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HOSSAN-AH! Celebrating 20 Leong Years!

August 6, 2013

HossanLeong20LeongYears1Event: Hossan-ah! Celebrating 20 Leong Years!
Venue: Drama Centre Theatre
Run: 1st – 4th Aug 2013

Let’s Hear It For The (Singapore) Boy

Gosh, has it really been 20 years?

Who can forget how a gawky, fresh-faced, guitar-wielding young man by the name of Sponge first burst onto the national consciousness on a particular episode of “Under One Roof” almost two decades ago, as the struggling musician who was going after Denise Tan?

The zany cameo was certainly the major talking point in school the next day, and thus began the illustrious entertainment-hyphen-theatrical career of our very own “Singapore Boy”, perhaps nowadays better known for his “double confirm!” catchphrase.

Perhaps the 20 years is all the more astonishing considering the fact that Hossan still just as easily passes off as a 20-something year-old after all these years.

The set on stage was a simple one, with the baby grand being the main centrepiece, along with a brightly-coloured armchair on the right side of the stage.

One of Hossan’s strongest attributes as an entertainer, apart from his zany brand of humour, has always been his virtuosic pianistic talents, and he showcased them to full effect by starting off with the demanding first movement of Beethoven’s “Pathétique” Sonata in C Minor which, honestly, wasn’t quite what the crowd was expecting at a show like this, but it worked nonetheless.

I only wished he would have regaled us with the exceedingly lyrical Adagio Cantabile second movement as well, but then again we weren’t exactly here for “Hossan Leong: The Recital” either.

As expected, the evening was balanced well with a delightful mixture of stand-up routines as well as solo numbers and medleys.

This was less of “The Hossan Leong Show” (which is usually a revue of unrelated comical skits) than it was a retrospective on the life and times of Hossan the entertainer.

Jokes such as misheard lyrics and the comical standard of his Mandarin were well-woven into the narrative of his growing up years and early years in the industry.

Hossan obviously understood his target demographic well, and musical items such as the Barry Manilow medley and Mambo medley (complete with extremely precise actions) did well to please the audience no end.

There was also a rendition of the now infamous “We Live in Singapura” (based on the music of Billy Joel’s “We Didn’t Start the Fire”), with updated lyrics to boot!

Ever the francophile, Hossan also threw in a moving French song “L’Aigle Noir” as well.

One particular segment which I thought was brilliant was the “local musicals” medley, where he not only sang the notable songs from past local musicals such as “Chang & Eng”, “Beauty World”, “A Twist of Fate”, and “Forbidden City”, but also donned the relevant costumes and played the roles which he had sadly never had the chance to be cast in before.

And to top it all off, Hossan ended the thoroughly enjoyable evening with a lung-busting rendition of “Defying Gravity” from the musical “Wicked” which, if anything, should be lauded for his hitting of the high note “de-fy-ing” towards the end.

I didn’t think he’d hit it after more than 90 minutes of not-stop performing, but hit it he did.

And this might perhaps be analogous to his career on the whole as well, having come so far and hitting the highs after 20 long years, and being able to constantly defy the odds despite the many doubts and doubters along the way.

It’s a pity the run for this show only lasted four days, but I’m confident that those who had the opportunity to catch Hossan Leong in action would have been thoroughly entertained and left in no doubt as to why he’s been around the length of time he has, with absolutely no signs of abating.

Here’s to another 20 Leong years ahead.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. August 10, 2013 3:03 pm

    THANK YOU! I’m very touched! much love, Hossan


  1. HOSSAN-AH! Celebrating 20 Leong Years! | Double Confirm Productions

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