Review: SRT’s Fantastic Mr Fox in Mandarin了不起的狐狸爸爸

Review

SRT’s The Little Company production does not disappoint and true enough it was truly enjoyable reproduction of Roald Dahl’s Fantastic Mr Fox and plus point it was all in Mandarin – I wouldn’t complain as the kids had one full hour of Mandarin and for me to brush on some Mandarin words as well (I wish there are more of such Mandarin productions for kids in Singapore).

I love it from the get-go, as the audience are already familiar with character as Mr Fox and his family are all around the theatre interacting with children in the audience before the show starts. They were taught some “digging” actions used by underground animals like mole, badger, rabbit etc to be used throughout the show. It was a lot of “digging” to be done to escape from the clutches of the evil farmers. I love that it was there were lots of interactions with the children in the audience as well. You can see a digging action video in my IG story.

photo credit: SRT

photo credit: SRT

True to the story (even to the rats in the cellar, which didn’t leave an impression on me when I read the book), this production did not deviate from original classic storyline by Roald Dahl with clear character development of the three farmers with some slap stick comedy much to the delight of the children in the audience. There were also many tender moments between Mr and Mrs Fox and with their kids.

photo credit: SRT

Boasting a cast of regulars like Ric Liu and Sugie Phua, and my first time watching Vester Ng as the unforgettable Mr Fox, with a total of 6 performers playing 10 characters all with clear diction and powerful vocals.


This production also testing new limits with stage props that are beyond the stage perimeter ie a roast chicken in a middle of the theatre! A first in my years of watching TLC productions.

photo credit: SRT

There is also a moral dilemma being surfaced as Mr Fox went around plundering from the farmers’ produce and Mr Badger reminded him that it was not right to steal from others. However, the predicaments that the animals were in were created by the farmers and hence Mr Fox is doing what he can to protect and feed his family. This is a good point to discuss with the kids after the show of what is the moral of the story and what is wrong and right which seems blurred while we cheered whenever Mr Fox “steals” to survive.


If there is anything to critic perhaps being a regular to TLC productions I expected more music, song and dance. There were some but not as much as I would expect from a typical TLC productions, but that doesn’t take away this very wholesome and interactive performance where they spent more time in narrating (done by Mr Badger) the storyline in 1 short hour.

Our favourite theatre!

This is a very good production to introduce the younger ones to Roald Dahl’s classics and for the older ones, to see one of their favourite stories come to live on stage and in a different language too! This is one for Roald Dahl’s fans and also to catch one of the rare Mandarin children productions in Singapore (SRT TLC only does one a year).

Media invite

Before even going through any details, or video or past reviews of the English production, I already know it is going to be a sell-out due to two very important elements that we parents love – Roald Dahl and Mandarin!

Truth to be told, I didn’t grow up with Roald Dahl’s books but my kids did and I found his stories are just in a league of its own, so witty and so much morale to the story. We absolutely loved reading and watching recent Matilda the Musical.

The Little Company’s production of Roald Dahl’s Fantastic Mr Fox in 2012 was a huge hit with parents, teachers and children.

This July, The Little Company is excited to present Fantastic Mr Fox in Mandarin!

Fantastic Mr Fox is a classic tale of goodies and baddies. It is an inspiring story about the brave and clever Mr Fox who, with the help of his family and friends, outsmarts three farmers’ nasty schemes in order to provide food for the animal community.

The farmers Boggis, Bunce and Bean have been digging up the animals’ home, trying to get Mr Fox by any means possible. Trapped underground, Mr Fox and his family and friends are starving, leaving Mr Fox with no choice but to devise a plan to find food for everyone to survive.

Filled with humour and packed with action, this is a fantastic show to be enjoyed by children of all ages.

Fantastic Mr Fox in Mandarin了不起的狐狸爸爸

Date: Wed, 31 Jul – Sun, 8 Sep 2019

Weekdays: 10am
Weekends & 12 Aug: 11am & 2pm
 9 Aug, 17 Aug, 25 Aug & 8 Sep : 11am

Venue: KC Arts Centre – Home of SRT

Ticket Pricing(Excludes Booking Fee)

Weekdays 
Standard: S$29, S$26

Family Package of 4: 
Cat 1: S$98 
Cat 1 tickets (with TLC CD Vol.2): S$110  

Weekends & Public Holidays
Standard: S$49, S$39, S$36

For online booking, click here

Do check list of promotions on the same website for discounts and savings. The last I check, the seats are running quite low especially on weekends.


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Review: Disney’s Aladdin the hit Broadway musical (the first and only Asian stop)

Review

I learned during the media call took Chantal Prudhomme from Base Entertainment Asia 2 years to bring Aladdin the hit Broadway musical to Singapore and this will be its only Asian stop. Aladdin will run for 6 weeks and ends 1 Sept.

Featuring a very strong and world class cast from mainly Australia, US and Canada, their diction were crystal clear that I could catch most of the jokes and laugh my hearts out, their singing voices and choreography were nothing short of world. With a massive set similar in set to that touring the US, no expenses were spared down to the embellishment on their costumes, or the tassels on the throne.

Given that a majority would have as recently watched the Aladdin the movie, one might wondered what is in there for them to catch Aladdin live of stage. You may have have the same story line that we know so well and the songs from the movie that many of us know by heart but the energy, the dancing, the magic tricks, the costumes, the cast, the beautiful sets are something you can’t experience from watching it at a cinema.

