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CNA Lifestyle

Mayday guitarist Stone caught the acting bug doing music videos

The Taiwanese star was all praises for the Singapore International Film Festival – and revealed he’s keen on playing a gay character in the future.

As the guitarist of one of Taiwan’s biggest rock bands Mayday, Stone fully understands the power of strong belief.

After all, his multiple award-winning group is known for releasing hit pop ballads and upbeat tunes with positive messages about life for 20 years.

Which was why, when the 43-year-old praised the Singapore International Film Festival (SGIFF) as a platform for cultural diversity of Asia, his 200-strong audience on Saturday (Nov 22) were all ears.

Stone, whose real name is Shih Chin-hang, was at SGIFF’s talk held at The Projector, where he spoke about his transition from musician to actor – and to a cinema hall filled with Mayday fans and cinephiles alike.

Mayday guitarist Stone on the SGIFF 2019 red carpet. (Photo: SGIFF 2019)

“There are different races in Singapore and (SGIFF) is a good opportunity for us to explore different points of views, and share different perspectives about films,” he said. “It is (doing) a huge job to help us explore the whole Asian territory.”

The rocker-turned-actor has been enjoying a career second act, appearing in acclaimed films such as Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow? (2013), Zinnia Flower (2015) and Cities Of Last Things (2018).

Stone shared that he was most probably bitten by the acting bug when the craft was required in performing in various Mayday’s music videos.

“It’s different from playing music – it's like your whole body is an instrument,” he said.

But the father-of-two admitted he is more comfortable expressing himself through music. “Music is easier for me. One piece of music sticks to one (emotional) element – sadness, friendship, love, encouragement, courage,” he explained. “It is easy to put such emotions in a melody, rhythm or a pattern when writing songs. And one can relate to the emotions instantly. It’s musical power. You instantly get into the mood.”

He added: “But in a film, it’s complicated. It’s a mixture of lots of feelings, lots of emotions. You can’t make a song that is really sad and really happy at the same time. But for a film, you have to make sure that there is a mixture of emotions. That’s very difficult for me.”

Given his current film role trajectory (“I’m often offered roles as good guys or fathers as I’m married with kids!”) Stone is hoping to be challenged to act out of his box and “try different things”.

He revealed that he was previously approached to play a gay character, but had to turn it down due to scheduling conflicts. He would like to play a similar role in the future.

“I want to break out of the boundary of myself. I want to explore something new,” he said. “I am even writing stories and scripts for myself. Mayday had a concert tour for two years non-stop, and backstage, I would write my feelings about the cities we were visiting or the people I met. I would create something about the cities, about a character, maybe a role that I want; when they are put together they become short stories, series of stories.”

So how does his fellow Mayday bandmates feel about his acting efforts and his popularity around the film festival circuit?

“My bandmates and I have the highest respect for members' individual endeavours,” he said, adding that they were initially amused.  “We will always fully support one another's activities”.

The Singapore International Film Festival runs until Dec 1. For details, visit https://www.sgiff.com/

Source: CNA/gl

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