This week, Liver & Lung, the award-winning musical theatre company behind Sepet The Musical, has announced the cast for their upcoming production, ‘Melur The Musical’, featuring seasoned actors Tria Aziz and Kai Chalmers and up-and-coming musical theatre stars Mila Mohsin and Anwar Rusdini.
In 2022, Liver & Lung was one of twenty companies to receive the BOH Cameronian Grant for New Productions. As a result, Shafeeq Shajahan, winner of Best Director in 2020, has been busy devising a brand new musical adaptation of a local legend: The Pontianak.
‘Melur The Musical’ is set to show at PJPAC from the 16th to 26th of February 2023.
Set in colonial Malaya, the Musical depicts the spell-binding story of two women, Melur and Cempaka, as they navigate British ruling. Things take a cruel turn when Cempaka’s husband, the British High Commissioner, commits a murderous crime and the characters experience the wrath of a supernatural creature, now a blood thirsty Pontianak determined for revenge.
Tria Aziz, three-time BOH Cameronian recipient, plays the titular role of Melur. Known for her vocal chops, Tria has won multiple Best Actress awards for her work in various Malaysian musical productions. “Liver & Lung’s musical style is innovative, you can’t decide whether to love them for being so creative or hate them for doing things before you’ve thought of them!,” Tria commented.
The role of Cempaka will be played by Mila Mohsin. “The story of the Pontianak is one that is close to my heart as my late father and I cherished watching films together and, in particular, felt for stories of wronged women,” Mila adds. Following the footsteps of her mother Tiara Jacquelina, Mila will be making a debut with Liver & Lung for this will be her first performance in an original Malaysian musical.
Kai Chalmers, who starred in Ola Bola The Musical, will be taking on the role of Wilson, Cempaka’s British-born husband. A graduate from The Arts Education School in London, Kai has always been passionate about horror and is excited to play an antagonistic role. “Kai brings a nuanced and poignant approach to playing a villain and I can’t wait for you to see him in action,” said Shafeeq.
The role of Si Aman will be played by Anwar Rusdini, an accomplished actor/director who has featured in a number of television programmes with Astro such as Love Elsa and Sihir. “As a proud Malay actor, the character is right up my alley. I am honoured to be given the opportunity to contribute to his story with a company like Liver & Lung,” said Anwar. Anwar previously starred in Mud The Musical and Dato Seri at KLPAC.
“Since its establishment, Liver & Lung has been successful in producing crowd-pullers with a unique storytelling style. It is important that BOH Cameronian New Production Grant recipients like Liver & Lung produce shows like Melur The Musical, evoking excitement and curiosity, especially to get new audiences into our theatres,” Lylatul Qadrina, Vice President of Kaki Seni comments.
“We have the most exciting cast, the most incredible music and, honestly, some of the best creatives collaborating across the world on this project.” The Musical will feature original music and lyrics, inspired by traditional Malay folk songs and horror influences across generations. Shafeeq will compose the musical with frequent collaborators: Badrish, co-composer of Sepet The Musical, and Vasilis Konstantinides, Cypriot musician and pianist. The musical will be produced by Su En Hoh.
Tickets for Melur The Musical sell out extremely quickly, so audiences are encouraged to purchase tickets as soon as possible here. Viewers can also subscribe to Liver & Lung’s YouTube channel for more content or follow its Instagram for further updates.
Directed & Written by: Shafeeq Shajahan
Produced by: Su En Hoh
Music by: Shafeeq Shajahan, Badrish, Vasilis Konstantinides
Cast: Tria Aziz, Mila Mohsin, Kai Chalmers, Anwar Rusdini
This musical contains themes of death and bereavement, as well as acts of violence, horror and death on stage. Suitable for ages 12+.