The audience were instanteously brought into the city of AGRABAH through the opening act – Arabian Nights . There was a beautiful solo by Graeme Isaako who plays Aladdin – Proud of Your boy (which was written for the movie but unfortunately eliminated), a sweet rendition of A Million Miles Away by Graeme and Shubshri Kandiah who plays Jasmine a totally new song written by Alan Menken especially for this musical production) before bringing the house down with Friend Like Me to end Act 1. The whole entire sequence in the Cave of Wonders and Friend Like Me was just amazing, I lost count the number of dance genres that were being showcased , the number of costume changes , and the pyrotechnics! I don’t want to give it out too much , I would just say I will pay to just watch this segment, and you have to watch it for yourself. The snippet of Friend Like Me shared below was just like 1/10 of the whole entire segment!

Act 2 opens with a bang with Prince Ali with an amazing 126 costume changes! Before long, the entire stage darkened and turned into a starry night to the tune of A Whole New World , I got goosebumps just listening to this and of course at the same time trying to figure out how the magic carpet flies. There was a comical sword fighting sequence with High Adventure where I saw some excellent choreography performed the 3 talented trio of Aladdin’s sidekicks – Babkak, Omar and Kassim.

The chemistry between Jafar and Iago (his parrot sidekick) were as good as the chemistry between Aladdin and the Genie, and as Patrick Brown who plays Jafar, it is really awfully hard being evil and yet funny, but he just did that!

I can’t believe I have not talked about Gareth Jacobs who plays the Genie. I had the opportunity to hear him speak during the media call, I already felt his immense humour and showmanship during the interview. I was blown away every minutes that he was on stage. He could even have his own touring show. He is so funny, flamboyant and he practically own the stage whenever he is on.

Coming from the words of the Genie, we all loved Happy Ending, I am sure everyone left the theatre feeling fuzzy, warm and happy.

It was one magical night for my family, especially for my kids who fell in love with Aladdin after watching the movie very recently, and to see it all come to live on a massive stage production, they felt the magic all over again but it felt more real as it was performed directly in front of their eyes! Something just cant be replicated in the movie! No amount of words can describe what we just experienced – you just have to just watch it yourself!


Media Invite

Ain’t July the best month of this year, I know I am super biased as it is my birthday month! Fresh from watching Aladdin the movie, comes the theatre production of Disney’s Aladdin brought to you by Base Entertainment. The theatre production couldn’t come at a better timing, my kids are all singing A Whole New World after catching the movie during the school holidays.

I vividly remembered when I first watched the award winning animation some 20 plus years ago as a young girl probably a little older than big J, and I was mesmerised, till today I can sing A Whole New World without missing a lyric. Its so surreal the Disney magic now rubs off on my own kids after catching the 2019’s remake of Aladdin on the big screen last week.

From the producer of The Lion King (one of the best productions ever, read my previous review) , the beloved story of Aladdin comes to life in this spectacular new musical. Based on the Academy Award®- winning animated film, Aladdin made its world premiere to critical acclaim at Broadway’s New Amsterdam Theatre on March 20th, 2014.

It quickly established itself as one of the biggest new blockbusters in recent years, breaking 14 New Amsterdam Theatre house records and welcoming close to 10 million people worldwide. This spectacular production boasts a cast of 34 and a staggering 337 glittering costumes, which feature 1,225 different fabrics, 712 different styles of beads and almost 500,000 Swarovski crystals. 40 tonnes of exotic flying scenery and 60 tonnes of automation and staging will be transferred to Singapore in more than 30, 40’ sea containers to recreate the fantasy city of Agrabah including the colourful marketplace, the lush palace of the Sultan and his princess daughter Jasmine and the legendary Cave of Wonders. The talented principal cast features Gareth Jacobs in the role of the Genie, Graeme Isaako as Aladdin and Shubshri Kandiah as Jasmine

Featuring all the songs from the classic Academy award winning film, including “Friend like Me”, “A Whole New World” and “Arabian Nights”, prepare to experience the unmissable theatrical magic that is Aladdin.

photo credit: Base Entertainment

photo credit: Base Entertainment
photo credit: Base Entertainment
photo credit: Base Entertainment

This production will play its first and only Asian stop at Sands Theatre. For all those growing up watching Disney animations, and for the kids who absolutely loved Aladdin, the Genie and Princess Jasmine or even Abu, this is a must-watch!

Aladdin

Season: Sun, 21 Jul – Sun, 1 Sep 2019

Tue – Fri: 7.30pm
Sat: 2pm & 7.30pm
Sun: 1pm & 6.30pm (Friday 9 Aug performance will be a matinee at 2pm.)

Venue: Sands Theatre at Marina Bay Sands

Ticket price: From SGD 68 onwards *exclude SGD 4 booking fee

Booking online at Sistic and Marina Bay Sands.


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Review: Kurios – Cabinet of Curiosities opens 5th July (my birthday!)

Media invite

Review

It was a very uneventful day even though it was my birthday as I didn’t take leave, the typical Friday routine of going to work and sending kids for class, then working from a cafe while awaiting the kids to finish class. Thankfully for Kurios – Cabinet of Curiosities, it turned my uneventful birthday to one of my most memorable birthday ever and with my whole fam bam (thank you to the wonderful people who brought Kurios to Singapore)

my best birthday celebration in recent years! all thanks to Kurios

Having watched two other Cirque du Soleil and coming from such a well-known circus establishment, I have very high hopes, a tad unfair as compared to other circus performances which do not have such lustrous background and history. I am glad to say Kurios has exceeded my expectation of the limit of circus performances.

