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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Music Festival, The Prelude To Kuala Lumpur Festival Month

Source: Bernama 2009-07-13

KUALA LUMPUR, July 13 (Bernama) -- The 2009 Kuala Lumpur Music Festival that enters its fourth year like in the previous years is the curtain raiser for the one-month long Kuala Lumpur Festival.

The KL Music Festival this time was held in two stages, the first from 1-5 July and the last on July 10.

During the first stage five concerts were staged - "Lelaki Ini" by Anuar Zain, "Ahmad Nawab Goes To Life Centre', "Generasi Baru", "Sound of Malaysia", "Ruhani" - and the last one is the "Xtravaganza Nostalgia Semalam Di Malaysia".



Looking from the public response, it is evident that for once the concerts were well received by the public.

The "Lelaki Ini" concert by Anuar Zain at Istana Budaya on July 1-2 saw overwhelming response with a sold out crowd. We witnessed the huge following for Anuar Zain," said the Director General of the Culture and Arts Department (JKKN) Datuk Norliza Rofli to Bernama.

While the Ahmad Nawab concert at the Life Centre, which included Jamal Abdillah, Ramlah Ram, Syafinaz Selamat, Man Kidal, Steve Thorton and the National Choir in the artiste line up, witnessed enthusiastic response with 1,500 spectators.

The Rohani concert (on July 4) and the Sound of Malaysia (on July 5) at the same venue witnessed a crowd of 800 respectively and the Generasi Baru concert at the Hard Rock Cafe (on 5 July) as expected was well received.

Meanwhile, the Konsert Xtravaganza Nostalgia Semalam in Malaysia (July 10) at the Life Centre brought back crooners of the 70s with ticket sales surpassing 1,000, a clear testimony that the music of that era still has its followers.



NEW VENUE

The Music Festival saw some changes with the venue no longer restricted to Istana Budaya with each of the concert tailored to meet different age groups with the music including rock to R&B, unlike previously where the traditional music was the staple.

The new venues were the Life Centre and Hard Rock Cafe.

Also this year, for the first time, all concerts have been ticketed unlike the last four editions where the tickets were distributed free because the organisers feared the response would be poor if the public were to buy the ticket.

"This year all the seats have been ticketed at a reasonable price between RM25-RM250 with the RM25 being the highest number sold. The collection from ticket sales for the concerts were good except for the Rohani and Sound of Malaysia.

GENERATING INCOME

This is something that the organisers can be proud of this year.

Norliza felt that this indicated that the public want good shows and know that they have to pay for a good seat and a good show.

"We have to pay as a form of appreciation for the creative people who put up the show," she said.

Secondly, the encouraging ticket sales is probably because the music festival this time had a variety to offer based on the different music genre and audience.

As for example, those in the 40s and above can opt for the nostalgic `Semalam Di Malaysia' concert while the younger generation can head to the Hard Rock Cafe for Meet Uncle Hussain.

KUALA LUMPUR FESTIVAL

The Kuala Lumpur Festival is jointly organised by the Ministry of Information Communication and Culture, Tourism Ministry and the Federal Territories Ministry.

The month of July was chosen on the advise of the Tourism Ministry as July is the peak period for the arrival of the Arab tourists to Malaysia.

It is hoped that the Kuala Lumpur Festival will turn out to be a compelling event that will provide limelight for the capital city at the international stage.

Secondly, the event will roll out art and cultural activities throughout the month catering for local and foreign tourist.

Thirdly, the event will help to boost tourism activities for the benefit of the nation.

COOPERATION FROM THE PRIVATE SECTOR

As for the whole of 2009, a total of 70 activities have been listed compared with 84 last year. The reduced number of activities is probably due the poor economic outlook or action taken to put up programmes of quality only.

"Actually not all the 70 activities are carried out by the ministry and at least 15 parties from the private sector have lined up their items that is marketed by the ministry," she said.

There are five main activities namely the performing arts consisting of dances, theater and music; visual arts (painting, sculpture), language and literary (buku, gurindam dan puisi), heritage (wedding preparation, traditional games, visit museums and historical sites) and craft and textile (with Kraftangan Malaysia highlighting songket, batik, and Malaysian fabrics) throughout July.

WEDDING

Among the major intenary in July is the Wedding Preparation Expo and Malaysian weddings.

"This are being held specially not only for foreign tourist but also for locals and the event provides an insight into wedding preparations," said Norliza.

The Wedding Preparation Expo from 4-13 July at the Kraftangan Malaysia Complex at Jalan Conlay, is organised by the JKKN, with shows staged by the Malays, Chinese, Indians, Baba Nyonya, Iban, Kadazan and Orang Asli groups.

"Arts and culture are important components in the efforts to develop a nation. Therefore the efforts to develop the culture to generate a highly cultured society and the one that appreciates arts must be enhanced," said Norliza.


By Cik Rashidah Abd Ghani

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