Monday, April 16, 2012

From my In Box (April 2012)

This month, I received 2 emails from overseas readers.

Email No. 1 is from Karen Jane:

I have been reading your posts on 'Good Morning Yesterday'. I came across your site when researching Singapore. I lived there (Thomson Rise and Queens Avenue Sembawang) as a child from 1962 to 65 and have a number of photos and researched what and where they were of. It really seems like it has changed so much since I was there but it is so nice that you are sharing your memories.

I have enclosed one photo, I think it is one of the occasions I went to the Kampong where I think I went with one of my amahs and played there? I have a video of me with other children playing in door way and really think that was there. I have many photos and if you are interested would be happy to share them.

Email No. 2 is from Chris Wood:

My name is Chris Wood. I was a service personnel part-time projectionist at the "ARC" cinema in Ayah Rajah Road and also at the "Sampan" cinema in Tanglin Barracks. The civilian projectionist went on strike once and I had to man the Sampan on my own for a period. The "Kent" was being built when I left Singapore in 1963. I also went on a chief projectionist course with AKC, when I returned to the UK I left the army and worked for the AKC full time as a service engineer from the head office at Chalfont St Giles, the London office was in Dover Street in the west end of London.

I have returned to Singapore a couple of times and the "Sampan" was demolished the foundations could be seen but that's all and the "Arc" was also demolished and under the Ayer Rajah Freeway. The "Arc" was a huge metal air raid shelter, all the music played was supplied by AKC and we could only play that.

They were great days, the chief operator at the Sampan was an Indian, and at the Arc a Chinese guy. On Thursday night they use to show Hindustani films which were very well attended, these films would go on for hours, parts in B/W and parts in colour. The reason was that somebody would start making the film then run out of money and sell what he had made to somebody else who then made there bit in B/W. The film might change hands 3 or 4 times from producers!!!

Related post: AKC Cinema


Footnote: Thanks to Chris Wood for confirming something I remembered from my childhood days. I had blogged here that some of the later black and white Wong Fei Hong movies that I had watched at the Bright Theatre near Lorong Tai Seng had the last segments in colour. My brothers said they do not remember any such thing.

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