Especially for a first timer like daddy A, he has not watched any Cirque du Soleil before or any circus for that matter (he was overseas when we caught the last year’s circus which came to Singapore) so he is a total circus newbie! Perhaps, I should let him have a go from the view of a circus newbie for the benefit of people who will be catching the circus or Cirque du Soleil for the very first time, before I gave my own verdict being one who has watched countless circuses (plus past 2 Cirque du Soleil) in the past years.

Daddy A’s review – a first time circus experience!

Daddy A has followed me/ the family to several live stage performances more as a companion than truly enjoying such show (he slept through some parts of Evita the Musical – true story). First time, he truly enjoyed watching a live performance. It was exhilarating watching live circus performances, he felt an adrenaline rush, heart beat pumping , certain part of the acts, he was literally sitting on the edge of his seat, in anticipation of what the performers will attempt next.

His childhood stereotype of lion jumping over firehoops, daredevils stunts , monkey juggling were all changed after watching Kurios as this is the future of circus, Kurios and Cirque du Soleil has reinvented the circus for a first time newbie. The roller coaster emotion is unlike anything he has felt before watching a live performance. He applauded an amazing and well-rounded performance from start to finish. Every person from the youn to old should catch this – an entertainment and night to remember for the family! Personally, I think and this will be a double-edge sword as I can’t think of any other circus acts will be paled in comparison to his virgin circus experience.

My review – having watching 2 past Cirque du Soleil and many others

Having watched two other Cirque du Soleil, Totem and Kooza and coming from such a well-known establishment which reinvented circus performances from the traditional circus that we know of, I have very high hopes, a tad unfair as compared to other circus performances which do not have such lustrous background and history as Cirque.

I had my excitement built up since the big top raising on 15 June, which i had to miss it as I was not in town. I love it whenever the circus is in town, the sheer sight the big top in town really makes me all excited even before watching the actual performance stemming from my childhood memories whenever my parents brought me to watch the circuses that came to town.

The overall set and costumes were in a league of its own clearly depicting
19th century, with train and airplane that is a replica of what we would see in the same era. For the entire duration, the audience were transported to an old yet magical and mysterious era. There are such details to the props, costumes and even the music soundtracks to set the overall theme and story even before the actual circus acts unveil. ( I am listening to the soundtrack as I am doing this post).

photo credit: Kurios
photo credit: Kurios
photo credit: Kurios

Those who were yearning for the typical circus acts like juggling, balancing, clowns, contortionists, aerial acts, Kurios does not disappoint. What exceeded my expectations and wow-ed me (even being regular circus patron) is when the performers rethink and push their limit beyond the conventional juggling and balancing. Four particular acts (shown below) which are typically not the most impressive in a circus partly as they are not as fast-paced was totally improvised to give regular circus patrons like me an entirely new experience. Everything was put beyond their limits and literally brought up to the sky. There is an aerial component in every of their juggling and balancing acts.

Balancing in the air
Juggling in the air
this particular act without giving away too many spoilers, this is an total reinvention of circus balancing act and making use the entire big top from ground to top!
cycling in the air

A special mention to a very Rima Hadchiti, the artist who plays Mini Lili is 3.3 feet tall and weighs 41 pounds. She is one of the 10 smallest people in the world. How she was kept in the costume of one of the performers and suddenly pop up, I guess that is the magic of circus! You have to watch it yourself to believe it!

Some of the kids favourites were the contortionists mimicing the fluidity of sea creatures, Acro net and Banquine.

Photo credit: Kurios
Acro net
Banquine

If I am forced to choose a personal favourite act of all the acts, (though it will be a difficult choice), it would the the aerial acrobats, they are as if dancing in air, very beautiful and surreal. The simplicity of it all – two performers and their aerial straps, I was truly mesmerised.

photo credit: Kurios

There were of course some segments were by the clowns come to entertain – an invisible circus which was entertaining , but there was one segment whereby a member of the audience invited to stage, I couldn’t quite grasp the concept and message, but that does not take away the entire well-rounded performance from start to finish.

Kurios – Cabinet of Curiosities is true to its name, a cabinet full of surprises, fueling imagination of the young ones, and for the older and more mature audience, making them rethink of the impossible and reinventing the convention! I would say this is one for the entire family, my 4 year old -sat through the entire 2 hours and 15 minutes performance (there is a 25 minutes intermission) and even gave a standing ovation at the very end! I was very lucky to have watched the opening show which fell on my birthday making my birthday extra memorable, so if there is any special occasion in the family, do make Kurios as part of your celebration! It was one of my most memorable birthday celebrations!

Initial post

If you have been following my blog for the past few years, you would have known my affinity for the circus shows stemming from my childhood experiences of my parents bringing me and my brother whenever circus came to town. Sometimes, my parents will bring us all the way to Genting Highlands to watch magic shows too!

Here are my cuties pies in the last 2 Cirque du Soleil that came to town – Kooza and Totem the past years.

Cirque du Soleil is back in Singapore with a brand new show for the first time in Singapore called KURIOSCabinet of Curiosities .

