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Crazy Christmas

December 18, 2010

Event: “Crazy Christmas” by Dream Academy (featuring Vocaluptuous)

Venue: Drama Centre Theatre
Run: 2nd Dec – 19th Dec 2010

I remarked to Ilkosa that I usually find it quite difficult to review shows like “Crazy Christmas”, cos it’s music heavy and there’s not too much else to talk about in terms of writing and plot and characterisation and stuff.

First off, I think the moniker “crazy” in “Crazy Christmas” is a tad out of place, as the general tone of the show isn’t really one of craziness…but if you really had to choose an adjective to alliterate with “Christmas”, then yeah, I suppose “crazy” is probably the way to go.

Not a big issue.

I suppose “classy” or “charming” just doesn’t have the same ring to it, although both would have made a more appropriate description.

This is Dream Academy’s second attempt at staging “Crazy Christmas” (the first was in 2008), and the first thing that strikes you about the promos is the fact that they’ve roped in so many talents into one 90-minute show.

How can you go wrong with the collective talents of local theatre luminaries such as Selena Tan, Pam Oei, George Chan, Sebastian Tan, Denise Tan, Karen Tan, RJ Rosales, Robin Goh and the like?

Not to mention the other-worldly talents of local a cappella group Vocaluptuous.

If this isn’t bang for your buck, then I don’t know what is.

The voice that impressed me the most throughout the night was definitely that of RJ Rosales.

He starred as The Beast in W!ld Rice’s “Beauty and the Beast” in 2009, but it seems to me his singing has improved by leaps and bounds since then.

The highlight of the night must have been the way RJ Rosales totally nailed the high note in his solo number “O Holy Night”, when he dug deep to hit the climax lyric “night” towards the end.

He is blessed with a beautiful voice that one can listen to forever.

Vocaluptuous wowed the audience with their spiffy suits (as would befit a group billed as “Singapore’s premier a cappella group”), solid vocals and sophisticated arrangements (thanks to member and arranger John Lee, who is also the brother of Dick Lee).

Sebastian Tan’s solo gig had to have been one of the more enjoyable segments of the night, as he was simply a riot with his usual “Ah Beng” routine, coupled with a fine singing voice to boot.

Pam Oei’s segment as the troubled bat with an identity crisis was amusing, but it was more a case of “it’s funny because it’s Pam Oei doing it”.

I just didn’t really get the whole “I want to be part of Christmas” thrust that the writer was trying to bring out, and when mixed together with the other thrust of “It’s tough being a bat”, the segment just started to become a little bit convoluted.

And even though the entire segment was trying to build up to the “Chinese New Year” punchline, I felt that it didn’t make that much of an impact and the payoff just wasn’t really there.

Likewise for a few of the other comic sketches, such as the two girls fighting over a new guy named “Elvis”.

Generally the comedy was serviceable, helped in large parts by the talented comedians who delivered it…though not entirely hilarious.

However, in terms of the singing – which was what we all ultimately came for – there was absolutely no way in which one could find fault with the production.

I think the “Crazy Christmas” franchise has established for itself a fine place in the local theatre calendar as a charming, classy production which you’d go to if you were looking to spend Christmas with beautifully-rendered songs and a touch of local comedy.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. December 19, 2010 12:51 am

    The voice that impressed me the most throughout the night was definitely that of RJ Rosales…it seems to me his singing has improved by leaps and bounds since then.

    I had the same impression! I was thinking, is this the same RJ in “Beauty and the Beast”? Then I began to think that maybe it was because of the beast mask then.

    • Jeremy permalink*
      December 19, 2010 11:16 pm

      Yes, good point. Maybe the mask had hampered his voice projection somewhat. I hadn’t thought of that!


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