Thursday, January 29, 2009
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Before I go on, here's some trivia:
- Which Member of Parliament set up a theatre group with his wife and some friends some years back?
- Which constituency's residents were initially concerned when told that a former polyclinic building in their estate would be turned into a foreign worker dormitory, albeit temporarily?
- Which public relations firm just hired an MP as an account director for its public affairs practice three weeks ago?
Answers: Baey Yam Keng, Queenstown, Hill & Knowlton
We hosted perhaps the most youthful-looking MP this morning. We invited him onto our show the day after we'd heard he had joined Singapore's largest PR agency Hill & Knowlton. After explaining to us how a common thread ran through his jobs at EDB, MICA and most recently Capitaland, it didn't seem far fetched that he would join the industry and farther hone his communications & PR skills. Furthermore, which MP wouldn't be in need of those skills given their regular meet-the-people session and the granting of the occasional interview with the media. You can read periodic blog entries by Yam Keng at http://www.p65.sg.
Kickstarting today's first episode in the Year of the Ox was our chat with theatre and stage director Loretta Chen and actor Timothy Nga. After chatting with the both of them, something tells me What The Butler Saw will be a blast. It's the same sense I had after we featured Hossan, Elena and Dwayne on our show ahead of Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs. And the show was truly sensational, drawing rave reviews! So we say, times are bad, morale's low, handouts have been announced, what are you waiting for?! Go spend it on tickets to catch this promising production that boldly sells itself as the 'wackiest farce' in town this year! We all need some cheers and lots of laughter in these times! Staged by Zebra Crossing Productions, it opens at the Drama Centre Theatre next weekend.
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Spices, Spices, Spices. Although Singapore food uses lots of it, how much do we really know about the various types of spices? how to store them? cook them?
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
However my mum's taught me that we can stinge on anything BUT food. So it is with this wise saying that has prompted us in The Living Room to fill the void. Henceforth, we plan to bring you more food features by way of food reviews, interactions with chefs, bartenders, bakers, farmers, food connoissieur, photographers, consultants and restaurateurs on air and on this blog.
We begin this endeavour with our review of Prive (pronounced as 'pre-vay') - a multi-concept F&B lifestyle venue that encompasses a bar, a cafe and a fine-dining restaurant.
The restaurant's just had a menu makeover and you'll be in good time to be among the first to try the new menu devised by Michelin-starred Master Chef, Wayne Nish. Wayne who's a New Yorker is a trend-setter and champion of fusion cooking. And it comes through in his dishes. Take for instance, Torchon and Saute of Foie Gras de Canard ($32) under 'Starters'. It allows the diner a compare-and-contrast of a chilled cake of creamy goose liver and one that's fragrantly sauteed with a honey-like soy sauce. The Carpaccio ($28) was a light pink palatte-pleaser of yellowtail tuna slice refreshed with ligurean olive oil.
Wayne was also experimental with his Poached Hokkaido Scallop Lasagna ($48), choosing to use sliced tomatoes as the 'pattie' rather than sea urchin roe cream as indicated by the menu. Basking atop the flat sheet of pasta were six juicy scallops calling for the fork to strike. Wayne quipped he might attempt at using the zucchini in place of the tomato the next time. Here's a chef who'll never stop at bringing the enjoyment of food to the next heaven.
If steak's your kind of meat, choose the New York Strip Steak ($68) from the grill. It's 340g of USDA Prime Angus Striploin packed with aromatic juices that made the accompanying dish of brown sauce redundant. The narrow cut made it easy to chew on, but be wary of pockets of fat.
Don't walk away from Prive without a stab at their dessert selection. If you're down to your last cent or final air pocket in your stomach, make it the Molten Center Chocolate Souffle ($23)! Attack it as soon as it's served to avoid disappointment. Leaving it standing may lead to a potential cave-in of the blob of ice-cream and pastry into a pipin' hot bed of chocolate sauce. If you haven't called for the bill, add sixteen dollars more to it by ordering the Lemon and Rasberry Chiboust ($16). Nothing like the zing of Italian meringue to end off a meal.
Alcoholics, you can proceed to the Bar just out the door to your left or the Bakery Cafe beside it for a cuppa. I'd personally recommend the latter's glorious milkshakes. Needless to say, be prepared to pay more than what you'd get at Macs. It's a world of a difference both in quality and price. Some things aren't worth stinging, like my mum says.
Monday, January 19, 2009
Friday, January 16, 2009
Thursday, January 15, 2009
The world turns topsy turvy when the lions dance at Chinese festivities. Men have always ridden on beasts, but never beasts on men. Just look who's on top of elephants, camels and horses. The lions have it better in the Chinese culture because the men do all the work while the felines just bat their eyelids seductively and clank their wide lower jaw shut as they prance around.
Thankfully the lion that visited The Living Room (courtesy of the Zhou Guan Sports Centre & Lion Dance Troupe) was vegetarian. It was an eye-opener prying into the world of a lion dancer, getting inside the head of a lion (above: Pam in the lion) and feeling the weight on your arms as you make sudden jerks under the $2,000-plus costume that's made in Hong Kong and weights about 10 kilogrammes in all.
(above from l-r: Wong Gek Heng, Calvin Wong & Laurence Wong with us!)
