Monthly Archives: November 2012

United We Stand

My dad, who is now on Facebook, posted this today.

Surprised to see me? Yep! Still alive and kicking in the sunny Southern California over here. The Return of Khun Stephen Cleary spurs me to start planning my return to Thai-Blogs as well. It’ll take me a while to put my multicultural hat back on, but I’ll see what I can do. 🙂

How have y’all been?

Night out at a Bangkok Cabaret!

Just recently, last Friday night to be more exact, the Paknamweb Team were invited to witness, for ourselves, Bangkok’s latest extravaganza, Playhouse Theater Cabaret at the renowned Asia Hotel.

On arrival, we were met personally by the very friendly and courteous management team who had drinks in our hands before we could even sit down. And then, before we could even raise our glasses we were introduced to one of the stars of the show, the gorgeous Ms Oot. Originating in the Rose of the North, Chiang Mai, the Playhouse team just moved into the Asia Hotel on 19 October, “We had wanted to attract a wider and more international audience” said Thomas Swain their social media and community specialist.

The cabaret is choreographed by Ramon Vizmanos from The Philippines, a flamboyant and gracious performer himself who was first dancing on stages when he was still in his diapers! As for the skills on stage, Ramon told us, “Our performers had to take three months of intensive preparation, and till now, three hours of training and rehearsal each day before they can take to the stage”. So, with the hottest mixture of the most experienced and highly trained performers and crew east of Chelsea Football Club, we were then expecting, of course, a razzamatazz…..

Unlike most other cabaret venues in Thailand, we were delighted to see that the Asia Hotel does NOT seat thousands of spectators who need to get out their binoculars to get a decent view of the show. Instead, the maximum capacity is just 350 people. Thomas explained, “We much prefer to give our audience that boutique homely feel, where they too can have the opportunity to interact with the show”. In fact, Granddad could take a table so near the stage that he would need his ventilator at the sight of the most beautiful and exquisite dancers!

What Playhouse Theater Cabaret also doesn’t offer, however, is slap-stick sleaze. Thankfully instead, they have put together a professional cast, comprising of extremely talented and energetic young performers of every gender. So, if its full-in-face totally erotic action you are looking for, you had better go to Pattaya!

Starting off with a very usual Thai-traditional attire and dancing melody, I thought, “Oh no… not another Thai-style show with a handful of performers”. But, how wrong was I to be! Instead we were breath-taken at twenty or more different set changes, including a cast of forty performers, whose ‘quick-change’ routines would have won them a place in the Final of America’s Got Talent. With stunning interactive backgrounds, we were taken aback by a myriad of kaleidoscopic color and creativity. The sensational around-the world modern-era performances ranged from: Pop dance to 80s dance to love ballads to Chinese opera to Mary Poppins to Flamenco and breakdance. And that’s just an example!

Personally, my favorite performance of the night was a wonderful rendition of Mr Bojangles in true Fred Astaire banjo and tap-dance style. As for my wife, Ms Su, she just loved the splashes of improvised comedy added throughout the show – and not forgetting, the shear beauty of the performers and their costumes. “The best fun I had all year”, said Su enthusiastically at the end of the evening – after taking ‘free’ pics with the cast. Yes, in contrast to other cabaret shows I could mention, there is no charge to take pics with your favorite performers here!

So, if it’s family-friendly night out of variety and awe you are after, get on hopping down to Playhouse Theater Cabaret the next time you are Bangkok!

Every Night of the Week.
1st Show 20:15 – 21:30.
2nd Show 21:45 – 23:00
Show Only: 1,200THB per person
Show & Dinner: 1,800THB per person

Asia Hotel Bangkok
296 Phayathai Road (in front of Ratchathewi Skytrain Station)
Tickets can be booked/purchased online, via respectable agents or at the hobby of Asia Hotel
For more details see:

How to Become a Model/Actor in Thailand

A variety of profile photographs is essential

OK. So, you have just arrived in the Land of Noodle Soups & Nose jobs and you want to make it big as a famous actor, model, stuntman or even comedian. Actor (also means actress, so ladies do not be put off!) and ‘model’ can mean anyone acting etc…. either on the big screen or in print ads. Chances are however, you will have more chance of winning the Thai lottery than becoming a huge success!

Now, most folk who have never worked in the lucrative world of ‘modelling’, automatically flinch at the word ‘model’ and imagine one to either have a hunky six-pack, or , if you are a lady of course, looks to have any man watering at the mouth. In reality, a model may be nothing of the sort; he/she maybe 65 years of age and weigh-in at 250 pounds. It all depends, quite simply, on what the client needs.

with… two of Thailand’s most wanted models

Having worked on-and-off in the business for donkey’s years, I have constantly seen all the same mistakes made by wanna-be stars. Now, would you go to a job interview as a DJ wearing a black dinner jacket and top hat? Doubt it. Often, of course, there are no actual job interviews for actors/models; you are usually chosen as a possibility for a job by your profile and photographs; the latter of super-importance.

