Sunday, October 21, 2007


Friday October 19, 2007

Legendary Rose

It is a challenge for the shy Tin Tan to play legendary striptease queen Rose Chan in the musical, Rose Rose I Love You. Stage actress Tin Tan is beginning to get panicky. In two weeks, she will be the star attraction in musical Rose Rose I Love You, in which she plays Rose Chan, legendary cabaret queen of Malaya.

Friday October 19, 2007
During a recent interview, Tin had minimal make up and her hair was tied back in a ponytail. Sporting a pair of blue jeans with a black and white blouse, she appeared shy and quiet. One can only imagine how the 29-year-old is going to portray Chan, notorious for her brazen exploitation of her sexuality. “I am a shy person so having to play a cabaret dancer-turned-striptease is a challenge. I was initially nervous but after a month of rehearsals, I’m beginning to get into the character of sultry Rose (Chan),” said Tin, adding this is her first lead character in an English musical.

The theatre production by Integrated Expressions is inspired by the life and times of Rose Chan, the erotic cabaret queen of Malaya. It will be staged at Genting International Showroom from Nov 2 to 4 and Nov 9 to 11.

Directed by Low Ngai Yuen with music direction by Penny Low, Rose Rose I Love You is the second collaboration between Penny and Ngai Yuen since The Girl from Ipoh. Also in the cast are Tony Eusoff, K.K. Wong, Ling Tan, Lim Tiong Wooi and Anrie Too.

Rose Rose I Love You is set during the post-war period of the 1950s, which for most people was a difficult time of rebuilding lives and struggling to survive. The story centres on a travelling company of performers whose nightly earnings are dictated by the intensity of audience applause. Naturally, these performers will stop at nothing to outdo each other every time to ensure a decent earning for each show. “The musical is inspired by Rose Chan and highlights some characters that may have had existed during her time. It looks at what a performer experiences in the cabaret and also the person behind the facade,” said Ee Lai Cheng, executive producer of the musical.

Tin, who holds a degree in Technology Management from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, is a contemporary dancer and stage performer. Some of her accolades include choreographing The Little Noise Choir’s Musical Midnight Puppet, acting in Chinese play Chup! Take a Break and performing at Akademi Seni Kebudayaan dan Warisan Kebangsaan’s The Time and Freedom and Boredom. Tin is currently pursuing a postgraduate course in Performing Arts (Dance) at Universiti Malaya in Petaling Jaya, Selangor. She is the younger sister of singer-songwriter Ah Niu, who is now based in Taiwan. To understand her character better, Tin has been reading up on Chan and also speaking to people who knew of her acts. Having done much research, she now empathises Chan’s reasons for becoming a striptease.

I think Chan was an incredible person. Her exploitation oof her sexuality was unthinkable in the 1950s. She underwent many sacrifices to make a living when times were tough.
“For the performance, I will be dancing very sexily and sporting corsets and cabaret costumes designed by Melinda Looi
,” said Tin, who has been honing her acting skills by watching cabaret-themed shows like Moulin Rogue and Cabaret.

There will be only one scene in which Tin appears “nude”. In the musical, Tin and the cast members will belt out songs like Beautiful Girls (Sean Kingston), Like a Virgin (Madonna), I Will Survive (Gloria Gaynor) and a Mandarin number, Rose, Rose I Love You (Yao Lee).
Carmen Soo, who plays Rose’s rival, Xuan, said playing a cabaret dancer will be a refreshing change from her previous mild roles.

I have always wanted to play a character that is different from my personality. It has been an interesting journey because I play a rowdy girl and it is a new experience learning how to behave like a gangster,” said Soo, whose acting credits include Hungry Ghost Anthology, Baik Punya Cilok, 3rd Generation and The Girl from Ipoh. To improve on her acting skills, Soo has been watching Hong Kong gangster themed movies like Internal Affairs and Young and Dangerous. “This is the first time I am acting in a musical, which involves singing, dancing and acting. Pressure is beginning to build up, as I am not professionally trained in singing.
“We have been training hard and I hope the audience will enjoy the musical with its entertaining songs
,” said Soo.

Rose Rose I Love You will be staged at Genting International Showroom from Nov 2-4 and Nov 9-11. Showtime is 3pm and 8.30pm and tickets are priced at RM68, RM88 and RM118. Astro subscribers and Genting WorldCard members get a 10% and 15% discount, respectively.

For more information, call 03-27181118, 012-2923803 (Cindy Chin) or 012-3962840 (Sharon Wee) or browse roserose-iloveu.blogspot.com.