If not for show-stealer Leona Lewis and a few others, the recent MTV Asia Awards 2008 would be bereft of the celebs, glitz and glam befitting such an event. What a crying shame, writes RADIN SRI GHAZALI.
BIG awards should feature big names, no?
But at the recent MTV Asia Awards 2008 in Genting Highlands, fans hardly got to see any A-list stars except for Leona Lewis, OneRepublic and Panic at the Disco – fans could literally count the celebrities who walked the red carpet.
Sad to say, even major Asian stars were missing at the awards show.
Efforts should be taken to make the event grander the next time round by having more famous faces gracing the event.
The event kicked off with American star Jabbawockeez from San Diego. Then Pussycat Dolls, dressed in leather pants and not-so-revealing tops, took to the stage with its hit number Buttons.
They may be good performers but the girls’ vocals failed to impress.
Lead singer Nicole Scherzinger was pitchy while fellow member Melody Thornton overdid herself with her overpowering back-up vocals.
The girls also sang their latest single, When I Grow Up.
Next to perform was the biggest breakthrough act of the year, OneRepublic.
The crowd went wild when the band took the stage. Lead singer Ryan Tedder gave an impeccable performance with Apologise.
The band led the audience to sing along with them the song that brought them fame, thanks to music mogul Timbaland.
They then performed an upbeat number entitled Stop and Stare.
Asian artistes, of course, also graced the event.
A special collaboration from Singapore was Electrico and Stefanie Sun’s Save Our Souls, a song written for victims of natural disasters in Asia.
Electrico showed great showmanship, but Sun failed to live up to expectations with her weak vocals and dull stage presence: the winner of Favourite Artiste Singapore for five years running gave one of the most monotonous performances of the event!
New Irish band The Script did well. Its lead singer Danny O’Donoghue sang the band’s biggest hit, The Man Who Can’t Be Moved, brilliantly with jazzy vocals done in indie rock.
But it was Leona Lewis’ performance that stole the show.
The X-Factor winner took to the stage with Better in Time followed by her massive hit, Bleeding Love.
Hailed as the new Mariah Carey by Entertainment Weekly, Lewis gave an outstanding vocal performance. In her white lacy dress and with a simple hairdo, she came off as a beauty with extraordinary talent.
Korean boy band Super Junior with an entourage of 13 good-looking Rain wannabes made the crowd go wild as they showed off dance moves in Don’t Don.
Rock boy band The Click Five (which is no stranger to Malaysia) then took to the stage singing Empty to the accompaniment of rhythmic beats from kompang players.
One of the most awaited moments was the performance by Project EAR (East Asian Revolution) comprising Malaysia’s Pop Shuvit, Thailand’s Thaitanium and Dandee (Silksounds), Indonesia’s Saint Loco, Singapore’s Daly (Ahli Fiqir) and the Philippines’ Jamir and Lean (Slapshock).
The lads proved that the Asian rock scene is something to look out for when they gave a splendid rendition of Hey Now and Marabahaya.
Indeed what can be better than a local dose of rock by Asian homegrown boys? The collaboration is also the first of its kind to be done in an awards show.
Unfortunately, the bands had to perform on a cramped stage, away from the main platform of the night’s event.
American rock band Panic at the Disco closed the event. Known for their lavish performances, the band sang I Write Sins Not Tragedies and Nine in the Afternoon with a circus troop and a marching band in tow!
Meanwhile, award hosts Jared Leto and Karen Mok did not live up to expectations as befitting the night’s event. In the first place, there was hardly any chemistry between them.
Leto was too laid-back while Mok was too prim and proper. Still, Leto tried his best to go Asian by speaking in Korean, Mandarin and Bahasa Malaysia.
“Aku cinta padamu,” said the singer of 30 Seconds to Mars to the moshpitters.
As for the awards, this year’s winners were surprising.
Nicholas Teo’s win was unexpected as the Kuching lad beat big guns like Datuk Siti Nurhaiza, Faizal Tahir and Pop Shuvit.
“I’m sorry Siti,” said the 27-year-old Teo after winning the award, adding, “Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would be going home with this award tonight.”
Teo created history by being the first non-Malay singer to win the award. Siti and Mawi were the previous winners.
“I would have never won this award were it not for my fans here in Malaysia.”
Meanwhile, OneRepublic won the Best Hook Up award for their collaboration with Timbaland in Apologise.
“We are grateful that the song has taken us places. Working with Timbaland was a great opportunity to expand the band’s music,” said Tedder.
New Straits Times