Tuesday, February 5, 2013

# Edmond Wong # Ip Ching

"Ip Man The Musical" Set for 2014 World Premier is Produced by a Fil-Australian

It's been 3 years since I've started blogging. If you've been following my blog, you'll notice that most of my entries are about theater, particularly shows produced by Filipinos. Aside from the rich natural resources and culture the Philippines have, Filipinos are naturally talented singers, dancers and actors.

A few years back when Hong Kong Disneyland opened, I think majority of the actors and tour guides which I saw there are Filipinos. They can even talk in Cantonese fluently and say their lines correctly which is really amazing!
This is me a few years back in Hong Kong Disneyland.
When I heard that during the press launch of Ip Man The Musical which was held in Singapore that a Filipino-Australian in the name of Robert Vicencio will be producing an international major musical, I felt that Filipinos are really amazing like the way I felt in Hong Kong Disneyland way back many years ago.

Robert Vicencio was originally onstage in the smash hit musical Miss Saigon at London’s West End and went around the world together with Ms. Wang Hongming who recently formed W Squared Live Entertainment Ltd.
Robert Vicencio (Photo from Toots Tolentino)
Wang Hongming (Photo from Toots Tolentino)

Based in Shanghai, W Squared Live Entertainment Ltd is managed by international & local industry experts focusing on both musical productions and entertainment solutions in the Asean region.

Ip Man The Musical is based on the globally successful movie trilogy Ip Man. This is also the first time an international major musical will chose to premiere its show in Singapore. It is also the world’s first Chinese concept-based musical with martial art elements strategically designed to target both the overseas and China Mainland markets. It also aims to perfect the combination of artistic and commercial elements into one theatrical production created for a global release.     

Grandmaster Ip Ching has joined the creative team of Ip Man The Musical in order to bring more significance to the musical’s production team as a whole, injecting a pure perspective of the Wing Chun martial arts philosophy straight from the son of the ‘The Father of Wing Chun’ into the musical’s development.   

Auditions for the show will be conducted by middle of this year and will travel through China, South Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan, THE PHILIPPINES (So get ready interested actors! =D) and other parts of Asia with the aims of identifying and discovering new musical talents.

Ip Man The Musical is also supported by the FLY Sound Company from Taiwan which serves as the production’s audio equipment strategic partner and Lateensail from Japan, who will provide all multimedia technologies and content, as the production’s multimedia strategic partner.

Robert Vicencio who holds strongly his enthusiasm for Chinese culture and passion of musicals and martial arts said during the presscon, "There is a great similarity between singing and martial arts, from the slow perfection of each move, to the breathing which is required to sustain long notes or powerful blows. Creating Ip Man the Musical finally brings to life this philosophy of mine and materializes it into a musical stage to be shared with the world. I truly believe it’s the right concept, right team, right story and more importantly the right time!”

Bey, Robert, Donnie Yen and Hongming (Photo from Toots Tolentino)
According to Grandmaster Ip Ching, "It will be the first time to promote Wing Chun using the medium of a musical. And we hope that the production can attract a wider range of audiences so they will become more knowledgeable about Wing Chun through this innovative production! I wish Ip Man the Musical great success in the future!" He continues to advise on Ip Man 3D, the third installment of the successful movie series produced by veteran Hong Kong movie producer, Raymond Wong and written by Edmond Wong. Both Wong's are not my relatives even though we all came from Hong Kong. They're obviously more creative than I am. I just love art and love to watch creativity unfold in front of my eyes. =D 

Incidentally, the Wong’s who are behind the movies have also been invited to join the creative team of Ip Man The Musical. Being a Wong too, I'm proud of them and hope I get watch this show *crossing my fingers.*

Raymond said during the presscon, "I am very pleased that Ip Man the movie has helped influence the creation of Ip Man the Musical. This will transcend to international theatrical stages, and create higher levels of  awareness, appreciation and audience appeal of the national treasure Wing Chun. I am confident that the musical will be more popular due to the fact that Kenji Kawai, who is Ip Man the Musical's co-composer, is also the musical director of all the Ip Man movies."     

Robert’s co-producer Ms. Wang Hongming who helped and participated in introducing original musicals into China thinks the development of Chinese concept musicals is very promising. She further explained, “The efforts of the team are bound to give an unforgettable experience to the audiences who like both musicals and martial arts globally. ”

Edmond, Bey, IpChing, Hongming, Robert and Raymond (Photo from Toots Tolentino)
In addition, Ip Man the Musical and its producers are strongly being looked at for support from the Singaporean government with its aim to create Singapore as a “West End” of Asia, with the producers finally deciding to premiere their show in Singapore, a first for that territory.

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