In 1915 Scottish writer John Buchan published a spy thriller, “The 39 Steps”. It was very much a book of its time, which meant it dated fast, so when Alfred Hitchcock directed it for the screen in 1935 he adapted it liberally. Now, the popular thriller has now been revived as a comedy for theatre in London’s West End and New York’s Broadway. It has won two Tony awards and a Laurence Olivier award for Best New Comedy. The Australian cast version of the show is currently running at the Academy for Performing Arts. We spoke to the director and performers.
Perhaps not with the most fortunate timing given the financial crisis, one of Korea’s leading auction houses, Seoul Auction recently decided to test the water here. It brought more than 120 contemporary Western and Asian artworks for its international debut. The auction house’s inaugural sale realised around HK$180 million, far less than the estimated total value of HK$300 million. However, it did do well with emerging Korean artists, whose work fetched two to three times the estimated prices. Three Hong Kong galleries are also specialising in Korean art.
In our regular look at the movies we focus on the latest example of an ongoing trend: Hollywood versions of Asian horror movies, for Western consumption. Examples that come to mind include “The Ring”, “The Grudge”, “Shutter”, “Dark Water” and “Phone”, and their remakes. Not content with making us frightened of cameras, video cassettes, children, showers, and phones, the latest adaptation “Mirrors”, which stars Keifer Sutherland, is determined to make us too nervous to look at our own reflections. Reviewer Gary Pollard says it’s more likely to make us afraid of going to the cinema.
Finally, in our studio, Filipino musician Jezrael Lucero (seen above) has been blind since birth. Today, at 23, he’s a gifted multi-instrumentalist. He says he began singing Sinatra songs at 13 months, playing classical concertos at two; and performing in public since he was four. Tonight he plays for us Duke Ellington’s Satin Doll.
If you want to view a streaming video of the show, please click here.