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Review 3

Leong Yuk Weng's Millennium Concert

22, 23 & 24 September 2000
at the Kreta Ayer People's Theatre

It was full-house on all three nights. Artistes well-known to Singaporeans who performed included Lee Seok Ken, Wong Wai Sun, Wong Chew Kuan, Ling Tung Meng. They all did their best. On the first night, the programme consisted of songs, on the second night there were four opera excerpts with two songs in between while on the third night, there were three cantonese musical pieces, two opera excerpts and several songs.

Leong has come to Singapore before, together with the Kwong Tung Troupe in which she is a member. This was her first own concert here.

Leong is an oustanding 'peng hou' singer (a singer singing the male role). Her deep alluring voice with its distinctive flavour has endeared her to fans all over the world. Initially she sang the 'Siu Meng Seng Style' but gradually she also included other styles. On the first night, besides the opera songs she also sang two pop songs. On the second night she performed four opera excerpts. However, I still like her solo opera songs best. One of them was 'chou cheung dou kuen hong' which she sang on the first night. Somehow I feel she sings this song better than other singers. Perhaps it is the way she puts herself in the song singing it with the emotions the character in the song was going through.

Her 'teacher', Wong Siew Mui, also sang on each of the three nights. Another singer, not familiar to Singaporeans, was Wong Wei Lan, a 'tai hou' singer. (A singer who is loud and bold, both in actions and singing, representing a patriotic general, a community heroic figure or such like persons.) Her slim fragile-looking figure belies her voice. On the first night, she sang 'Wu Song kills his sister-in-law' with Liu Yi. Although it was only a song, it was certainly also entertainment in 'sight'.

The backdrops were impressive, the electronic display of the wordings of the songs was well-synchronized and the lighting and sound system were almost perfect.

frannxis 26-09-2000