Thursday, May 23

Jessie Chung performs to full house in ‘Music Box’


Chung (left) in a scene during the play which included a realistic LED background.

KUCHING: It was a full house at the 700-seater Kenyalang Theatre here as members of the public gathered to watch the ‘Music Box’ stage play on Saturday, starring Kuchingite Jessie Chung as lead actress.

Produced by Neil McLean and incorporating avant-garde theatre techniques and technology, Music Box has so far played to 14

sold-out shows, with each receiving an overwhelmingly positive audience response for its poignant tale.

To give the audience an immersive visual experience, the director employed brand new techniques, including an LED backdrop to accentuate the mood for each scene and a magnificent soundtrack.

His hope was for the audience to enjoy the stage play as if it were a movie with elements of additional sensory perceptions, and through that, achieve the pinnacle of next-gen theatrical arts.

The two-hour and 45-minute play, presented entirely in English, is a beautifully constructed stage play that brings to surface the deepest mentalities and sentiments of its characters while, at the same time, filling the air with a poetic sense of elegance and love.

Inspired by a true story in 18th-century England, it recounts a teenage girl’s experience with romance, friendship, and family. Music Box also incorporates Chung’s life journey and elements drawn from three of her relationships.

The cast of Music Box consists of 14 actors and actresses, including Marcus Choot and Tylor Chen, who also starred as male leads in the stage play Moonlight. Newcomer Jeffrey Beh, who appeared in the music video ‘Last Teardrop’, became the star of the show with his muscular build and charismatic personality.

In the show, Chung plays the role of a daughter, sister, friend, lover, and singer, switching between different identities and moods. Her emotions rise and fall according to the plot.

In one challenging scene, she has to display a gamut of emotions within a short period of time, including happiness, anger, panic, confusion, madness, sadness, and pain, making it an impressive scene to watch.

Due to the director’s strict requirements, punches, kicks, slaps and kisses must be performed authentically, giving the actors a real challenge.

After the curtain call, Datin Sri Tsai Deng Lan Hua and Dato Sylvia Chai presented a bouquet of flowers to Chung who, along with the other actors, threw heart-shaped pillows and boomerangs with souvenirs attached into the crowd.

To-date, the organiser has garnered over 1,000 video reviews from the audience, receiving an overwhelming collection of positive reviews including from celebrities and artistes. Fans from across the world, including the United States, China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, South Korea, Japan, Thailand, and Malaysia came to witness the spectacular show.

Music Box is a fundraising event for cancer patients; Jessie Chung and the rest of the cast and crew all perform free-of-charge for the cause of philanthropy.

After the show in Kuching, Music Box will be shown in Taipei, Taiwan at Clapper Studio next Saturday (March 31); Symphony Theatre Shah Alam on April 7, and JKKN Auditorium Kota Kinabalu on April 14.

For more information, call 016-2634399.