Home > Lifestyle > Entertainment > Arts
Monday November 4, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Monday November 4, 2013 MYT 8:59:47 AM
by michael cheang
Adzwadi Sani (in white cap, centre) who used to play football competitively in his teens, relished the challenge of bringing to life a football match on the stage as the choreographer for the upcoming musical SuperMokh The Musical at Istana Budaya from Nov 6-18.
Blending football and dance for SuperMokh The Musical was a challenging task for the show’s dance choreographer.
FOOTBALL is not called the beautiful game for nothing. Sometimes, when you watch a brilliant player in action – the way he moves, the way he dribbles and controls the ball, leaping majestically into the air to head or kick a ball – it can be like watching the grace and artistry of a dancer going through a routine.
“Football is an art, just like dancing,” declared Adzwadi Sani, choreographer of SuperMokh The Musical, the upcoming stage production based on the life of the late Mokhtar Dahari, who is regarded as the greatest Malaysian footballer of all time.
Produced by Tall Order Productions and Jugra Publication, the musical will be staged at Istana Budaya in Kuala Lumpur from Wednesday to 18, and stars rock singer and actor Awie as the legendary footballer, as well as Maya Karin, Rashidi Ishak, Douglas Lim, Dina Nadzir, Phoon Chi Ho, Oliver Johanan and Clarence Kuna. The show is co-directed by Hans Issac and Harith Iskander, with Michael Veerapan as musical director.
Adzwadi, who used to play football competitively in his teens, relished the challenge of bringing to life a football match on the stage. “I don’t think it’s ever been done before! I used to play football when I was younger as well, so I knew how a football match should be like, but it was challenging to translate that onto the stage,” he said.
Although there are scenes that don’t involve football, the hardest scenes to choreograph were the two football-related set-pieces – one in act two in which Malaysia takes on South Korea, and the second one involving Selangor and Johor – each with its own unique attributes and takes on the legendary footballer’s skills and prowess.
According to him, it also wasn’t a matter of just giving the cast a ball and asking them to dance with it. Adzwadi had to choreograph the football match in a way that would showcase the skills of the footballers while making it look and feel like a football match.
The first match, for example, involves a combination of dancers and freestyle trick footballers, and was probably the biggest challenge of this show.
“It was hard because it involved actors who were not dancers. The idea is to recreate a football match on stage, but with dance beats and rhythms. Hans (Isaac) was the one who suggested we use trick footballers, which was a good idea, but that also gave me another problem, because they didn’t know how to dance!” Adzwadi said with a laugh.
“Many of the footballers can freestyle very well, but without music. The hardest part was getting them to follow the music and the beat. The set piece has to follow a certain rhythm, but that can be quite hard because most of the footballers follow their own moods and heart when juggling the ball. Sometimes, their energy levels might be higher and they might kick the ball a little harder than they are supposed to!”
There are 10 trick footballers in the production, and fortunately, they were very patient and willing to learn. Adzwadi reckons he has managed to train them into pretty decent dancers for now, though he still had to keep the moves simple and uncomplicated at times.
“I believe everyone can dance, but following the choreography is a different matter altogether,” he said. “We didn’t give them very complicated movements, but the impact they have on the football match was good enough.”
Of course, there’s little point in having real trick footballers in the show without showcasing their skills, so Adzwadi has also given them the chance to show off their skills during the set-piece.
Having played football himself, and after extensive research on YouTube studying Mokhtar Dahari’s moves, he reckons he’s managed to find the perfect way to highlight the legend’s skills and talent on stage.
“The trick footballers are there to show off their dribbling and juggling skills, which Mokhtar Dahari was very famous for,” he said, adding that the other football-related set piece is a Tron-esque depiction of a Selangor versus Johor match using mostly dancers and LED lights.
“Mokhtar was famous for his dribbling skills and speed, so during that match, we use LED lights and doubles to show how his No.10 jersey would seem to be everywhere at once,” he said.
Ultimately, there is still one element that Adzwani is a little worried about – the footballs. “We really can’t predict how and where the balls will go sometimes! During our preview show, the ball got lost once, but thankfully it wasn’t noticeable because of all the movement on stage ... but still, that shouldn’t be happening!” he said.
“All we can do is to keep training hard so that everyone gets their timing and cues right, and hope that the trick footballers don’t get too excited and kick the ball into the audience! In the end, we can only try our best and hope for the best – the ball is round after all!”
> Tickets for SuperMokh The Musical are priced at RM46, RM96, RM106, RM126, RM166, RM206, RM236 and RM306 for the night shows. Tickets for the matinee (Nov 9, 10, 16 and 17) are priced at RM38, RM78, RM96, RM102, RM134, RM166, RM190 and RM246. Tickets are available from www.ticket2u.biz.
Tags / Keywords:
Entertainment, SuperMokh The Musical, Choreographer, Adzwadi Sani, Istana Budaya, Nov 6-18, 2013
Copyright © 1995-2013 Star Publications (M) Bhd (Co No 10894-D)