KURIOS will premiere under a brand-new white-and-grey Big Top from 5 July 2019 on Bayfront Avenue, next to Marina Bay Sands . Written and directed by Michel Laprise, KURIOS – Cabinet of Curiosities,
Kurios celebrates the greatest inventions of the 19th century, as audience members are transported into the Curio Cabinet of an ambitious inventor who defies the laws of time, space and dimensions in order to reinvent everything around him. Suddenly, the visible become invisible, perspectives are transformed, and the world is turned upside down.

Since its debut, critics across North America and Japan have been raving about KURIOS – Cabinet of Curiosities. In an alternate yet familiar past, in a place where wonders abound for those who trust their imagination, a scientist (“The Seeker”) is convinced that there exists a hidden world – a place where the craziest ideas and the grandest dreams await. Out of his curio cabinet steps an international cast of 47 artists from 17 countries, a collection of otherworldly characters made up of world-class gymnasts, acrobats, contortionists, hand-puppeteers, yo-yo wizards, clowns, actors and musicians. Together they turn the Seeker’s steampunk world upside-down as they are guided by an energetic gypsy jazz, electro swing soundtrack.

Some Curious Facts about KURIOS….

  • To make the Accordion Man’s attire, the costume-maker spent an entire week sewing inside the costume
  • Rima Hadchiti, the artist who plays Mini Lili is 3.3 feet tall and weighs 41 pounds. She is one of the 10 smallest people in the world
  • The mechanical hand weighs 750 pounds and measures 15 feet by 6.8 feet
  • More than a hundred costumes were created to dress the cast of KURIOS
  • There are 426 props in the show, the most of any production in Cirque du Soleil’s history
  • The 122 tour members come from 18 23 different countries. Some have been touring with Cirque du Soleil for more than 15 years
  • This is the first time that Cirque du Soleil presents a welcoming act on top of the big top before the show starts. When weather permits, 3 artists climb up the big top and greet the guests from above while playing music and acting. Guests get a taste of the KURIOS experience as soon as they enter the site
  • It took the team of props makers approximately 250 hours to build Mr. Microcosmos’ round belly
  • All performers are responsible for applying their own make-up every show, which can take them between 40 minutes and two hours

KURIOS – Cabinet of Curiosities by Cirque du Soleil

Season: From 5 July – 4 August 2019

Venue:  Under the grey and white Big Top on Bayfront Avenue beside Marina Bay Sands (the big top will be going up 15 June)

PERFORMANCE TIMES:                
Tuesday – Friday: 8:00pm
Saturday: 4:30pm and 8:00pm
Sunday:  1:30pm and 5.00pm

TICKET PRICE: From $95 through SISTIC

* Excludes the booking fee of SGD$4 per ticket


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Kiztopia, the largest in-mall edutainment playground in Singapore opens on 15 June

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We were the lucky kids to get preview Kiztopia before it opens to public on 15 June. Spanning over 18,000 sq feet and 18 play zones, you can spend endless hours of fun and learning there. Building on its motto, “Play to Learn , Learn through Play, the fun utopia has 18 play zones that comes with its own learning objectives, as well as its own curated line-up of educational programme (from Aug onwards) to further supplement the educational value of every child’s time in the park (targeted from ages 1 to 12).

Let me give you a pictorial overview of the latest and biggest in-mall edutainment playground in Singapore ending with a quick video tour of the massive playground as we explore Kiztopia last Saturday so that you can plan your visit better. I definitely encourage you to minimumly do 3 hours (that’s how long we were there).

Cosmic space which is the play structure with 5 sets of slides and many different climbing structure to expend the kids’ endless energy and where I quickly lost them. They are also of the age when they can go in without me having to climb it!

Trampio includes 3 trampolines for kids of all ages, perfect for kids who love trampoline parks.

Ninja warrior is perfect for the kids who enjoy a bit of challenge in their climbing and obstacle courses.

Mojo Zone, I especially loved this play one featuring a super huge ball pit and 2 slides and also an AR wall sewn below. There are 2 banana boats for lots of pretend play, my kids imagine they were out in the sea!

In the same area is AR wall where you use to balls to hit the targets. Just be careful as the ball after hitting the wall will hit back at you!

Alley Oop Mark

Using a basketball to hit the “hoop” projected on the wall, my husband and I had a try and we worked out a sweat quite easily.

Raby’s Pit is the Hinoki bead area aka beach area with a space shuttle in the middle. You can still smell the Hinoki beads!

Sprite is another ball pit targeted at the younger ones but my kids also had a wild time here!

Chug Eli is the motorised train especially appealing for the little ones just like in the amusement park!

Bouncy Tiger is a bouncy castle structure next to the Chug Eli, I do not know of any kids who doesn’t like the bouncy castle.

Raby’s Mart is a pretend play supermarket complete with groceries, fruits, vegetable etc ,in fact it’s big C’s favourite activity of them all. If I ever I want to look for her, she is the cashier at the mart.

Tina’s Snip is a pretend play corner full of costume! You can actually wear it out around Kiztopia and be any super hero or princess of your choice! You must have seen my boys in their super hero costumes in some of the other parts of Kiztopia.

Pio Drift, a racing car track complete with petrol station, small C was always found filling up the petrol at the gas station! No prizes for guessing small C’S favourite playzone.

