Monday July 2, 2012
Anchored in eloquence
Story and photos by JEREMY TAN
YEARS from now, some of the 15 finalists of Han Chiang College’s (HCC) Anchor Idol Newscaster Quest 2012 in Penang might be a TV newscaster one day.
Oozing confidence and eloquence in abundance, they were the cream of the crop from 176 initial hopefuls from the northern region who battled it out in a ‘live’ studio at Gurney Plaza that gave onlookers, a sign of good things to come.
As supporters cheered them on, the immaculately dressed finalists each read out several ‘news’ items from a studio setting, went on location for a pre-recorded feature, and finished off with an impromptu news presentation.
English category winner Jesline Tang Chia Ling, 17, from the Penang Chinese Girls Private High School, made light work of her given topic — cooking oil — in the final segment.
Speaking of the rising prices and linking the subject to other carbon-based fuels, she triumphed, and later attributed her success to hours of diligent reading and observation of actual TV news presenters.
“It all started out of interest as I watched the news on channels like CNN and the BBC. I thought it might be fun to sit in front of a camera and read the news.
“Though I told myself I had the potential to come this far, I was quite shocked that the judges actually picked me. The other competitors were really strong,” she said during the recent event.
Still undecided if she would pursue it as a full-time career later on, she admitted that it was something she was giving a serious thought to.
SMK Convent Green Lane’s Razila Mohamed Anuar, 16, emerged winner of the Malay category and took one step towards fulfilling a long-standing ambition. An avid follower of daily news shows, she enjoys keeping herself updated on current events.
“It feels great to be a champion, and this will be an advantage when I further my studies.
“Reading the news on TV is rather tough as one needs to be able to connect with the audience. It is my first time being in front of such a large crowd and I’m proud of my performance,” she quipped.
Fifteen-year-old Choong Yeu May of SMJK Union, the youngest finalist, took top honours in the Chinese category and surprised herself. She wasn’t sure if she had performed well enough to win and when the results were announced, she had a hard time believing it.
“I’ve emceed before and I love being in entertainment-related fields. This win has made me more keen on becoming a newscaster someday.
“Previously, I hardly watched news reports on TV. But since taking part in this contest, it has become a part of my daily routine,” said Yeu May, who was quick on the phone to share the good news with her fa-mily.
Iver Tan Jia Chuen (English), Nurul Syamira Mohd Rahim (Malay) and Ng Yi Ming (Chinese) also grabbed the Most Favourite Newscaster awards after amassing the most Facebook votes in their respective categories.
Iver, 17, of SMK (P) St George, opined that the competition gave her many brand new experiences that should stand her in good stead for the future. On top of that, she made many new friends.
“I couldn’t have grabbed the most popular award without the support of my friends and family — especially my mum, who kept on getting people to vote for me!” she added.