Monday, April 20, 2009

Aircon ~ A school, A murder, A scandal

Yesterday (19/4), I watched the play 'Aircon' at KLPAC at 3-6 PM. I went there by Metro bus from UPM and stopped at the bus stop nearby the KLPAC entrance. They I walked to the building for like 200 metre. There were dozens of people lining up to claim their tickets and the hall was full-house. I didn't get the chance to watch the play when it was first performed at KLPAC last year but this year, I was really looking forward to watch it after reading all the positive buzzes the media gave towards the play. Thankfully, I managed to buy the last ticket and also got to watch the play clearly from the top seat.

'Aircon' was written by the award-winning singer/playwright, Shanon Shah and was directed by Jo Kukathas dan Zalfian Fuzi. The play, performed in the Malay Kedah dialect (my dialect at kampung) with English language surtitles, revolved around the story of a group of boys at an elite school in Kedah (Kolej Sultan Abdul Hamid supposedly). The boys confront sex, violence, bullying, and growing up after a prostitute is found dead on the railway tracks near their school.

I thought the play was very enjoyable and worth-watching. One of the best local plays performed in Malaysian theatre so far, I would say. The script was not too difficult for me to follow. Shanon was an ex-student of KSAH and he gave every characters and situations the enough justice they deserved. He moderately mixed the elements of religion, race and numerous sensitive issues and did not exaggerate them too much. I think he did his job successfully.

Praises should be given to the actors (Aswara students) who managed to give an astonishing performance. They managed to bring the sense of empathy (feel their emotions) inside me when they dealt with the problems that occur in their lives in the play. The actors I like the most were Zahiril Adzim (Burn) and Amerul Affendi (Chep). Zahiril successfully acted the role of Burn, a senior who is friendly and caring towards his gentle juniors, unlike Chep, the best friend of Burn and the head prefect, who has a family problem (his father wants to marry another woman) and at the same time adores Burn.. =P If you watch the play, and then you would know why Chep kills the 'maknyah' at the railway station and his junior, William - it's all because of jealousy and the lack of love he gets from his family.

Apart from Zahiril and Amerul, the other actors also made me laughed really hard. Hazarul Hasnain & Firdaus Che Yahaya (Mona & Mimi), gave great yet humorous performance as the juniors who have to involve in the scandal and at the same time help to develop the plot of the play. They were also the characters who performed the most '18SX' scenes..hehe.. =P

To conclude, I like the play a lot. The actors delivered their finest performance and the storyline was truly heart-rending. Those who also watched the play would definitely agree with me. 'Aircon' is a play for matured audiences because of the obscene language used but then it could instill rather good moral values inside us. I hope they could re-perform the play next year at the the same venue because watching only once was not enough for me. If they want to perform it again, I hope they would stick to Pentas 2, KLPAC because changing the venue would make the play loses its genuineness due to the 'karenah birokrasi'. 10/10 from me. =)

Some snaps from the play :

Me & Shanon Shah

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