Bell’s Cuisine, another of the kids’ favourite, kitchen cum bakery cum restaurant pretend play area. I must say the bakery items seen in the right of the photo below were all so real and they smells like the real thing too!

Hero Square or the centre stage host another AR wall and is the area for mascot appearances and shows.

Chi Chi’s Art and Honey Notes, we didn’t get to explore this as it was tugged at the end which calls for a return visit as big J has not visited Kiztopia too!

Facilities

Starlite party room is a very spacious party and function room for birthday parties, baby showers etc.

The cafe will serving up healthy meals once Kiztopia officially opens on 15 June with a massive seating area overlooking the entrance area of Marina Square.

Stroller area and also locker facilities are also provided at the entrance.

Gift shop where you can buy their original created characters’ plushies or some souvenirs!

It is massive, sorry for using this word so many times through out the review but I can’t find a more appropriate word. You will be surprised to learn more about your child like how I learn how much my girl loves pretend play at the supermarket and having many “customers” and my boys are mega huge fans of costume and pretending to be super heroes!

Kiztopia opens this Saturday 15 June which means you have 2 more weeks of the June holiday to check it out especially with our erratic Singapore weather.. Indoors are the best bet. What can I say you lucky kids in Singapore! You don’t have to travel abroad to make memories during the school holidays.

Enjoy their pre-opening promotion online till 14 June.

Price:

Single-entrance tickets range from $28 (1 hour of play), to $38 (3 hours) to $48 (unlimited) which is includes 1 child and 1 adult with additional options for 15-visit and annual passes.

Additional adults are $8 each. Babies under 12 months enter for free with a paying child and accompanying adult.

Opening Hours:
Sunday to Thursday, 10am to 9pm; Friday & Saturday, 10am to 10pm.

Kiztopia, #01-09 Marina Square, 6 Raffles Boulevard, Singapore 039594,

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Discovery camp: Lego Robotic (Level 1) (with 15% discount code)

I have always love that my kids attend non-academic camps during their school breaks – partly to make use of their holidays more purposely and also try new area of interests that we hardly have time to indulge during normal school terms. However that said, it takes a lot of commitment to send and fetch them for the week-long camp especially full time working parents like myself.

Firstly, I need to find a full week that they can attend with no disruptions, then a location where can I send and fetch and lastly the cost must be affordable. What attracted me to Discovery Camp is its very CENTRAL location-United Square (Using the Lorna Whiston facility at United Square which is a stone throw away from my office was a mega-plus point for me , so I can send and fetch quite easily) and St Joseph International.

They also allow early drop off at 8.30am so that parents can drop off before going to work. The 3pm may prove to bit of a challenge but with a late lunch arrangement and a flexi work arrangement for that week, I could schedule my work to pick her at 3pm. (For some of the camps, they also offer private bus service at additional cost).

With her elder brother away in China with the primary school camp in the first week of the June holidays, I am glad I managed to find an interesting camp to fill big C’s time on the first week of June school holidays else she will be home alone with her grandparents. I am glad the camps at Discovery Camps start as early as local school holidays till end July to accomodate both local and international school kids.

The idea was for big C to try something non-academic and something she wouldn’t have time to try during regular school terms and I thought it’s good for a girl to dabble in a bit of STEM. It was not surprising that the class was 80% boys being Lego and robotic but I think she will enjoy this of a change.

The price is an all inclusive price which included a t shirt and also snack and lunch. Lunch is provided from Michelin Chef Emmanuel Stroobant’s kitchen.

Day 1

On the first day, they started out by assembling their own robot named Milo and did some simple programming using Lego Wedo 2.0. You can have a better idea of what the kids will be learning throught their sample Lego Robotics timetable here. Laptops are also provided to the kids.

Day 2 to 4

Continuing from their MILO model, they learn the different sensors – tilt, motion etc. After the initial model, they went on to make a race car, a robotic frog, a robotic bee and a dump truck. I loved how cleverly they weave the frog life cycle while building the Lego model. They also learn how bees help in plant’s reproduction. So it’s not just all about fixing Lego blocks and programming but a bit of life science as well.

Day 5

The highlight of the camp was build and program an earth quake simulator which my girl has been looking forward most of the week.

A report of their lessons was sent to me on the following week outlining what the kids had learnt. They also indicator of her ability to work in a group, take instruction, work in a team etc. Big C was better that constructing the Lego than programming which is understandable as it’s her first time dabbling in some form of programming.

A small part of me is relieved that I no longer need to send and fetch every day but super glad that big C got a taster session and ignite her interest in STEM especially when science becomes a mandatory subject next year at primary 3.

There is 3 more weeks for local school holidays to fill, do check Discovery Camp and their wide range of camps from coding, art classes, actor studio and multi activity camps. I am sure you will be able to find one suitable for your kids.

Quote DC15 (15%) for 15% any Discovery Camps.

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Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post. No monetary compensation was received. All opinions are my own.
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Review: Act3i Festival featuring Aesopica

The June holiday programme from Act3 International always has a soft spot in my heart. Since Big J’s time as a pre schooler, we had participate year after year until they got too old (as the max age is 8). We did Jelly Wobble, Sweet and Wonderland of Toys since 2014 and was very disappointed that they did not have a similar programme last year.

I love always love the camps that Act 3 International during the holidays but I am unable to commit for a 5 day drama camp being a FTWM. So this is really good alternative to expose my kids for some speech and  drama workshop and simply for some holiday fun for just one morning/afternoon during the June school holidays.

