Sunday, January 4, 2009

The Fallen Utopia by 黑白馆 (Oh Beh Gong Drama Studio)

First and foremost, I attended this stage play upon invitation from Chee Boon who was one of the performers. I have no idea that this play was in Mandarin neither my other friends. Luckily, I still managed to understand the general idea of the play. The Fallen Utopia is presented by Oh Beh Gong Drama Studio. The stage play brought us to 2038 in which the world is bleak and dreary. Fertile lands have turned to desert, natural resources are diminishing and human beings are dying out. Accordingly, this stage play is hoped to alert the mankind on the destruction they have made on the planet and the consequences in long run. Pollutions, wars and the fall of mankind are the elements featured in the play. All profits from ticket sales will be donated to the Pusat Penjagaan Kanak-Kanak Cacat Taman Megah. So, you have a chance to watch this superb performance and at the same time donate to charity. Before we begin to dig the story line, I would like to apologise should the pictures taken are blur, not clear and etc. The crews actually do not allow audience to take photos during the play-well, it is a general rule. However, Chee Boon allowed me to do so but must 'pandai-pandai'. My camera was turned on from the beginning till the end. Reason? Using a normal digital camera and to take photo without flash means that you hand can't be shaky while taking pictures. It is a difficult task as the performers are moving around all the time. Thus, I need to snap few times for a same scene to get hopefully a nice photo. It took me quite a long time to edit, crop, resize and combine all the pictures. Choosing a right picture from the 200+ total is a headache as well. Well, it is my normal routine anyway. Please click to enlarge the picture.
The Fallen Utopia cast introduction Yew Joe as Wei Wen Amanda Wong as Xiao Jing Raymond Thee as Grandpa Charine Ch'ng as Xiao jing's mother and Xi Xi Maggie Chan as Wen Fu Shao Yu Chee Boon as Lao Wang Shi Hau as blind man-the predictor and officer
Top: The story begins with a world with hope in which you can see the joyous moment of the people. Out of sudden, an earthquake happened and the whole world turned to opposite becoming a world without hope in which people are dying. Bottom: A group of people is surrounding a person holding an apple (food) and try to snatch from the person. It showcases human act beyond imagination when they are in helpless condition and when things are really drying out.
Xiao Jing, her mother and her grandpa together with a bunch of fugitives from other city arrived at City of Hope [xi wang zhi du]. A government officer from the city then came in to report the number of fugitives arrived to the city. Grandpa then asked the officer for water. However, his request has been rejected and instead was told to seek waters by themselves. This is due to that no fresh waters are available at that time and the waters are polluted by human being those days.
Xiao Jing complained on their fate and their struggle for water to survive in this new land. However, grandpa and her mother keep advising her to be patient and believe there will be hope so long as they lives in this world. Xiao Jing is a very stubborn and emotional type person. Her reluctance to listen to advice angered her mother. Grandpa then was crying out for waters to be made available to them. This is heard by a young man named Wei Wen. He is sympathized with the old man and then offered him a bottle of water. This is then noticed by Wei Wen's mother who prevented him from doing so. The mother told grandpa and other fugitives that they can only have the bottle of water if they paid a large sum of money which is impossible for them. *updated: 500 bucks for 1 litre
Due to no water supply, the fugitives are dying. Wei Wen then offered his bottle of water to Grandpa and asked him to distribute the waters to the other to prevent them from dying. There is also a scene where Xiao Jing creates a chaos in which she disbelief of the kindness of Wei Wen and reaffirm that they do not have such big amount of money for it.
Xiao Jing complained on their presence in this land and their failure to acquire water. The hawkers heard them and offered them with their products. Once they mentioned they have no money, the hawkers then laughed loudly and scolded them to get out from their city. Xiao Jing argued with the three hawkers which then led to her mother slapping her for her ignorance to her mother advice.
These are the three hawkers. Wei Wen's mother is selling water, Lao Wang is selling fresh oxygen while another one is selling foods. Have a deep look on Lao Wang character. He successfully portrayed an 'ah pek' type character, a messy person and rude behaviour. His ability to perform the mentioned characters really surprised us. We have never seen him doing so. Among all the performers, he is the one with the loudest voice and needed to scream every time he speaks. We were initially quite worry and would like to buy him Strepsils. He is seen digging his nose and playing with the nose wax all the time. *updated: 1 time inhale of oxygen = 50 bucks
Lao Wang and Wei Wen's mother (wen fu sao) are teasing each other on the product they sold. Each is claiming their product is the better one.
A young man among the fugitives who can't resist his hunger begged the hawker to offer them foods. This of course irked the woman and in turn she scolded him who have no money. This young man then stealed a brown packet of foods from the woman and then attempted to run away. The woman loud scream in response caused immediate interference by Lao Wang who then caught him red handed. Wei Wen's mother then interrupted and helped to scold the young man as well as other fugitives.
Wei Wen then came in to prevent the woman from sending him to the police officer. He voluntary paid the packet of foods for the young man. In return, his mother who are annoyed scolded him for being too kind with the fugitives.