First & foremost, put together the best pics of you possible; a big variety of photographs; pics that will be relevant to clients’ need. Just a few weeks ago I was responsible for finding “25-30yr farang lady to act as businesswomen in Thai soap opera”. Sure enough, my email inbox in the morning had lady applicants sending me photos of them in bikini, sexy stockings and very visible cleavage. The lady who I did finally choose, sent me polite pics of her in skirt and neat blouse from her English language classes. Remember, if for instance, the ad reads “foreigner, ‘gay’ looking” and you want to apply, then send them pics of you posing gayish (as one of my profile pics here). This message is so simple to understand but 90% of applicants are ignorant of it; they are wasting their own and client/productions’ time.

Even my wife, on the right not left!, can getting a TV acting job if she knows how to apply!

There is an extreme amount of competition these days (compared to the days of yesteryear) and this is especially applicable for ‘good-looking foreign ladies’. The competition is now flooded with ‘beauties’ from the former Soviet Union; be warned. The competition is far less for ‘old’ foreigners, South Asians and, blacks especially. Many of the TV commercials made in Thailand are foreign productions; ie.. Indian, Japanese and even European etc….

If you prefer to sign-up personally with modeling agencies than scouting the Internet for freelance work, then select professional/worthy agencies that have been in the business for years. Again, there is no need to look like Matt Damon or Victoria Beckham; agencies need all types of age, height and size etc…. a respectable agency will take all the photos for you, however, they will be the owner of those pics and not you! Under no circumstances, pay an agent a fee! Any agency who asks you to pay any kind of money is a scam! A proper agency will take their approx. 30% commission if they find you a job.

Ok… stayed tuned for Part Two and direct modeling/acting contacts!

Photo Guide to the Royal Barge Procession

A spectacular procession of royal barges will be on show in Bangkok  on 9th November 2012, as part of the Royal Kathin Ceremony. Representing His Majesty the King, HRH Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn will preside over the ceremony at Wat Arun, or the Temple of Dawn, in Bangkok. He will travel to the temple in a royal barge procession along the Chao Phraya River. The procession consists of 52 traditional style barges arranged in five columns, based on battle formation from ancient times. This is made up of four major royal barges, eight barges with animal figureheads and 40 smaller vessels. The five-column flotilla stretches 1,200 meters in length and 90 across. A total of 2,311 sailors serve as oarsmen.

PHOTO GALLERY 01: Royal Barge Procession >>>
PHOTO GALLERY 02: Behind the Scenes in the Navy Dockyard >>>

The bow of the Royal Barge Suphannahong is made into a head of a Royal Swan or Hamsa, painted with gold lacquer and richly decorated with glass ornaments.

The Royal Barge Narai Song Suban H.M. King Rama IX has a figurehead of the god Narai with four arms bearing a trident, a scepter, a discus, and a conch shell on his celestial transport, a Garuda.

The bow of the Royal Barge Anantananakkharat is made into the seven heads of a Naga, gold-lacquered and richly decorated with glass ornaments.

The graceful prow of the Royal Barge Anekkachatphuchong is intricately carved and gilded in a delicate pattern of small Naga figures.

Ekachai Hern How Barge and Ekachai Lao Thong Barge are Reua Ku Chak to lead and tow the Royal Barge Suphannahong in case it demands extra driving power. Both barges are gold-lacquered with the tapering column figureheads of a cross between a crocodile and Naga known as Hera.

Krut Hern Het and Krut Tret Traichak are Garuda barges with a painted and gilded figurehead of a Garuda holding a Naga, one in each of his hands and feet. A red body is Krut Hern Het and a pink body is Krut Tret Traichak.

Pali Rang Thawip and Sukrip Khrong Mueang are Krabi Barges with crown figureheads of Monkey Warlords, carved and gilded with a green body of Pali and a red body of Sukrip, respectively.

Krabi Ran Ron Rap and Krabi Prao Mueang Man are Krabi Barges with uncrowned figureheads of Monkey Warriors, carved and gilded with a black body of Nilaphat and a white body of Hanuman, respectively.

Asura Vayuphak and Asura Paksi are Asura Barges with carved and gilded figureheads of Ogre-faced birds. Asura Vayuphak’s face, hands and feet are indigo in colour with a purple coat. Asura Paksi’s face, hand and feet are green in colour with a coat of a purple front and green back.

Seua Thayan Chon and Seua Kamron Sin are tiger barges of the Reua Phiket class. The hull is ungilded but painted in the colour and style of a tiger’s body and with a tiger’s head painted on the bow.

Map of where to watch the Royal Barge Procession >>>