[Live Review] Wang Leehom: Descendants Of The Dragon World Tour @ Singapore Indoor Stadium 5th Jan 2019
Writer: Jocelle Koh
Photos from Wang Leehom's Facebook
Taiwanese-American singer-songwriter Wang Leehom is truly one of the best performers that I have ever seen live. And I’m not just saying this because he’s the reason this website exists, or that I was so excited to see him live for the first time I burst into tears the moment he stepped onto the stage. Or even because I knew and sang along to almost every song he performed that night. As biased as I am, everyone in the indoor stadium that night bore witness to the electrifyingly brilliant live performer Leehom was at his Descendants of the Dragon 2060 Concert, which was a tour de force of creativity and innovation.
I have seen hundreds of concerts and miscellaneous live performances over the years, (including a recent one by a certain Ms Swift); yet none of them have ever held my attention and engaged me so deeply as an audience member as Wang’s has. My expectations weren’t particularly high going into the performance to be honest. All I wanted to do was cry tears of joy for seeing my inspiration live for the first time, sing along to songs that have been part of my adolescent and young adult years over the last decade, and maybe get a T-shirt to commemorate the evening.
But the sprightly 42 year-old delivered much, much more; presenting an immersive, multi-format experience that seamlessly fused the concert, film and musical theatre genres. A gargantuan task in itself, Leehom instead pulled it off with finesse and aplomb. Drawing on the film genre, Wang introduces us to a Blade Runner-esque universe where he and his team of aliens were sent to earth to bring us to the planet ‘Descendants of the Dragon 2060’ where only love, peace and good music exist (teeny bit lame, but stay with me). Drawing on a tried-and-true film formula to come up with a story with highs, lows and an eventual climax, the show incorporated curated components throughout that were displayed on the screens, moving the story along by adding characters, impetus and atmosphere in a way stage setup could not easily provide on a world tour. He then added a creative twist to the live experience; bringing the story to life with the help of his dancers; some playing transitional love interests and even duet partners in some scenes, with others having small parts in moving the storyline along.
After the end of a long,eventful weekend where I encountered many musical firsts; the first time I went to Legacy Taipei, the first time I went to three autograph sessions in a row, the first time a singer recognised me personally at an event, the first time being a part of a musical event, the first time I've been acknowledged for all my work and for doing what I love. My feelings were all over the place as I recounted everything that has happened thus far on my trip. I feel like I've had an amazing journey thus far, and have had the opportunity to be a part of so many things that I'd never have dreamed of achieving in such a short trip of 6 months. I dare to say the things that I've accomplished in these two months are more than I'd have ever guessed.
Wow, the days are going by so quickly its getting hard to count! I'm already dreading having to head back to Australia after my time in Taipei, its been so much fun! Today we didn't do much, but I was able to go for karaoke for the first time since I arrived in Taipei with friends! It was a totally different atmosphere than singing in Australia; for one everyone was really happy to sing along to any song that they even had an inkling of, and everyone(for the most part) were picking songs that everyone else could sing too! Being someone who loves singing and Chinese music, I really had a lot of fun singing with people who had a broader understanding of the chinese music scene, and allowed me to have a greater feeling of participation. Usually in Australia, none of my friends really listen to chinese music so I felt like when I sang my chinese songs while at Karaoke, people weren't really listening or having fun, but were instead 'giving in' to me. Needless to say, I generally felt bad about it and picked only a few songs (unless I went with a closer group of friends).
But the feeling of singing here with people who had a better idea of chinese music was completely different, and it made me really really happy to be able to participate in that atmosphere. So I guess happiness comes from the simple things really. Being in Taipei, I'm so thankful for every wonderful meal I have, every trip I go on with my friends, and every moment that I'm in this amazing city. So be thankful for what you have; keep your eyes and ears wide open and your life will surely be full of little moments of happiness!
As Sodagreen's song <你在烦恼什么>(What's the trouble on your mind) says : “是片刻组成永恒啊" (It's the moments that merge together into a period of forever. So make every moment count!
Here's Sodagreen's song that I previously mentioned; no matter whether you're feeling happy or sad, this song will give you time to sit back, reflect, and appreciate what you have.
And also here's a song I personally love that we sang at Karaoke yesterday; Wang Leehom's <依然爱你>(Always love you). Just like the lyrics say; treasure every moment of happiness be it with a loved one or with friends, or even by yourself!
The live experience is an important cornerstone of appreciating the diverse array of offerings of any music scene. Check out our live reviews of Mandarin music showcases here!