Birthday Party souvenirs
Pictures I took
THANKS to Vivian and Carmen for these photos!!
THANKS to mm for these photos!!
Vivian's birthday party/fans gathering was held at the Backstage Live restaurant. Since it's a very small venue, there was a limit on the # of fans who could attend..a little over 100 fans were at the party. When we arrived at the party, we were given a small plastic folder which contained some Vivian souvenirs!... there were 7 Vivian postcards and 3 Vivian wallet size calendars. There was also a light blue color wristband that said, "I 'Heart' Vivian Chow 'Cross' Jesus Love You" (should be 'Loves')... but in a way, it doesn't seem quite appropriate to write "Jesus Loves You" on the wristband, since it sort of excludes fans who don't have the same religious beliefs. Fans were asked to wear the wristband during the party.
We ate a buffet lunch (fried rice, pasta, fried egg rolls, small sandwiches..other small snack foods) from 12:00pm-1:00pm...we were on a different floor of the building than the place where the party would be held. There were only a few seats inside, so most of us had to eat outside on the patio area..it was HOT outside, even under the shade.
After the lunch, we went to a different floor for the rest of the party. There were no tables in the room..and no chairs..just a small stage in the front of the room. We all had to sit on the floor, except for a few fans who sat on some cushioned seating in the back of the room. I'm not sure why there weren't any chairs... I know a few fans who had attended Chris Wong's fans gathering last year at this same Backstage Live location and there were some chairs to sit on for the fans..not everyone had a chair, but the majority did. Sitting on the floor doesn't seem to save space if more people need to fit in the room..it probably takes up more space actually, cuz sitting on the floor while crossing your legs Indian style takes more space than sitting in a chair, and people's bags, backpacks, etc. could have fit on/under the chairs instead of taking space on the floor. If I had a choice, I would rather have stood up for the entire time than to sit on the floor for 2.5 hours...it was a rather painful experience sitting on the floor.. since we were all sitting so close together and there was hardly any room to stretch the legs...my legs were killing me when we were finally able to stand up towards the end of the event. The seating arrangement on the floor depended on when you arrived at the party..if you had arrived early, then you would have sat closer to the stage..fans were not told in advance that it would be first-come, first-served for the seating..we were only told to arrive between 11:30am-12pm, but not before 11:30am...if I had known it was first-come, first-served, then I would have arrived at 11:30am..I arrived closer to noon, so I was sitting almost towards the back of the room.
Vivian appeared at about 1:20pm. She talked with the MC of the party for about 20 minutes. The MC of the party asked Vivian what's the first thing she does when she wakes up? Vivian said she doesn't wash her face/brush her teeth, etc. right after she wakes up. She would go and clean her cats' litter boxes and give them clean water. Then she would go and eat her coffee cake roll...and THEN she would go and brush her teeth/wash her face, etc. When we heard that, most of us were like, "What??? brush her teeth after?"..haha..and Vivian said, "Is that scary or what?"..and we all laughed..haha.
The MC then asked Vivian around what time she normally goes to sleep. She said she usually goes to sleep around dawn, but she's been going to sleep earlier these days..around 3:00am...she's trying to go to sleep even earlier.
Vivian said when she's at home, she usually surfs the web. She said she doesn't watch any TV and hasn't watched any TV programs for many years. She said there's one thing that she hasn't done before in her career..which is act in a stage play..she said she really wants to do a stage play, but she's still waiting for the right script or the right character for her...and if it's a musical, then she'd like it even more, so she could sing. She said if the musical is about religion, then she'd be very happy. Vivian said she most likely won't act in any TV dramas, since it's too much work...long work hours.
So after Vivian goes on the web, she said she'll go on the web again, and again, and again..hahaha. (guess she spends a lot of time on the web!). Vivian said she'll also do some house cleaning. She says she likes vacuuming or cleaning things with a wet towel. She said she especially likes to wash dishes, but really hates to cook..haha. She said she tells others to never ask her to meet at a supermarket..or the outside food markets. She doesn't like going to the supermarket cuz it's really cold where the frozen foods are...and she said she has no interest in supermarket products, so she doesn't know what the prices are for the products. But she says she loves to wash dishes and enjoys washing things.. even cleaning the bathroom. The MC asked her if she had to choose between vacuuming and washing dishes, which does she prefer?..she said she prefers washing dishes, because she doesn't have to move around. The MC asked her if she wears gloves when she washes dishes..she said she doesn't wear gloves..cuz she has to 'feel' the dishes..haha.
Vivian said if she has to work the next day, then she'll put on a face mask to moisturize her face. When she has to work, she says she enjoys doing homework/research about the work she's going to be doing..such as for World Vision. Vivian said if she has to attend an event where she needs to speak Mandarin, then she would look up the words in the dictionary and write down the ping ying of the Chinese characters so her pronunciation is correct.
Vivian was asked when will her concert DVD be released. She said all of her work for the DVD is already done.. there will be a photo book which will be included!.. we all screamed with excitement when we heard this. But Vivian said she's still waiting to get the copyright approvals for the songs..since she's not a singer working for a record company, it's more difficult to get these things done. Vivian said she's rather impatient.. she's had to send emails to many different people to follow up with getting the copyright approvals. Vivian said she's hoping the DVD can be released by Christmas, but she's still waiting to get responses back from people...so it's all still a waiting game. She asked the fans to be patient.
