Christopher Lee beats fear of singing for new role
Local actor Christopher Lee may have released an album — Christopher Lee Story — back in 1999.
But the 44-year-old had such a bad experience in the recording studio that he has a phobia of singing now.
Lee, who stars in the upcoming Channel 8 drama Crescendo, told The New Paper during an interview yesterday: “It was very pressurising as I could hear my voice very clearly. The music producers told me I had the vocals but I did not have the talent. I was always off-tempo.”
He added: “When I had to record my songs, I would come up with excuses like ‘I have a fever’, ‘I have a bad stomachache, I can’t sing today’ and more. I felt like I was a kid trying to play truant.”
He said he was happy that a record company wanted to release his three-track EP, but he slowly realised he didn’t enjoy the process.
Crescendo, which premieres on Oct 22 at 9pm, tells the story of three co-owners (played by Lee, Tay Ping Hui and Darren Lim) of a music production agency in the 1980s.
Together, they witness the rise of xinyao (Singapore Chinese folk) songs during that period, but also see the downfall of their company when it runs into heavy debts and almost faces bankruptcy decades later.
The drama also stars Ann Kok, Cynthia Koh and Jacelyn Tay.
As part of a holistic viewing experience, there will be a Crescendo Concert on Nov 14 at The Max Pavilion at Singapore Expo, where local veteran singers such as Liang Wern Fook and Lee Wei Song as well as younger local singers like Bonnie Loo and Ling Kai will perform.
Lee, Kok and Lim will also put up a short performance on stage, of which snippets will be aired in the final episode of Crescendo on Dec 2.
For the show, Lee had to step into a recording studio again to sing four lines of a song.
He said: “I wasn’t so stressed as I was getting into character while singing the lines. It’s just a short verse. Of course I practised at home prior to the recording, and my wife (local actress Fann Wong) would sing along with me while carrying our son Zed. It’s very heartwarming.”
However, if it isn’t for work, Lee will not show off his vocal chops anywhere else.
He said: “I don’t even sing at karaoke. (Fann) would drag me to KTVs and I would sit there and just watch her sing throughout the whole session.”
Speaking of his son Zed, who just turned one on National Day, Lee became visibly excited and said: “Zed is so big now. He is 12 months old, but he is wearing clothes that are meant for kids who are 18 months old. I can’t remember his height but the doctor said he is way taller than average.”
Lee, who is currently shuttling between Sg and Taiwan for filming, is glad that he had been present to catch his firstborn’s milestones so far despite his hectic schedule.
He shared that he was there when Zed crawled for the first time, and also called him ‘Daddy’ in Mandarin for the first time.
“I was in bed with (Fann), and he suddenly muttered ‘Papa’. His pronunciation is so clear and accurate, I was so happy and touched,” he recalled.
“I hope I will be here when Zed takes his first step.”
What: Crescendo Concert
When: Nov 14, 8pm
Where: The Max Pavilion, Singapore Expo
Tickets: $68 to $138 from Sistic (sistic.com.sg or 6348-5555)