Traditional language teaching was given a new spin at a fun learning carnival at the Central Library this week. Gone were grammar rules and tedious texts, and in their place were jazz, stand-up comedy, caricatures and drama skits, turning the library's lecture theatre into a lively place. Hosting the innovative approach to language teaching was Dream Language Studio, set up five years ago. The studio specialises in incorporating fun elements into their English classes and sends native speakers into local classrooms to spice up language learning. Comedians and singers performed with the Larry Hammond Band to liven up the usually solemn lecture theatre. TVB artist and theatre performer Corinna Chamberlain sang a love ballad in Cantonese, winning applause from the audience of almost 200 students. Chamberlain said the key to learning a foreign language was to have fun. 'All my friends speak Chinese. We speak in Chinese together. When you are dancing, singing in a foreign language and having fun, you don't realise you are learning, but you pick up the language.' Another star of the night was Chip Tsao, a commentator, columnist and radio host, who wowed the audience with his trademark wisecracks. His sidesplitting analogy of the recent milk scandal and English learning had the audience in stitches. 'Taking the milk powder is like local English learning with all those textbooks and grammar rules,' he said. 'Kids in Hong Kong are forced to learn it. Learning with native speakers in a much more theatrical and lively way is like breastfeeding. You get all the nutrients. Forget the rules and embrace the language. The key is to get yourself immersed in it.' Mr Tsao recently joined the studio as an adviser. Introducing the performances with humour was the master of ceremonies, David Swanston, known as Swanny in theatrical circles. The former primary English teacher said the key to learning was for youngsters to study languages with emotion and energy. 'When I was a native-English-speaking teacher, students' learning materials were terrible,' he said. 'Teachers should introduce drama into classrooms and make learning English a physical experience.'