It’s a good 2.5 hours of a mixture of performance, workshop participation and ending with a grand finale which the parents can watch the kids performed.

Weaving the most famous fables from Aesop, after watching the initial 30 minutes performance featuring tales such as the lion and the mouse, the tortoise and the hare, the ant and the grasshopper, the kids take turns participating in two very special 30 minute workshops with drama, music and movement.

I has my apprehension as its probably one for the first drop off session for small C but my fears were unfounded. He was so engrossed and tickled by the performance that he wanted to be part of the cast immediately after the performance. 

This year’s workshop was held at Asian Civilization Museum which is a new location from previous years.

The venue was decorated so beautifully by 5 local artists to depict all the elements in the Aesop fables and provided a perfect setting for the workshop /performance.

Once the kids and parents were all seated, we were entertained by a 30 minutes of drama, song and dance of Aesop fables – the lion and the mouse, the ant and the grasshopper to name a few. 

I left the kids after the end of the 30-minute performance as me and big J has some mother and son time. The younger boys were left behind with the cast and facilitators to prepare for their workshop and to put up a finale performance. And boy did they put up an awesome performance! You can watch snippets of my little lions in the two videos below. 

I can’t rave enough out this immersive workshop and I am very biased as I have been to several past installments. Don’t hear it from me as small J even requested to be back for the same show! For younger kids and other shows from Act3i Festival, do visit their website.

Dates:
June 1 to June 9, 2019

Times:
10:00am to 12:30pm
3:00pm to 5:30pm on weekends only

Venue:
River Room
Asian Civilisations Museum
1 Empress Place
Singapore 179555

This is a 2.5-hour drop-off programme with no intermission.

Parents are welcome to come back and join the children in their parade and performance for the last 25 minutes of the session.

For booking , please use this link


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Review: The Phantom of the Opera 2019

Media invite

My review

I was so sad when I couldn’t make it for the media call and premiere which including a masquerade theme last week due to overseas work travel but I finally managed to catch it on Labour Day instead. I have watched the movie and the previous musical when it was in Singapore in 2013. Here are my 3 reasons why first timers or even repeats like me should catch this before they leave. However, I wouldn’t recommend it for kids as there are quite a far bit of kissing scenes and a murder scene of a person hanging on a noose.

1.The music

To me, this is the single biggest reason for me to catch The Phantom of the Opera over and over again. Songs like Think of Me, Angel of Music, The Music of the Night, Prima Donna , All I Ask of You, Masquerade, The Phantom of The Opera are all so familiar to me.

To listen to the leads -Meghan Picerno (Christine) hitting the high octane , Jonathan Roxmouth (Phantom) so powerful and commanding in his tone and the tenderness in Matt Leisy (Raoul) tone really gave me goosebumps. This is why The Phantom of the Opera is undoubtedly the most famous musical of all time using the scores from Andrew Lloyd Webber and brought to live by a very strong cast.

The sweet rendition between Christine and Raoul to “All I Ask of You” was so full of chemistry that I can almost feel the extreme jealously by the Phantom. The other noteworthy score was Masquerade which was high in energy and full of pomp and grandeur on the sweeping staircase.

I can’t remember when I got first acquainted to the music from this musical but it has been many years listening to the same scores over and over again and I never get bored of it. And to watch the musical live make me relive the magic of musical productions and the gift the Andrew Lloyd Webber has given to our generation!

2. Props, set and costumes

For close to 3 hours, I was transported to the the old Parisian Theatre. From the very beginning, when I saw the grand chandelier being lifted up high to adorn the stage, I was speechless.

The late Maria Bjornson had designed the sets and over 200 costumes, including the elaborate gowns in the “Masquerade” sequence. Her set designs, including the chandelier, subterranean gondola, and sweeping staircase, earned her multiple awards.

Another memorable scene was when the Phantom brought Christine to his lair through the misty river using a gondola. It was so hauntingly beautiful!

3. A timeless classic

The storyline is based on the classic novel Le Fantôme de L’Opéra by Gaston Leroux and some say that there is some truth in the story. The story was based on a real opera house – Opera Garnier in Paris.  As Gaston Leroux was an investigative journalist, he had taken inspiration from real-life events happening at the opera house – a real incident when a chandelier did fall in the Opera Garnier setting the building on fire and killing a woman. Around the same time, the opera house was said to be haunted by a phantom/ghost. They even heard ‘ghostly’ voices and whispers in box 5 (where in the musical must be kept vacant for the Phantom). There were even sighting of a figure wore a black cape and a mask over its face.

There is actually a lake below the Paris Opera House (which was where the Phantom lives). Fact or fiction, I loved the mystery behind this tale and the tragic love triangle between Christine, Raoul and the Phantom. I was divided just like Christine to choose between the Phantom or Raoul and a small part of me hope that the Phantom had a happier ever after ending despite his unorthodox way of winning Christine’s affection.

From the press release

With 130 cast, crew and orchestra members, jaw-dropping scenery, breathtaking special effects and more than 230 costumes by the late international designer late Maria Björnson, THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA contains some of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s most famous and stirring music, including The Phantom of the Opera, Think of Me and Music of the Night. The original cast recording, with over 40 million copies sold worldwide, is the best-selling cast recording of all time.