The weight distribution is almost half borne by the person who manipulates the head movement (usually the lighter of the two dancers who concentrates on the facial expression of the lion) and the guy behind who's hunched over almost 45 degrees to literally hold up the behind (this guy usually the stouter and stronger of the two; he has to be able to carry his buddy on his shoulders and hold him steady when the lion stands on its hind legs).
It's one sure weight-loss strategy to be under the lion's skin. Our guest Laurence says their troupe's on the hunt for females to join the pack. Don't worry if you think the lion's are way too huge or heavy, we were surprised to hear they come in smaller sizes too!
Monday, January 12, 2009
Thursday, January 08, 2009
I've been waiting for this for weeks... actually since I found out from my sis last year that Singapore will host its 1st ever tattoo convention in Jan '09, and more recently, that Chris Garver of Miami Ink is coming down to our sunny island.
The talented team from Miami Ink: Chris Garver on extreme right.
I'm a fan of the show for two reasons: Firstly, the people who step into the shop requesting for tattoos each have a story to tell. I'm personally fascinated by these real-life stories, which have opened my eyes to the myriad of reasons ordinary people get tattoos. With Miami Ink, I started to see tattooing more as an "art form", a mode of self-expression.
Secondly, I am mesmerised by the artistic flair and raw talent of the tattoo artists on Miami Ink. I see people trickle in to the shop earnestly sharing their ideas, sometimes armed with a sketch or photo, and then I see how these guys transform these ideas into pure works on art. It's like bare skin is their canvas. The final product always blows my mind!
Miami Ink's Chris Garver & Kirby Lian on The Living Room.
In my opinion, one of the best tattoo artists around is Chris. This man is seriously GOOD at his craft. And I hope to one day be inked by him. He tells us though that the waiting list as of now is 15,000...
"15,001," I remind him, pointing to myself. Expectantly. But no such luck.
I must say it was a real pleasure chatting with Chris. He's warm and down-to-earth, and when he listens to you, he looks you attentively in the eye. When we were snapping the blog photo, he jokes, "So, do you want us to take off our shirts?" I was like OH. OKAY. But he just laughed it off... DARN.
Also on our couch this morning was Kirby Lian of Utopia Studio - the visionary behind the Singapore Tattoo Show 2009. It's undeniable how passionate this self-taught local tattoo artist is about his profession. He took a leap of faith by organising this convention, which will bring together tattoo artists from around the world.
It's truly an international platform where cultural ideas, styles and expertise will be exchanged. It's even garnered the endorsement of the Singapore Tourism Board. Kirby tells us that he plans to make this an annual event, which is exciting I think!
Well, I'm looking forward to checking out the convention this weekend. Who knows? You may just spot me with a brand new tattoo next Monday?
Singapore Tattoo Show 2009
9-11 Jan '09
11am - 10pm (Fri-Sat) 11am - 8pm (Sun)
Singapore Expo Hall 6B
$18 (1-day) / $50 (3-day)
Wednesday, January 07, 2009
Calling the shots is first-time director, actor Sebastian Tan, of Snow White & Seven Dwarves (where he played the wicked Queen) and Broadway Beng fame. The story's based on Hans Christian Andersen's tale of the ugly duckling. The show will be staged over two evenings later this month.
(above: Pam with Sebastian, Ann, Josh & Chris who's programme director of the SMU Arts Fest)
HONK! The Musical
presented by the Singapore Management University
Fri, 23rd Jan & Sat, 24th Jan 2009
Victoria Theatre, 8pm
Tickets @ $20/$25
Email to book your tickets!
Tuesday, January 06, 2009
After today's chat with Singapore Mint's Director Yip Pak Ling, I think it's a novel idea to replace the traditional red packets we give out to children at Lunar New Year with special edition coins or the 2009 Hongbao Coin Set which consists a scallop-shaped $5 uncirculated coin and newly minted coins of the 5, 10, 50 and one-dollar denomination.
Speaking of sets, we've got two Singapore Lunar Ox 2 oz 999 Silver Piedfort Proof Colour Coins each worth $163 (design below, but colours aren't precise) to give away to two lucky listeners/blog readers of The Living Room, courtesy of the Singapore Mint. Either email us at or leave us a comment on this blog, telling us why you ought to be the one charging away with one of these limited edition coins! (mintage: 20,000)
Hurry! Closing date for submissions is Thursday, 8th Jan 2009.
Friday, January 02, 2009
I thought Stan was kidding, but when I didn't bring mine down, the boy made me run up 4 floors to get it! *grumble*
Stan & Pam's moods this morning: Now plain for all our guests to see...
Well, it didn't help that our first guest of 2009 was an NLP coach & trainer! Bless her heart, Sylvia Fernandes (who's also founder of Via Group) looked a tad concerned when she saw my emoticon staring back at her. "Why?" she asked kindly. I smiled and shrugged it off as I seriously was not soliciting free therapy.
Well, the couple has generously offered to give away 2 copies of their book to our listeners. So if you'd like a copy, perhaps to pass to a friend you know who is in such a predicament, email us at livingroom@938LIVE.sg.
We look forward to having you join us in our Living Room this year. Do continue to write us as we'd love to hear from you! Happy New Year!!!