This is a scene where the Grandpa keep reminding Xiao Jing to be patient and that there will be hope so long they live in this world. Her mother at this point of time has been MIA ever since the last conversation with her also to remind her to be patient. However, Xiao Jing is yet to believe what they had said and complaining non stop.
Out of sudden from no where, Xiao Jing is informed that her mother has died. She then cried helplessly for the loss. A salute for her to well portrayed a character that cry all the time. As for me, it seems to be a real one. Despite the death, this does not stop the hawkers from scolding the young girl. They even teased her and claimed her for the reason of the death. Wei Wen then tried to calm her. At first I thought there will be a love scene between her and the young man or Wei Wen's mother and Lao Wang. However, this is not included in the play. Xiao Jing cried and cried until her mother resurrected from death to comfort her. Her mother will to her is the same thing which is to believe that as long as they continue to live in this world, there will be a hope. Finally, she takes her mother words.
Lao Wang and his product oxygen. As for me, this concept is quite interesting. A pot of plant is placed inside a big bottle container. Customers need to pay should they want to inhale the fresh oxygen.
Next, a blind man came into the city. He asked for offering of water. Wei Wen in no doubts offered him a bottle of water. His kindness then prompted the blind man who is a fortune teller to offer his service to him. The blind man used his hand to touch Wei Wen face and told him that there will be a big disaster happening soon. To stop this disaster, a girl of hope will arrive to the City of Hope.
Grandpa confirmed that he had heard such thing before. The girl of hope is the hope that he and Xiao Jing mother always mentioned. The girl of hope will stop all the suffering they are having now.
The disaster then happened. The water bottle belonged to Wei Wen mother have lost, the plant by Lao Wang dead, Wei Wen water turned purple and many people died from virus. Every one is worried on the survival in this world without the basic needs.
The officer of the city informing the people to 'take care of themselves'. The Government has no solution for the current disaster. Applause for him for taking two character in this play which are the officer as well as the blind man. His ability to speak clearly in both characters impressed me. WOW.. that was a lot of things he spoke and I found no error while he was delivering the messages. A good candidate to be a news reporter.
Finally, the girl of hope arrived to the City of Hope which happened to be a pregnant woman. Pregnancy in that kind of situation? This is what the people believed is impossible and miracle. Every one is overjoyed that the hope they are waiting for had arrived. Right after her coming to the city, Grandpa then died. Grandpa is happy with the arrival of the pregnant woman but sadly he told them that he cannot be with them together to see how the woman or hope changes the situation. Again, Xiao Jing lost her relative and again she cried.
All of them give their highest priority to the pregnant woman. They treated her very well. The woman did not know how she could help them. She then gave a seed given to her by the blind man to Wei Wen. She met with the blind man long time ago and he has asked her to plant the seed at the City of Hope. Wei Wen then planted the seed of hope.
At the same time, Lao Wang has become insane due to the death of his plants which was his incomes. We can see the conversation between him and a devil (he himself) that controls his mind. The devil asked him to kidnap the pregnant woman and sell her off so that he can obtained a large sum of money. So, Lao Wang followed and went to find the pregnant woman.
Lao Wang then overpowered the pregnant woman which then shocked the rests. He threatened to kill her with a knife and asked others to back off. Wei Wen tried to persuade him to release the pregnant woman. He reiterated that she is the girl of hope and that she was carrying a baby. A fight has taken place and the pregnant woman was freed. The woman then cried for pain not help. It's time for the baby to be delivered. Some accompanied the pregnant woman to walk down from the stage and to the delivery room.
In the fight, Wei Wen was stabbed by Lao Wang on his stomach. At the same time, the others prayed to God for the safety of the both mother and the baby as well as a successful delivery. Finally, the baby is born and both of them are safe. This is not the case for Wei Wen.
As Chee Boon said, Lao Wang killed Wei Wen 'kao kao' and therefore must die. Lao Wang kept apologised to Wei Wen. Wei Wen's mother cried helplessly seeing her son is dying who then certified dead. The director should has asked Xiao Jing to cry as well at this scene. The play ended with everyone surrounded the tree of hope planted from the seed. Now, everything has being overturned and the hope is realised. However, many has died.
The performers.. Congrats to all! You guys done a very profesional job! This picture shows how difficult to capture a shot when there is motion. The result is as seen.
We were given a feedback form for us to rate the performance, performers, crews and others. For photograph purpose, I kept my clean copy. Intially, feel so bad because I can't give them a feedback. Nonetheless, I think I had given mine here. Haha..not bad, didn't expect that.
The perfomers stood at the exit to shake hand and to thank the audience for attending.
My high school friends (Me, Teng Foung, Chee Boon, Chern Yung, Jian Feng, Chew)
Another two girls (Kar Wai and Suet Yen) and a teacher, Mdm. Chew Chee Boon and his friend The guys Smile every one~ We have a golden opportunity to take a photo with the performers. This is the place where the stage play was conducted. Auditorium Taman Budaya Kuala Lumpur, Jalan Tun H. S. Lee (beside the KL Traffic Police Station)
* The stage play is conducted on 27 and 28 December 2008. Each day with two sessions at 3pm and 8pm.


