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Turning the spotlight onto a bundle of new talents

CITY living for the younger generation should be more than just shopping for style and hanging out with friends for fun.

Only the most miserable would want to bury themselves in work and be bored to death while watching others live colorful and exciting lives.

"353 Story," a series of eight-minute movies which will be filmed in June by Zhang Min, a Hong Kong director, is looking for young and passionate performers, who will be auditioning to be colorful and exciting heroes or heroines in the new series.

The audition process for stars for the films is now under way and will run until March 29.

Sponsored by Plaza 353, the new concept mall housed in a 1930s art deco building on Nanjing Road E., the auditions will provide a place for young people to express themselves and will provide an opportunity for them to be city stars with their own unique lifestyles.

The online applications ( are open to anyone aged between 18 and 30 years as long as they have not signed a professional performance contract.

To date, nearly 200 people have applied to audition.

The preliminary auditions for singers, dancers and actors begin on March 30. A panel of professionals including a director, a stylist, a producer, an entertainer, a television host and a dancer, will assess the stars-to-be.

Their selections along with the online votes will see 60 contestants, then heading to the semi-finals which will be held from April 11 to 26. From there 30 performers will skip into the final on the first two days of May.

On the way awards for the most photogenic, the most popular, the most eloquent, the most charming, the most stylish, the most creative, best singer, best dancer and the best actor and actress will be presented.

The leading 20 contestants who reach the final stages of the auditions will receive a 28-day intensive coaching session from professional acting teachers after which some will be chosen for roles in the films.

Stylists from Universal Music-ToWing, a culture development company, will help them create new images.

The top performers will also have a chance to appear in Takuya Komatsu's new music video - he turned professional after participating in "My Hero" in Shanghai in 2007.

"Drawing on my own experience in the auditions for 'My Hero,' I think you must have the courage to seek the breakthrough for yourself," Komatsu says. "Undoubtedly, there will be obstacles here and there. But I believe it is a really great opportunity to change oneself. It's a challenge."

Goh Chai Khim, general manager of Plaza 353, says Plaza 353 tries to help the young generation decode all that's new and exciting in the world of urban living and provide a place that can be a part of their lives.


Tel: 6353-5353


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