The MC then asked Vivian if she had to choose between washing dishes and singing, which does she like more?.. Vivian said, "of course I like singing more..haha". The MC asked Vivian if there's any recent movies she'd like to recommend. She said she saw a movie from India..called "3 Idiots" and said it's very good. She even did some research on the main character (I assume she's talking about the character Rancho) and found out he's older than her, but he can still play as a college student. Then the MC asked Vivian if she'd like to play such a character..from acting as a young person to an older adult. Vivian said if there's such a script, she could possibly try it...kinda like "Rose's story." The MC asked Vivian if she wears perfume.. Vivian said she doesn't wear perfume..and doesn't like to put on nail polish. She'll wear earrings for work, but on normal days she won't wear them.
The MC asked Vivian what kind of clothes she recently bought. Vivian said she went to buy clothes just today!..she said she secretly came to the restaurant earlier for rehearsals, and then she left for a while before the party started..and during that time, she went to fix her hair and also did some shopping. Vivian said she likes to go to the stores to shop for clothes instead of buying clothes on the Internet, cuz she's afraid if she bought it on the web, then the clothes might not be the same as what she saw on the web. She said there are some clothes which she definitely wouldn't wear, such as clothes that are 'bias-cut.' She said the most important thing when buying clothes is that the clothing is comfortable. She does a lot of research on the web to see what kinds of clothes are available for the next fashion season so that when she needs to borrow clothes or have someone make the clothes, then she'll have an idea/reference for the clothing. Vivian said she doesn't like wearing clothes that are really tight..and she needs to be able to wear her undergarments underneath.
One fan asked Vivian when she'll have a new CD released. Vivian said she recently recorded the Mandarin version of "Bonsai," but they're still deciding how to release the song..such as maybe release it together with the concert DVD. But as far as a brand new CD, she said she doesn't currently have any plans..if in the future there's a specific reason/purpose to make a new CD, then maybe she'll do it at that time. One fan asked about how she became a Christian...Vivian then explained her path to becoming a Christian.
After the Q&A part of the party, it was time for Vivian to cut her birthday cake. Next was the karaoke contest. There were 8 fans in the contest. The 3 judges of the contest were Vivian, Anthony Chue (Vivian's concert music director), and Vivian's vocal instructor, Christine Samson. The 8 fans sang their songs.. then while we were waiting for Vivian and the other judges to make their decision on who the winner would be, the MC talked about some of the previous fans gatherings and asked the fans if they had suggestions on other types of events they'd like to do with Vivian. One of the fans suggested to have a fans' pool competition with Vivian and book the entire place at Joe's Billiards.. Carmen said Vivian would need some time to practice her pool first. The 3 judges then came back with the results of the karaoke contest. But the winner of the contest didn't get to sing a duet w/ Vivian (it was previously stated in the karaoke contest info that the winner would get to sing a duet w/ Vivian). Instead the winner got to take a photo with Vivian..I forgot what size the photo will be.. bigger than 8R.
After the karaoke contest, Vivian sang 4 songs!! She sang the Mandarin song "New Endless Love" ( 新不了情 ), then sang the English duet song "Endless Love" with her good friend ah Jun...they took choir class together back in their school days and participated in singing contests together. Then Vivian sang her own Cantonese song "With You It's Much More Beautiful" ( 有您美麗太多 ; track 3 from her "Bonsai" EP which was released earlier this year). After this song, we all screamed "Encore!!"..since Carmen had said earlier that Vivian would be singing 3 songs, but of course we wanted to hear more..haha.. so we screamed for an encore. Then Carmen got on stage and said it was getting close to the time when we had to leave the venue and we still didn't take group photos yet with Vivian or the lucky drawing, so Carmen asked the fans if it's ok if Vivian doesn't have an encore... we all screamed "No!"..hahaha.. so then Vivian said she'd sing one more song as long as the fans sang the song together with her, since she didn't rehearse for this song and would feel nervous singing the song...so for the encore, Vivian sang "Bonsai." ( 盆栽 )
After Vivian sang the 4 songs, there was a lucky drawing for some prizes, although all the prizes had no relation to Vivian except for the big Vivian birthday party banner that was hanging on top of the stage. Joe had provided some coupons as prizes to a free foot massage at Foot Buzz..Joe knows the owner there, since it's in the same building as his billiards place in TST. I think there were 15 or 20 of those coupons given. I've been to 3 fans gatherings before and I finally won a prize for the lucky drawing!..I won one of the coupons for the free foot massage.. but since I don't go to such places, I gave the coupon to one of my friends.
Once the lucky drawing was finished, then it was time for the fans' group photos with Vivian. It only took 10 minutes to take all the group photos... we had to vacate the venue by 4pm, so everyone was rushing to take the photos. When it was time for me to take the group photo and Vivian saw me, she said in Cantonese, "hey, you came too?"...I didn't tell her before that I would be going to the party so that I could surprise her, and sure enough, she looked surprised to see me..hehe. I didn't have a chance to say anything to Vivian besides "Happy Birthday!"... since I didn't want to get yelled at for holding up the line to take photos.
After all the group photos were taken, Vivian thanked the fans for coming to the party/fans gathering. She said she usually doesn't celebrate her birthday and always forgets her birthday..it's always the fans who would remind her that her b-day is coming up. She said it's a warm feeling celebrating her b-day with the fans..then Viv said, "I love you!"..and then said good-bye. Vivian left at around 3:45pm. After she left, we tried some of her b-day cake..it was coffee flavored cake. Then fans were given the opportunity to buy the hot pink colored version of the wristband "I 'Heart' Vivian Chow 'Cross' Jesus Love You" for HK$10, with the money going to charity. The party was officially over by 4pm.