I had eagerly awaited for this musical, having bought the tickets months ago. Being a fan of 新谣Xinyao, what better way to enjoy the songs than when they are infused into a story? It’s perhaps unfair, but quite expected, to compare this musical to another Xinyao musical 天冷就回來 If There’re Seasons. I had enjoyed 天冷就回來 so much I saw it twice and had anticipated the same standard for 记得说再见.
While 天冷就回來 uses the songs written by 梁文福Liang WenFu, the songs in记得说再见give credit to 陈佳明Chen JiaMing.
The story is about the coming of age of a trio of friends in the 1980s. They, as part of a singing group, struggles to combine their interest with their family’s expectation of them. Tay Peng Hui as Zhang Hao, narrates as he recalls his younger days with his mates JianHui and XiuJuan as they took part in singing competitions. Soon, the trio part as they further their studies. Zhang Hao leaves for Taiwan to pursue singing, JianHui to UK and XuiJuan to the poly. The time flies and the story unfolds for them individually. The part fiction/part biography was obviously referring to the producer of the show Cai Yi Ren as Zhang Hao loses his third singing teahouse民歌餐厅.
Other than Sugie, the singing for the rest of the cast was quite weak. (He was the top 7 vocalists in ‘One Million Star 3’). The cast was however supported by real singers who starred as themselves as guests in the singing competitions – Mavis Hee, WanFang, Alex Su etc.
The script could have been tighter and my friend commented about the pessimism and darkness of it, as if there is no bright future for local compositions/bands/singers in Singapore. We were not surprised to see pockets of empty seats in front after the intermission. There was not much to offer for a musical. The stage, a series of cascading stairs encasing the band on the right corner remains unchanged throughout. Other than the costumes, there was nothing to bring out the retro of that era or to show the passage of time.
My group of friends and I were disappointed. We were part of 新谣era (two of my friends were Eric Moo’s classmates at JJC) but there was nothing to connect us. What a pity!