Prince Of Egypt – A Musical

The Wesley Methodist School KL (Int.) recently held a ‘Prince Of Egypt’ musical for three consecutive nights in late April. It was one of many events which the school is organizing to raise funds for the renewal of lease for the school land which will be expiring in a few years time. As it is for a good cause, we were only happy to support and bought tickets for the first night’s show.

‘Things Cannot Be As They Were’

The epic journey of Moses from slave to prince to deliverer which has been told and retold for centuries was beautifully and colourfully brought to life within a three hour production with the right balance of play, song and dance. It was highly entertaining, an admirable effort and performance from the entire team, they certainly did the school and themselves proud that night.

‘Let My People Go’

‘I Will Not Be The Weak Link’

It was literally a cast of hundreds with students from respective year’s and teachers forming the production team, contributing in one way or another their talent, expertise and time to make it a great showcase for the school. There were a few glitches here and there on the premiere night’s performance, but they were minor; and most importantly, everyone enjoyed the show.

‘When You Believe’ Duet

Soloists And Choir

‘When You Believe’ Duet

The Choir

Soloist And Choir

Song Of Freedom Dance

When You Believe Dance

When You Believe Dance 2

Audio And Visual Effects Artistry

Parting The Red Sea

The Pursuit

The Water Returns

The Finale

Curtain Call – Main Cast

Curtain Call – Main Cast

Curtain Call – Aaron And Hotep

Curtain Call – Jethro And The Three Sisters

Curtain Call – The Voice Of God And Narrator

Curtain Call – Supporting Cast

Curtain Call – Palace Maids

Curtain Call – Dancers

Curtain Call – Dancers

Curtain Call – Dancers

Curtain Call – Dancers

Principal’s Closing Address

Seated quite close to the stage and in the middle of a row, I would have distracted the audience attention and enjoyment of the show with my photography. During the intermission, I found an unobtrusive spot further back the hall, and shot some highlights of the musical from thereon with a zoom lens. Not ideal, but I think it worked quite well for some of the scenes and moments, which I have posted here.

All photos: Fujifilm X-E2 with XF 55-200mm

Shooting A Group Gymnastics Competition

Slave To The Rhythm

Attended a gymnastics competition last weekend, the Total Gym International Gymnastics Tournament 2017 (6th Edition).  I was there on Day 2 of the competition, where my daughter and her team took part in the team competition. Unfortunately, her team did not win any medals on the day, but they certainly put up a worthy and gutsy performance, and had fun and exposure participating in an international event.

A Roaring Performance

From my experience shooting a number of these events at different venues, a key aspect I find in getting good shots of the gymnasts is finding suitable spots, getting sufficiently close and planning the shots to minimise any background clutter (e.g. unnecessary details, awkward line formations, bright light sources, etc.) which distracts the viewer from the main subject of interest – the gymnasts.

Waiting For The Cue

Another equally challenging aspect, at least for me anyway, is photographing the gymnasts when they are going about their routines with a camera which is ‘slow’ to acquire focus when the action picks up (GAS for X-T2 🙂 ); but then again, if it’s easy, then where is the sense of achievement and satisfaction of getting the shot ;). Preempting a routine’s ‘sweet spot’s, manually pre-focusing on them, and wait for the action to ‘land’ works wonders at times.

Cats

That’s how I went about getting some of the shots posted here of the competitors on the day, working the venue, understanding and working within the limitations of my gear and doses of luck :). Hope you enjoy the selection, the gymnasts certainly trained hard and gave their best in the spirit of the sport and competition, and did themselves, their team, coaches, parents and country proud, surely.

A Picture Of Concentration

Poise

Disco

Ring Balance 1

Ring Balance 2

Passe Balance

March

Pulling It Together

Portrait

Line Dancing?

Out Of Time?

Uniformity 1

Veiled

Hooped

Elegance

Cute

Uniformity 2

Ending Ovation

I learned something new on the day, Aesthetic Group Gymnastics, which was included to the competition for the first time. Aesthetic Group Gymnastics is about prominent and continuous body movement in larger teams, apparatus are not used, and stress more on physical qualities such as flexibility, balance, speed, strength, coordination and sense of rhythm where movements of the body are emphasized in the flow, expressive and aesthetic appeal.

A routine typically encompasses versatile and varied body movements, such as body waves and swings, balances and pivots, jumps and leaps, dance steps, and lifts, with the team striving for by uniformity and simultaneity which characterizes a good performance.

All photos: Fujifilm X-E2 with XF 55-200 mm

The Walk Of Faith

The Sifu At Ampang Kau Ong Yah Temple Leading The Walk Of Faith

The Nine Emperor Gods Festival is an annual 9-day Taoist event celebrating the return from heaven to earth the nine emperor deities. Celebrations commence on the eve of the 9th moon Chinese lunar calendar (typically October timeframe) with an elaborate ceremony of rituals to invoke and welcome the deities. It reaches its climax on the 9th day with the famous charcoal fire walking ceremony where Taoist priests, led by the Sifu (Master) lead devotees (devotees need to observe a 9-day long prayer and rituals) to walk across a raging fire and embering charcoal mound to clean and and ward themselves off evil or bad influences, to usher in good luck, affirm their belief and faith in their Nine Emperor Gods before the celebrations wind down and come to a close the following day.

Well, the eve of the 9th moon Chinese lunar calendar falls on the 30th September this year and as I write, activities and rituals are already in full swing over at the packed Ampang Kau Ong Yah Temple to welcome the return from heaven to earth the nine emperor deities. A vibrant and dramatic celebration is expected, as always; an enlightening and memorable experience is assured, regardless you are visiting to partake in the celebrations or to spectate and soak in its festivity and atmosphere. I plan to visit the temple to cover the event on a number of days in the following 9-day celebration period to further document special moments of this unique and absorbing celebration. Here’s hoping the gods will be kind again this year with some divine intervention to my photography :).

Some earlier posts of mine on the Nine Emperor Gods Festival can be found here …

https://kenandagnesphotoworks.wordpress.com/2014/10/10/nine-emperor-gods-festival/

https://kenandagnesphotoworks.wordpress.com/2014/11/06/nine-emperor-gods-festival-part-2/

Photo: Fujifilm X-E2 with XF 55-200 mm