Saturday, June 06, 2015

Will Emcee Sharon Au end the SEA Games with "Thank You (name of country), Come Again"?

Perhaps Sharon Au just recently enjoyed a movie marathon of Harold & Kumar? Especially the part of the 1st movie, "Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle" involving one of the Extreme Sports Punks mocking Kumar with his "Thank You, Come Again" with a strong Indian accent.

This is real life, however, and for sure trying to be funny like in the movie will just earn you a label of 'racist'. Hope Sharon Au learn her lesson.

On a separate note, this is the second time I've made the reference to the movie Harold & Kumar (But for clarification, though, the earlier post, "Racism is only funny in..."Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay". Not in the real world...or in the blogosphere" has nothing to do with Sharon Au.)

Anyway as expected Sharon Au is quick to apologize just one day after the incident. Whether the apology is accepted or not, I guess only time shall tell. Meanwhile, the forum like HWZ Forums, "Sharon Au might have said something quite inappropriate just before the SEA GAMES 2015 Opening Ceremony" has been bustling with comments (mostly negative) about the episode.

A little surprise too that Sharon Au has been featured No.1 at Yahoo! for "Trending Now". She's gaining tremendous publicity, alright.

The glittering SEA Games opening ceremony on Friday night seems to be marred by a spot of controversy.

Emcee Sharon Au could have ruffled some feathers with an inappropriate exchange with a young member of the audience during the ceremony's pre-show segment.

Journalist Bhavan Jaipragas, who was covering the event, posted about the incident on his Facebook page.

A Facebook post about Sharon Au's inappropriate comment.

Au and her fellow emcees, Chua Enlai and Nikki Muller, were trying to encourage audience members to say the phrase “Hello [name of country], welcome to Singapore” to welcome the overseas delegates as they marched into the stadium.

"In an audience interaction segment before the start of the SEA Games opening ceremony at the National Stadium, emcee Sharon Au approached an Indian girl seated in the stands. The girl did not perform the act as instructed (as did others before her). Au, speaking into a mike and with the cameras trained on her, shockingly put on a strong Indian accent, and while shaking her head from right to left asked the girl: 'What (Vat) happened? What happened?'” he wrote.

Bhavan also added that Au made fun of the girl’s name.

News agency AFP said Au "asked a small, ethnic Indian girl in the crowd to speak, and then mocked her accent".

The exchange happened at about 7.45pm, before the live broadcast of the SEA Games opening ceremony.

Yahoo Singapore understands that the SEA Games organising committee (SINGSOC) is aware of the incident and has contacted them for a response.
From Yahoo! News, "Did SEA Games emcee make racist comment before opening ceremony?".

A presenter at Singapore's Southeast Asian (SEA) Games' opening ceremony has apologised after she shocked onlookers by mocking a small, ethnic Indian girl about her accent.

TV personality and actress Sharon Au prompted a minor outcry after she approached the girl, who was sitting in the crowd with an older man, presumably her father.

"What (vat) happened, what happened?" she laughed, wobbling her head from side to side, after the girl stumbled as she tried to repeat a line welcoming athletes to the Games.

Au, who is ethnic Chinese, also teased the girl about her name, Kavya, calling her "caviar" instead.

The actress insisted her comments at Friday's ceremony were merely an attempt at humour as she apologised for the exchange.

"Some of you may have watched the pre-show and heard my attempt at mimicking an Indian accent," she posted on her Facebook page.

"It was intended to be comic but in hindsight I realise how insensitive it was. I sincerely apologise to those whom I've inadvertently offended."

Au is a well-known personality in Singapore who has been cast to play the wife of late strongman leader Lee Kuan Yew, who died in March, in "The LKY Musical".

Singapore, which is 74 percent ethnic Chinese, 13 percent Malay and nine percent Indian, has strict laws on stirring communal tensions after bloody race riots in the 1960s.

The ceremony incident drew a strong response on social media as the 11-nation, 36-sport SEA Games got underway with its first full day of competition on Saturday.

"A great start destroyed by a single racist act from host Sharon Au. Will we ever learn?" posted one Twitter user.
From MSN News, "SEA Games: Ceremony host sorry for 'insensitive' comment".

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