Celebrating the best in Malaysia's performing arts scene

Nominees for Best of 2017 Awards with Low Ngai Yuen (standing left) and Caroline Russell (standing right).  — Pictures by Ham Abu Bakar
Nominees for Best of 2017 Awards with Low Ngai Yuen (standing left) and Caroline Russell (standing right). — Pictures by Ham Abu Bakar

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KUALA LUMPUR,May 15 — Hollywood has the Oscars but those in the performing arts here have their own “awards moment” too — the Boh Cameronian Arts Awards (BCAA).

In its 15th year, Boh Plantations and Kakiseni announced the nominees drawn from productions across four performing arts categories — music, theatre, dance, and musical theatre — at the Hilton Sentral Hotel here yesterday.

However, only three will be revealed as the Best Shows of 2017 at the awards night on June 24.

Nominees for artistic excellence in Music, Dance, Theatre and Musical Theatre categories.
Nominees for artistic excellence in Music, Dance, Theatre and Musical Theatre categories.

The nominees for this year’s Best of 2017 awards are:

1. You're A Good Man, Charlie Brown presented by SIFU Productions

2. Samprati presented by Rehab Creative Arts

3. Inner Space Dance Conversations: Contemporary & Odissi presented by TFA Inner Space Dance Company

4. Inner Space Dance Conversations: Kathak presented by TFA Inner Space Dance Company

5. The Pillowman presented by theatrethreesixty

6. Fame presented by Monday Show Entertainment

7. Kandang presented by The Actors Studio Seni Teater Rakyat

8. Peking Man presented by The Actors Studio Seni Teater Rakyat and MUKA Space

Caroline Russell, CEO of BOH Plantations.
Caroline Russell, CEO of BOH Plantations.

Boh Plantations deputy chairman and CEO Caroline Russell told Malay Mail, “As it is our 15th year, we have been through a transformational journey to keep moving forward and being dynamic.”

“Last year, we narrowed down the categories to focus on the ‘best of’ awards and it saw mixed reactions from the industry.

“We have taken it into consideration and made more adjustments by trying to keep nominees for different key categories while maintaining focus on the ‘best of’ category.”

With this evolution, Russell hopes to gain a positive reaction from the industry since it is a celebration of the arts.

“It is wide and inclusive, which is the key element of the awards.”

Persatuan Kakiseni president Low Ngai Yue said the organisation’s main job is to lobby for the performing arts industry.

“We go to the ground to learn the grassroots’ wants and needs and based on that, propose policies that need to be changed or implemented.”

Low Ngai Yuen, president of Kakiseni.
Low Ngai Yuen, president of Kakiseni.

She told Malay Mail: "With the new government, there is hope of a completely different mindset.

“We are presented with a canvas to re-imagine possibilities for the country, to bring culture and art forward.”

Recipients of the Best of Awards will receive exclusive support from Kakiseni including access to Backers Auditions to pitch their shows to prospective sponsors, development programmes for art producers and practitioners.

They will also attend the Performing Arts Market in Seoul in October with their airfare and entry fee fully sponsored by Kakiseni.

To help create awareness leading up to the awards, Kakiseni also launched #gamechangers2018.

The campaign aims to highlight Malaysian practitioners getting international attention for their work in the arts and to inspire more local artists to think and create works that will be appreciated by an international audience.

This year’s #gamechangers include Aida Redza, one of Malaysia’s most forward-thinking dancers; Sharu Delilkan, a theatre producer, publicist and marketer in New Zealand, and Raz Razak, a guitarist making waves in the Los Angeles music scene.

Aida, Sharu and Raz will be guests-of-honour on awards night.

To commemorate the 15th BCAA, Boh Plantations once again presented a Collector’s Edition canister of Cameronian Gold Blend tea.

For more information, visit kakiseni.org.

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