“Base Entertainment Asia is proud to be presenting the most successful musical of all time in Singapore. PHANTOM has been phenomenally well-received for its brilliant casting, classic staging and sweeping romantic score wherever it has went and we are confident that it will continue to thrill audiences here,” said Chantal Prudhomme, the Chief Executive Officer of Base Entertainment Asia.

Based on the classic novel Le Fantôme de L’Opéra by Gaston Leroux, THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA tells the tale of a disfigured musical genius known only as the Phantom who haunts the depths of the Paris Opera House. Mesmerised by the talent and beauty of a young soprano, Christine, the Phantom lures her as his protégé and falls fiercely in love with her. Unaware of Christine’s lovefor Raoul, the Phantom’s obsession sets the scene for a dramatic turn of events where jealousy, madness and passions collide

The Phantom of the Opera became the longest running show in Broadway history on 9 January 2006 when it celebrated its 7,486th performance, surpassing the previous record holder “Cats”. This coincided with the Broadway and the US national touring company celebrating an unprecedented 20,000 performances in the United States. On 1 January 2018 it celebrated its 13,000th performance and later that month on 24 January the Broadway production celebrated an amazing 30 years on Broadway.

The Phantom of the Opera has won over 70 major theatre awards, including seven Tony’s on Broadway and four Olivier Awards in the West End. It won the ‘Magic Radio Audience Award’, voted by the public, in the 2016 Laurence Olivier Awards. It is produced by Cameron Mackintosh and The Really Useful Theatre Company Limited.

The Phantom of the Opera

Venue: Sands Theatre @ Marina Bay Sands
From: 24 April 2019
Showtimes: Tue – Fri: 8.00pm | Sat: 2pm & 8.00pm | Sun: 1pm & 6pm
Prices: From SGD 75 (excluding $4 ticketing fee)

For booking, click here.


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Bio Royale – godsend for time-pressed mummies – updated after 3 month use

Update after 5 month of use – Sept 2019

I totally love this way of managing my hair loss problem over visiting hair salon for treatment. I have been so time pressed that i have not visited the hair salon for the past 2 months! But with the home care treatment set from Bio Royale Fall + Regrowth set (complete shampoo, conditioner, after shower serum and leave overnight oil) my hair is receiving its due care. I am have been very obedient as there was no work travel the past two months (no thanks to the situation in HK). Here a pic of my hair (i purposely position my photo to show the balding patch which doesnt seem so empty after all).

They also recently won an award at the Beauty Insider for the best treatment set! Congratulation for making it so easy to maintain our hair at home! 

Awards 2019

Update after 3 month of use – July 2019

Truth to be told, due to my work travels and family holiday, I have not been religiously using the entire set for the past 2 months as I travel very light especially with 4 kids.

That said, I am still pretty pleased with the current condition of my hair. I felt that the balding spot is less apparent. In fact, I visited a new salon recently for a hair treatment and the hair therapist commented there is baby hair. My regular hair stylist actually recommended for me to part of my hair other ways so that I can cover the balding spot but I guess I no longer have to as I prefer to part my hair the way I have been doing all this while.

Given that it is a fairly simply daily regime of Bio Royale Fall + Regrowth set, here are the latest photos of my hair condition:

For those who are keen to try, the discount code at the bottom of this post still works.

Update after 1 month of use – May 2019

Turning 30s, I grappled with challenges of being a new mum , a new parent and nurturing babies without little care of my physical well-being, skin, hair or weight. 

Turning 40s, I have been faced with another set of challenges – aging. As much as I don’t wish to admit and prefer to hide the facts , but who am I to kid. I have been experiencing sign of aging – poor vision and perhaps onset of long short-sightedness (aka  lao hua), grey hair and balding spots.

Perhaps it’s also the accumulation from the hair loss from my many pregnancies and the most logically explanation would be aging after saying bye to my thirties. But whatever the reason, I am “plagued” with signs of hair loss and balding spots.

The balding and hair loss is not new to me in fact I had seek treatment at salons to treat my hair condition however its a combination of time and also hard selling at the salon, I don’t really want regularly pay a visit at the salon in order to have an effective hair treatment (time-pressed). I still do visit hair salon but it is more of a pampering and upkeep session and not specifically to help with hair fall and hair growth.

After my experiences with hair treatments at salon, I prefer something that I can do at home and without incurring time and huge cost.

my older products accumulating with little effect

I was introduced to Bio Royale Fall + Regrowth set complete shampoo, conditioner, after shower serum and leave overnight oil.

Simple enough, not time consuming, home based (no need to commit myself to making salon visit)  and when used on a regular basis, I hope will be able to see an improvement to my hair condition. 

At first glance,

the bottles may seem small but the whole entire set lasted me between 4 to 6 weeks of usage. 

It is a 4-product set with 4 simple steps with the Bioroyale Fall + Regrowth Overnight oil (rich in Vitamin A, D, E & K) being the first step and to be left overnight.

Thereafter, the next morning rinse off the oil by using use the Bioroyale Fall + Regrowth Shampoo (safe for colour treated hair too)  , followed by the Conditioner. The final step would be Bioroyale Fall + Regrowth After Shower Serum ( Green Tea Extract and Ginseng to regenerate hair follicles, prevent hair loss and regulate oil) on hair that has been toweled dry. 

Frankly, there isn’t any additional time spent as we wash our hair daily/twice daily so its part of parcel of the daily routine. 

