Ex-Singapore Idol judge Dick Lee to direct two Idol alumni in new musical

It is a Singapore Idol reunion of sorts between ex-judge Dick Lee and Idol alumni Tabitha Nauser and Joakim Gomez in the upcoming revival of 70s musical comedy Hotpants. -- ST PHOTO: DESMOND FOO
It is a Singapore Idol reunion of sorts between ex-judge Dick Lee and Idol alumni Tabitha Nauser and Joakim Gomez in the upcoming revival of 70s musical comedy Hotpants. -- ST PHOTO: DESMOND FOO

It is a Singapore Idol reunion of sorts between ex-judge Dick Lee and Idol alumni Tabitha Nauser and Joakim Gomez in the upcoming revival of 70s musical comedy Hotpants.

Nauser, 22, who emerged second runner-up in the third season of Singapore Idol in 2009, exclaims: The moment I knew Dick was going to be the director of Hotpants, I immediately knew I wanted to be a part of this."

Gomez, 25, who came in fifth in the second season in 2006, was equally thrilled. "Having Dick ask me to try out for this show was an absolute honour and I thought, why not give it a shot?"

Other than Hotpants, which will be showing from Aug 14 to 30 at the Drama Centre Theatre, the three will also be collaborating on this year's National Day programme together.

Both Nauser and Gomez are not new to theatre. Hotpants is Nauser's second musical, while Gomez was in local parody show Chestnuts in 2009. Nauser previously starred in the semi-fictional musical National Broadway Company presented by the Esplanade in 2012, playing the younger self of Singaporean singer Jacintha Abisheganaden.

At a flashy press launch held at Larkhill Mansion at Sentosa's Amara Sanctuary on Tuesday, the media was treated to an opening musical number by nine members of the 10-men ensemble cast, which includes Denise Tan from well-known cabaret trio The Dim Sum Dollies.

Hotpants is created and directed by Dick Lee. This is the musical's second run after its debut staging in 1997. The original cast included Jacintha Abishegenaden, Kumar, Tan Kheng Hua and the late Emma Yong.

Lee, 57, who celebrates the 40th anniversary of his music career this year, says:"I wanted to do something reminiscent of when I first started my music career in the '70s, so I thought why not a revival of Hotpants? I'm eager to see how it will play out with this new breed of talented young artists."

Describing Hotpants as "a little family drama with 70s-inspired songs", he adds with a laugh: "The musical is about change, and shows how Singapore tried to catch up with the changing times. Back then, hot pants were considered the most shocking item that entered our society."