestants are required to sing out – karaoke style – the words to fill in the blanks in the song. And if you can keep singing it right for 10 songs, you’ll walk away with S$500,000!

Easy peasy you say? Well, not quite.

“These people who come along thinking they know the song and when the music stops, the lyrics go away, they get stumped!” Gurmit said.

“My theory is this, when people see blanks, dashes, their minds go blank as well.”

Each game consists of three tiers which are divided into nine levels. The difficulty of the challenge increases with each tier and the tiers dictate how many blank lyrics contestants have to remember and sing within a stipulated time.

Contestants have to get every exact lyric correct to pass the stage, and like “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire”, they can get help if they wish to.

Each contestant is entitled to three lifelines also known as “backups” that they can use when they are stuck at any point of the competition. But each backup can only be used once.

“Backup Singer” allows the contestant to bring a friend or family member on stage to help sing the missing lyrics.

If contestants opt for “Two Words”, they can choose any two words they have filled in to check if they are right.

The last, “3 Lines”, allows contestants to pick the correct answer from three multiple choice options.

“Every time you answer correctly, you keep going up (the different levels), higher and higher. But every time you lock in the words and they are wrong, any single word, any single punctuation is wrong, you go to either zero or S$10,000 threshold level,” Gurmit explained.

The game show also features celebrity contestants like MediaCorp actresses Fiona Xie and Jade Seah, characters from Channel 5 sitcoms such as Phua Chu Kang (Gurmit Singh), Sergeant Dollah (Suhaimi Yusof), Adrianna Wow and Barbarella Chanel (both played by Michelle Chong) and even “Singapore Idol” winners Taufik Batisah and Hady Mirza, as well as runner-up Jonathan Leong.

But the one to look out for is actress Andrea Fonseka who is “really good”. “She knows many songs, she’s like a walking encyclopedia,” said Gurmit.

“Don’t Forget the Lyrics” premiered last year in the United States, and Singapore is the 30th country in the world to showcase the popular game show. It premieres Thursday, 27 November, at 8pm on MediaCorp’s Channel 5.

– CNA/km

Channel News Asia

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Elle Magazine Celebrates 15 Years In Singapore

29 Oct

SINGAPORE: The world’s longest-running international women’s fashion magazine, Elle, celebrated its 15th year in Singapore on Wednesday.

Over 400 of the city’s fashion icons and beauty queens graced the event at the Red Dot Museum.

The evening kicked off in style with a fashion show, showcasing the latest designs by TopShop and TopMan.

The programme also included the Elle Awards 2008 which recognises Singapore’s best in fashion, beauty and lifestyle.

36 awards were given out, and MediaCorp’s Chua En Lai and Michelle Chong walked away with the Actor and Actress of the Year awards.

Even the people who did not attend the party will get a birthday treat – Elle’s November issue comes with more than S$50,000 worth of giveaways for their readers.

– CNA/so

Channel News Asia

Catch Him If You Can

28 Jul

SINGAPORE : You’ve been watching a lot of Chua Enlai on TV recently. Only, you might not have realised it.

“Chua Enlai, who?” asked a few people when this reporter did a straw poll – despite them living on a diet of TV and fizzy drinks.

You know, that obnoxious kueh chang (rice dumpling) shop manager, Dennis, who brown-noses Tan Kheng Hua’s Tow Kay Neo character in “Sayang Sayang”? And Al, that gossipy colleague of Adrian Pang’s James in “Parental Guidance 2”?

“Ohhh! That guy! He’s quite funny.”

Yes, that would be Enlai. He also played multiple characters in “The Noose” with Michelle Chong and Gurmit Singh, appeared in three seasons of “My Sassy Neighbour” with Patricia Mok and hosted two seasons of “Heartland Getaways”.

He can currently be seen on MediaCorp TV’s Channel 5 in “Parental Guidance 2”, “Sayang Sayang”, and in the second season of “The Noose” when it returns next month – this time, replacing Gurmit as the news anchor.

But if you’re still scratching your head, go ask your kids. They’ll know Enlai as Science Guy PI and as that fun guy on “Hobby TV and Jobs for Juniors” on Kids Central.

The 29-year-old actor is a lot of fun off-screen, too.

When he met TODAY for this interview at the Pan Pacific hotel, the slight Fly Entertainment artiste gamely climbed up a runged wooden partition and wedged himself into a cranny for the photo shoot. Mind you, he pulled these stunts with a braced back, which he injured earlier in the year, and he’s still seeing a physiotherapist.

As we found out during our very long chat, Enlai has a tendency to digress into his random little anecdotes and comically forgets the original questions (“The Red House pepper crab is damn good!”; “I’m a complete champagne brunch lover!”; “I’m a very good squatter – I’ve never had a squat toilet, but I can squat very well and for a long time.”)

