Desmond Tan to flaunt his never-before-seen wushu skills

The actor picked up the sport to perform in a martial arts showcase at the SPD Charity Show 2015

Desmond Tan to flaunt his never-before-seen wushu skills
Desmond Tan to flaunt his never-before-seen wushu skills
26 Mar 2015

Desmond Tan to flaunt his never-before-seen wushu skills

Photos: Channel 8 & Louis Teo

MediaCorp artiste Desmond Tan is ready to flex his muscles in a wushu performance on this Sunday’s SPD Charity Show 2015.

The “8 Dukes” member will be using a nandao (Southern-style knife) in his Chinese martial arts showcase, demonstrating complicated sword techniques while SPD beneficiary and talented musician Samuel Lim would weave in Chinese orchestral music with his guzheng.

The two had met up last week for their one and only combined rehearsal and built a strong rapport in their short practice. Prior to the two-hour session last week, Desmond, who was never trained in the nandao, had undergone six individual sessions to master the difficult moves.

Click through for more photos of Desmond’s training session and the interaction between MediaCorp artistes and the SPD beneficiaries.

Desmond Tan with SPD beneficiary Samuel at their training session
Desmond Tan with SPD beneficiary Samuel at their training session
26 Mar 2015

Desmond Tan with SPD beneficiary Samuel at their training session

While the 28-year-old has previously learnt other forms of wushu for his shows, this would be his first time performing with a nandao. Desmond shared that he had only began learning the skill 10 days ago and the learning experience was very different from other trainings he has had before.

“It is unlike my previous wushu performances as nandao routines require different steps and you need to channel more energy and strength when you swing the knife,” Desmond recalled.

When asked if the routine had posed a challenge to him, Desmond replied candidly, “It wasn’t easy as I had only practised for three sessions before I needed to memorise the steps and actions fully.”

As the performance involves complicated moves like spinning in the air and landing on the ground while swinging a knife forcefully, was Desmond concerned about injuries during his training sessions?

“As the blade bends easily when I use it and it is blunt, I didn’t think that it would be dangerous. However, during my second and third practice sessions, I accidentally hit my thigh with the knife and had some bruises,” Desmond shared.

The 28-year-old had since became more cautious and wore protective guards when he practised.

Musical talent who overcame his physical disabilities
Musical talent who overcame his physical disabilities
26 Mar 2015

Musical talent who overcame his physical disabilities

Though 14-year-old Samuel has had his throat badly damaged in an accident that happened when he was one year old and has since lost his ability to speak and his taste bud permanently damaged, Samuel remains positive and hopes to touch the world with his music through.

Having mastered the piano and guzheng, Samuel immediately built a good rapport with Desmond during their short two-hour training session.

Desmond also complimented Samuel for his steadiness during the practice as they had trained in a noisy school hall filled with students but Samuel remained focused and played well.

Zoe Tay interacts with SPD beneficiary Fong Ruo En
Zoe Tay interacts with SPD beneficiary Fong Ruo En
26 Mar 2015

Zoe Tay interacts with SPD beneficiary Fong Ruo En

Gearing up for the live show on Sunday, MediaCorp artistes and SPD beneficiaries are in their final stage of preparations for their performances.

Artistes Zoe Tay, Zheng Ge Ping, Chen Han Wei, Tay Ping Hui, Priscelia Chan, Elvin Ng, Desmond Tan, Nick Teo, Ya Hui, Kate Pang, Jeffrey Xu and Bonnie Loo would challenge themselves to a unique dance item where they would use soda cans as props.

While Zoe was busy with the practice sessions for the dance, she specially took time off her busy schedule and met up with SPD beneficiary Fong Ruo En at SPD’s Specialised Assistive Technology Centre last Friday.

The six-year-old was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at an early age. As she is unable to control her limb movements, she relies on assistive technology such as a wheelchair for her daily living. She is also unable to speak but has learnt to use a voice output communication device to express herself. 

Zoe Tay with Ruo En
Zoe Tay with Ruo En
26 Mar 2015

Zoe Tay with Ruo En

Zoe put a smile on Ruo En’s face during her one-hour visit while Ruo En received training on using assistive technology. Zoe spurred her on and joined her in the series of activities she does during her training sessions.

MediaCorp artistes visited the SPD headquarters earlier this month
MediaCorp artistes visited the SPD headquarters earlier this month
26 Mar 2015

MediaCorp artistes visited the SPD headquarters earlier this month

On Mar 4, several artistes also attended the press conference of the charity show held at the headquarters of SPD. They also enjoyed a fun-filled morning with the beneficiaries through an array of activities.

MediaCorp artistes visited the SPD headquarters earlier this month
MediaCorp artistes visited the SPD headquarters earlier this month
26 Mar 2015

MediaCorp artistes visited the SPD headquarters earlier this month

Kate and Ge Ping earned their smiles by engaging in a game of “donkey and the tail”, where they had to lead a masked beneficiary to pin the tail onto a donkey at the right location on the board.

MediaCorp artistes visited the SPD headquarters earlier this month
MediaCorp artistes visited the SPD headquarters earlier this month
26 Mar 2015

MediaCorp artistes visited the SPD headquarters earlier this month

Elvin chatted with the beneficiaries and worked with them on an art piece.

MediaCorp artistes visited the SPD headquarters earlier this month
MediaCorp artistes visited the SPD headquarters earlier this month
26 Mar 2015

MediaCorp artistes visited the SPD headquarters earlier this month

Priscelia joined in the big dance-along with the older beneficiaries at the centre.

Raising the bar for this year’s charity show
Raising the bar for this year’s charity show
26 Mar 2015

Raising the bar for this year’s charity show

Celebrating both its 50th year of establishment and our nation’s 50th year of independence, SPD (formally known as Society of the Physically Disabled), in collaboration with MediaCorp, would be scaling new heights the SPD Charity Show 2015.

Set to telecast live this Sunday, this year’s show would build on the theme “Where Dreams Begin” from its previous charity show in 2013, revolving around the theme “Dreams Take Flight” where SPD beneficiaries would have a platform to express themselves.

Hosted by witty Taiwanese television host Mickey Huang and local veteran host Quan Yi Fong, viewers can expect a range of performances put up by SPD beneficiaries and MediaCorp artistes.

Foreign celebrities Rainie Yang, Fei Xiang, Shen Wen Cheng, William So and China’s famous handicapped performers Lin Fei and Di Xiao Wei would also grace the show.

Raising the bar for this year’s charity show
Raising the bar for this year’s charity show
26 Mar 2015

Raising the bar for this year’s charity show

Beneficiaries of SPD would showcase their artistic talents through special collaborations and artistes Chen Han Wei, Priscelia Chan, Tay Ping Hui and Jeffrey Xu would join them on stage to tell of their journey in overcoming their physical disabilities.

The artistes would then perform alongside Zoe Tay, Zheng Ge Ping, Elvin Ng, Desmond Tan, Nick Teo, Ya Hui, Kate Pang and Bonnie Loo in a unique dance item with soda cans as props.

For the first time, the show would also have a three-hour outdoor getai show where veteran getai performers Liu Ling Ling and Wang Lei would wow everyone with their glittery outfits and upbeat songs.

Catch the live broadcast of the SPD Charity Show 2015 on Channel 8, this Sunday, March 22 at 7pm. Hotlines for donations are also open from now till March 30.

Donation Hotlines:
1900-112-0303 ($10)
1900-112-1313 ($20)
1900-112-2323 ($50)
1900-112-3333 ($100)

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