Thursday, January 28, 2010

Article - Hotel Mania

Credit to Malay Mail Online Newspaper
Check in at Hotel Mania
Nur Aqidah Azizi
Thursday, January 28th, 2010 13:30:00

Hotel mania
From musical theatres to musical films, brace yourself for another musical installment in our very own local neighbourhood, — Hotel Mania a musical series from KRU Studios.

Yes, you guessed it right. Like any other musical, Hotel Mania is filled with plenty of singing and dancing scenes.

The story revolves around a bunch of college-age students in the hospitality industry who are eager to make it in the real world. So, basically the show is about kids at an institution, singing and dancing.

Sounds like High School Musical (HSM)? Not really.

Hotel mania

IMPORTANT ROLES: The stars of Hotel Mania (from left) Ryzal Jaafar, Marsha and Dafi have a lot to deliver

According to the director himself Nizam Zakaria, Hotel Mania is very much inspired by the new musical programme, Glee, which has won ‘Best Musical or Comedy Television Series’ in the recent Golden Globe Awards.

“In Hotel Mania, besides the drama itself, another significant strength that sets this series apart from other musicals in the country is the inclusion of KRU’s songs, to accompany the story.

This not only includes KRU’s evergreen, popular numbers (such as Awas, Ooh La La and Fanatik), but also new ones that are composed by the trio of brothers,” said Nizam.

“The interesting part is that, the songs included will not be sung by its original singers, but performed by other people, with perhaps new arrangements.

"So, this is something different for Hotel Mania and I admit this is very much inspired by Glee,” he said.

Featuring Anding Indrawani and newcomer, Adeline Tsen as the leads, Hotel Mania also features other popular names such as Dafi, Marsha, Ryzal Jaafar, Adam, Zain of Ruffedge and Sheila Mambo, among others.

It narrates the story of a graduate student from Sarawak, Adiwira (Anding), who comes to Kuala Lumpur to find his father that he has never met, a businessman who is a frequent patron of Hotel Mania.

He also befriends Girang (Dafi). “The storyline is basically built up by a panel of scriptwriters, where we sit down and draft the story as well as the script.

A lot of changes have been made to the story to suit the current situation, and honestly, we are still adjusting the script while on set,” said Nizam.

The 26-episode series will premiere March 2, on TV3’s Lestary Slot, every Tuesday at 9pm. The series will be replacing the current musical series, Tari Tirana.

Asked on whether Hotel Mania is following in the foot steps of Tari Tirana, Nizam brushed off the comparison.

“Actually, KRU has been keeping this idea a few years back, but it was put on hold due to certain factors. Now that we have been able to develop the story and add more juicy stuff, we feel that it’s about time to release the idea.

More so, with the current interest towards musical productions, we believe Hotel Mania will be able to attract the interest of fans,” he said.

Hotel mania
Since the series revolves around the hotel environment, Nizam said 80 per cent of shoots are done at the Putrajaya Marriot Hotel.

“Besides that, this hotel is quite near to Universiti Putra Malaysia, Serdang. This makes sense if the kids studying hotel management could also be here to do their training. We also like this hotel because of its unique architecture. Plus, the environment is also suitable for the series. The hotel staff are also very helpful, be it in the pre-production or in the production process.

"The biggest challenge in making a musical series was selecting the correct songs to go with the right scenes.

“We have listed down more than 200 KRU songs for the series. The hardest part is to ensure that the songs, be it the melody part or the lyrics, must fit with the scenes. If not, it will destroy the whole mood of the scene,” said Nizam.

He added, the selected songs are re-recorded by the actors and actresses of the series. Choreography-wise, Nizam is thankful to have a cooperative team, who comes up with their own dance steps for the series.

“We don’t have a specific choreographer. All cast members are open to contribute their ideas to form the choreography. So far, the method has worked well with this team,” concluded Nizam.

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