Friday, 23 November 2007

Hail to the King God of Dance

It may not have escaped your notice that I do like certain elements of the Cantopop scene over here. And sometimes, them as sing the songs are a cut above. It will not be a surprise to you that I went down and shouted, screamed and pang-panged (or bong-bonged, for the non-Chinglish speakers) my way through three hours of the most amazing, fun, nostalgic, attractive entertainment you can get in this territory.

For three hours I jumped up and down, sang, squeezed, jiggled, laughed, cried and nearly put my back out, until the very satisfying conclusion where I eventually got wet. And my right wrist is now back in my RSI support.

I’m talking, of course, of an Aaron (郭富城 / Mr. K / Ah Wong / 阿王 / Sing-Sing / 城-城 / 郭舞神) Kwok concert. Having been to all of his 2004 and 2005 shows, I had to get tickets to this one. Most of you know I have a weakness for fit blokes giving stirring renditions of stonking Cantopop dancey anthems, so I am not apologising for any pictures I might have used in this post.

Right from opening with his latest song ‘舞林正傳’ he proved that, (1), it’s not your age, it's your abs, and (2) he’s still the Greatest Dancer. From there he pounded out the hits, golden-oldies and new alike. For the first time in history, I saw him do ‘你是未來’ on stage as he wheeled out the alternative hits. Last time he did just his chart-toppers in concert – this time it was more like the fans’ choices, the B-side faves of album efforts previously unreleased as singles, or the songs everyone loves at the end of the album but never hears performed. And we loved him for it. Tracks like ‘極度哀艷的晚上’ and ‘神經’ were just magic on the ears, and seeing as he did the latter from inside the stage which morphed into a slowly revolving cage, we were enthralled. Long-forgotten gems like ‘臨行’ and ‘純真傳說’ had us jumping up and down in excitement from barely the first few strains.

Then there were the golden-oldies – and oohh, the memories – like ‘國王的新歌’, ‘有效日期’, ‘風裡密碼’ and the hopelessly catchy ‘I Love You So (太愛你)’, that just compounded an already fab line-up. Stonking jumpy-jump-jump choons like ‘鐵幕誘惑’ and ‘絕對美麗’ left not one seated person in the place – or a quiet one, neither.

And to make sure everyone got a bit of what they wanted, he sneaked in some mainstream hits too. ‘望鄉’ and the infamous ‘我為可讓妳走?’ (this time without the saxophone – but he did play the piano himself for a feathery go at ‘三岔口’ – fair play to him, he learnt the one song for the concert) were fan-bloody-tastic. ‘失憶諒解備忘錄’, ‘到底有誰能夠告訴我’ and the obligatory ‘愛的呼喚’ just kept us squeeeing, entranced.

We’d been warned, rather vaguely mind, about the end, but just why didn’t become apparent until we saw people in the seats in front and to the right of us putting on those thin rain poncho things they give you at splash-rides at the local theme park. Yeah, we were about to get wet. When he popped up the trapdoor standing in three inches of water, people got the idea. But I’m willing to bet not a lot of people actually gave a shit about the water, seeing as he was in a white shirt and trousers, and it took less than a minute for him to have danced his way see-through. ‘狂野之城’ and ‘著迷’ provided the soundtrack as he kicked, flicked and swept, and basically drenched the first four rows of the audience – all on their feet and really not feeling a flicker. Gene Kelly would have been proud.

When he slid his way down the slight ramp to the stage proper and whipped out the towel, it was a free-for-all. Spraying the crowd while dancing and singing, most people were simply trying to see through his shirt. Did he care? Did he bloody hell as like – that’s why he wore it in the first place, to give the people what they want. And he did. He really did. The banging simplicity and giddy fun of ‘動起來’ and ‘唱這歌’ just brought all the splashing and wiggling into time, and it was a very wet, but very satisfied crowd that pleaded with him not to leave the stage just yet. I doubt the Hung Hom Coliseum has seen so much dance porn in such a short space of time. Well, since his 2005 concert, anyway...

Costumes abounded. Not always my first choice (especially the spiky yellow ninja outfit) but he wore all of them so very, very well. And the opening costume was rather lush. Or rather, the bits of it that were missing. Very nice. He danced like it was his last chance in this life, sang like he meant it and showed everyone a bloody good time. His back-up dancers were marvellous (as usual), the choreography and stage used mind-bending efficiency and effectiveness, and I have to say I was well and truly gobsmacked at how he completed it all without hurting himself or falling off the Flash Gordon style moving stage.

A tremendous concert series, a remarkable man, a wonderful experience. If only more gweilos (and gweimuis) stepped out of their comfort zone and gave him a look-see, they might enjoy it too. Five foot seven he might be, but he’s all abs, arms and charisma. And we love him for it.

Peach and lube, everyone. Lots and lots of lube.

~ ~ ~ ~


Anonymous said...

You do know that David Tennnant will be interviewing Kylie Minogue on Radio 2 1030pm on Tuesday.

They are also talking about her appearance in Dr Who.


Bit of a skinny bugger in't he?

Stella Bella said...

I like him too. :)

weenie said...

I never really got into the whole Cantopop scene but do recall as a teenager listening to some Lesley Cheung CDs which were ok - was that Cantopop? But like four dinners said, he is a bit skinny, isn't he?

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