Review: A Cappella-la-la Double Bill

PUBLISHED : Monday, 09 February, 2015, 5:20pm
UPDATED : Monday, 09 February, 2015, 5:20pm

Yat Po Singers and Swire tenants

Reviewed: February 4

Homegrown troupe Yat Po Singers and talented amateurs working in Taikoo Shing put together a series of entertaining shows last week under the A capella-la-la programme held at ArtisTree, Swire Properties’ dedicated art space in Taikoo Place.

  Created by Yat Po, Hong Kong’s first professional a cappella choral theatre company, the two 30-minute shows premiered on Thursday combined stage and vocal techniques with contrasting effect.

The Way We Work, a tale of four stereotypical office workers who tackle a company assignment with differing mindsets, offered a humorous take on machinations in the workplace. Addio Turandot, based on Puccini’s final operatic work, explored the nature of love, pride and regret through the icy Princess Turandot.

  Both pieces of musical theatre illustrated the success of Project After 6¸Swire’s  tenant engagement programme which aims to bring out hidden performing talents among the people working in its properties at Cityplaza and Taikoo Place.

The four leading ladies of The Way We Work, Vanessa Choi, Una Pang, Fabien Yip and Mandy Tong, did a great job in their comedic roles and looked fabulously surreal in their pop art make-up. The dialogue and lyrics in Cantonese  inventively recreated familiar office frictions, with the voices of the Yat Po Singers serving as the only musical accompaniment.

  In Addio Turandot, the chorus was impressively powerful   but the highlight was undoubtedly Wang Shiyu in the lead role.   Not only did she show great vocal range, she convincingly portrayed both the wilful arrogance and pathos of her character.

An admirable show that stems from the commitment of tenants who rehearsed for months after work, and from Yat Po Singers, who provided the musical framework for each production as resident artists under the programme.