But when it comes to acting, Enlai, who lived and studied in New Zealand for 12 years, is dead serious.

“Acting is about imitating life. The human condition really interests me,” said the thespian who is recognised for his theatre works such as “Shopping and F***ing”, “Landmarks: Asian Boys Vol 2”, and “Fundamentally Happy”. He’s also in the cast of “Superhero Diaries” which has been postponed till March next year.

“(Whether you see yourself as a) star or an actor, I think if you get too much up your own a*se, when it becomes about you so much, it’s not very interesting, is it? It should never be about Chua Enlai; it should always be about the character and that world,” he said.

Maybe he’d be okay with you knowing his face, but not his name, after all.

Channel News Asia

Tay Ping Hui Is 'Not Cool'

20 Jun

SINGAPORE: Beneath that suave and cool exterior, Tay Ping Hui is really a klutz who trips over himself, weirds people out with his OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder), and is “terrible with women”.

If you can’t imagine it, see for yourself in the MediaCorp artiste’s next dramedy where he plays a former CID officer on the wrong end of the cool-chart.

Filming started on Thursday after a prayer ceremony held at Caldecott Broadcast Centre.

Speaking to TODAY, Tay revealed that in reality, he’s not always the picture of cool collectedness he seems to portray.

“I’ve walked into a tree before,” said the 37-year-old of his clumsiness.

“I may be quiet and low key but I don’t think I’m cool at all. That’s so lame.”

In Crime Busters (its working title), Tay’s “witty” and “intelligent” character investigates cold cases in an ulu four-staff department together with his young partner (Dawn Yeoh).

For her role, Yeoh trades her saccharine sweet princess-y image for a more androgenous look, complete with a shorter do and a spunkier get-up.

The series also stars MediaCorp’s new face to look out for – Paige Chua. The 27-year-old model recently starred as Fiona Xie’s sister in Just in Singapore and can currently be seen on TV in La Femme alongside Zoe Tay.

You’ll be seeing lots more of the comely actress when the nitty-gritties of her contract with MediaCorp are finalised.

Shaun Chen, Pan Ling Ling, Alan Tern, Rebecca Lim, Zhang Yao Dong, Joey Swee, Rayson Tan and Michelle Chong round up the cast.

Channel News Asia

Nine Faces Of Channel 5

12 May

SINGAPORE : Here’s a quick pop quiz: What do Gurmit Singh, Adrian Pang, Fiona Xie, Michelles Chia and Chong, Andrea Fonseka, Utt, Aaron Aziz and Jas Arora have in common?

If you don’t know, you’re obviously not watching enough TV. Suffice it to say, these are the nine faces of Channel 5 who are tasked with spearheading the channel’s latest re-branding exercise, which aims to put more home-grown talent on air.

Their faces certainly are familiar enough: Gurmit is a 13-year Channel 5 stalwart; you could say that Adrian has been in almost every drama, variety, comedy and game show; Andrea became TV’s “it” girl just after one season on Deal Or No Deal; Fiona and Michelle Chia have successfully crossed over from Channel 8; Michelle Chong is known for her comic turns on TV; Utt’s perennial hosting duties have given him a wider demographic; while Aaron and Jas had impressive outings on Heartlanders and Achar!, respectively.

So why then?

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President Nathan To Perform At President's Star Charity 2007

13 Sep

SINGAPORE : The President’s Star Charity will be back on September 30.

President S R Nathan will be performing for the first time in this annual charity event.

Julie Sim-Chew, Executive Producer, President’s Star Charity 2007, said: “The highlight for this President Star Charity is of course having President Nathan take centrestage.

“He will be reciting this poem called ‘The Desiderata’ by Max Ehrmann. It’s an inspirational poem where it tells man how to live. When we proposed the idea to him, he was very forthcoming and he has personally selected certain portions of the poem (which) he feels that he is comfortable to deliver.”

In another first, Channel NewsAsia presenter Glenda Chong will be the show’s host.

She said: “When I present the news, I usually reach my audience through the camera lens. This time round, I will be hosting the PSC and I will actually see them staring back at me.

“I believe it will be a little bit nerve-wrecking, but I have veteran Gurmit, and I have the very glib-talking Desmond. I know I’m in good hands. So I guess I might be a little bit nervous, but ultimately when the show starts, it should not be a problem.”

Other stars like Kym Ng, Michelle Chong, Jade Seah and Taufik Batisah will also be performing.

The President’s Star Charity 2007 will be shown ‘live’ on MediaCorp TV’s Channel 5 on September 30 from 7.30pm to 10pm.

Proceeds from the show will go to 32 charities.

Last year, the charity event raised more than S$4 million. – CNA/ms

Channel News Asia