This is the condition when I first started using the Bioroyale Fall + Regrowth set. It is not obvious if all my fringe covers all, but once I lift my fringe up, it is very obvious to me. Besides balding spots, there are also initial sighting of grey hair too.

What I really like is that the products they use are all natural ingredients such as  jojoba oil, argan oil, arnica, ginseng tea tree oil, saw palmetto, green tea (sulphates and parabens free).

Different natural ingredients for each of its 4 products. The ingredients in different combination help to reduce hair fall and promotes hair regrowth, restore moisture and prevent split ends, rejuvenates scalp health and regulates oil production, nourishes hair roots and fortifies follicles and this I have to bold it prevents premature greying!

After 1 month of use, 

(as I don’t own sophisticated machine like in the hair salon, I am unable to see microscopic image to see whether is there baby hair growth) . However, based on naked eyes, I believe the balding spot seem less apparent compare to before. I think its too early to say the true effectiveness of the Bioroyale set, but i trust by using this set in the long term basis will be able to reduce hair loss and promote hair growth.  I really hope this condition will continue to improve through longer usage of this set at cost of a fraction of what I use to spent at the salon.

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Quote BRxmypreciouzkids to cart the Fall + Regrowth shampoo at SGD 10 only (retail price SGD 35) at their e-store

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post.  No monetary compensation was received. All opinions are my own. 


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IG Giveaway: Tea in Pajamas and Tea in Pajamas:Beyond Belzerac

If you have been following my social media in the past years, you would know that I am a fervent supporter of the BuySinglit movement. I have a specially affinity for all things written by local authors, I am the biggest fan of Catherine Lim’s stories.

As much as I have plied the kids’ library with foreign books and also old time favourite- Enid Blyton, Harry Potter etc, I have also amassed a good collection of local books – both in support of local authors and also in support of their contents which are at times are more relatable to my kids. For example, my kids can’t really relate to stories set in the winter as they do not have such an experience. It is good to read about it but the ability to relate to it may be an entirely different issue.

The Singapore kids literature sections is one of my must-go section when I visit the library too. I am delighted to add another local series to my Singlit collection – the book series Tea in Pajamas by Rachel Tey.

The story follows the adventure of Belle Marie and Tess Brown who have tea every Wednesday afternoon at 3pm (in their pajamas!) and they will transported to a fairy tale land called Belzerac. It was all good and lovely until one day Tess vanished and never came back to the real world.

Belle Marie then shared her little secret with Julian Edgehawk in hope he will follow her to Belzerac to rescue Tess. In the first book, readers are introduced the music of Melodie and the Greek Myth of Orpheus and Eurydice which the music was based on. The first book ended when Julien and Belle Marie rescued Tess from the Sapphire Forest.

I loved that the first book explored theme such as courage, self awareness and ability to distinguish what is reality and what is imagination. I especially love the beautiful illustration peppered throughout the book.

And the story does not end there as the story quickly continued to book two -Beyond Belzerac where the 3 of them, Belle Marie, Tess and Julien found difficult to exit from Belzerac. The Greek myth of Orpheus and his dead wife was explored in greater details and how he had gone to the Underworld to beg the King and Queen of the Underworld to release his wife back to the Overworld. The second book also linked to the adventures of Tess, Bellale Marie and Julien with the ill-fated couple of Orpheus and Eurydice and how they managed to return back to home.

I loved that how the author explores the underworld , a bit of Greek mythology and death to the younger audience and creating magic and immense imagination for her audience. I would say this series is good for 9 to 12 years old. The story reminds me a bit of Wrinkle in Time albeit a much shorter and easier to understand version.

The books are for sale at all major book retailers across Singapore, including Popular, Kinokuniya, Popular, Times, independent bookstores, as well as online, via Marshall Cavendish, LocalBooks.sg and Amazon.

Rachel has kindly sponsored one set to 1 lucky readers.

1. Like and follow mypreciouzkids and Rachel Tey on Facebook

2. Like and follow mypreciouzkids and RapunzelinParis on Instagram

3. Tag to as many friends on this IG post (one tag per comment)

Giveaway ends 7th April 2019 Sunday 2359.

Winner: Princessexyt

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post.  No monetary compensation was received. All opinions are my own. 


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Roses Only Singapore- world’s finest long-stemmed roses in a box

Give me a show of hands, who among you ladies don’t like receiving flowers? Even though, flowers wither and die eventually (some people or men will lament it is a waste of money) but which lady can resist the natural scents and beauty of real flowers and to be exact the mother of all flowers – roses. I am no exception as it is extremely lovely to receive flowers once in a while, roses in particular.

Typically , the flowers came in all sort of arrangement – baby breath, leaves, teddy bears, but how often do you see just un-arranged flowers in a box but yet its just as pretty in presentation.

Roses Only Singapore does just that , world’s finest long-stemmed roses in a looongggg box deliverded to all the lovely ladies out there.

I couldn’t be happier to receive 1 dozen of the most beautiful hue of roses – mauve all with its stems in a box to celebrate International Women’s Day. I measured using my youngest boy, the beauties measured more than 1m long!

Thank you so much for the lovely roses to celebrate such an important day, Roses Only Singapore.

Quote ROSESLOVE  for 10% off all purchases for all occasions.

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Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post.  No monetary compensation was received. All opinions are my own. 


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