Anonymous said...

Great performance... I wish I was there too...

Boon said...

Lao Wang here... Ha! Ha! Ha!

Really thanks u guys come and support me...!!! And thanks as well... for the post tat u making it for whole day... from OBG Drama Studio as well as "The Fallen Utopia actor and crew would like to thanks u guys again...

n hor d tunnel tat bring u to year 2038 and stage backdrop especially the golden tree...ok mah...? I was d stage designer ler...

Ha! Ha! Ha!

KwOnG FeI said...

good idea..
but then at first they asked us to write a message to hang on the tree..
we do not what the message for? to whom? for what? and etc? initially i thought for charity..lucky i din write any
the concept of ppl lying down is nice..
it let us to identify our own friends in the dark by knowing their physical feature..
haha.. u know what I meant..

Boon said...

Actually that is a wishing tree... U just write any of ur wishes on that paper and hang it on the tree...

-GiNo- said...

hahaha the wishing tree's purpose is suppose to be explain by the PR people means is their mistake !!!
thnx for coming besides ....
support boon sumore on our upcoming drama ...this may
stay tune for more info

KwOnG FeI said...

erm.. not the PR mistake i guess..
it is the language barrier.. haha
they did say write message on it but it wasn't clear on what purpose..
and they were peaking in mandarin..
so next time.. preferably there is some cantonese or engligh spekaing PR although it is assumed those who attend know mandarin..
but in exception for us..hahahaha

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