A relatively new face in the drama production scene at CHC, who played the role of the scheming Titus in The Centurion, had audiences asking, “Who’s that guy?”
Contributed By Yong Yung shin
Michael Kwah is a 31-year-old freelance artiste and talents coordinator in the film and fashion industry. He was called to audition for the part of Titus. Like his counterpart, Ed Ong, who played the opposite lead role of Marcus, Kwah felt inadequate in terms of experience and physique compared to the rest of the veteran Drama Ministry volunteers.
“But I wanted to serve more in church this year, so I went for it, and did my best,” said Kwah. After four to five rounds of auditions, he landed the lead villain role of Titus.
Participating in the drama was quite an experience and an eye-opener for Kwah. On set, everyone was very serious and focused. To allocate time for rehearsals and training sessions, Kwah set aside his media projects and social engagements. He followed a strict regime of exercise and proper diet. He shared, “My personal trainer friend Vincent is the one who tirelessly plan out a routine gym workout for me. We would start with two sets of 50 situps, 50 pushups and 10 pull ups, and he worked on building my chest muscles, back muscles, shoulders muscles, arms muscles, all body areas especially the biceps, triceps using 15kg or 20kg dumbbells—all done in sets of 3. Each session lasted around one to two hours, four times a week. On those days, my muscles ached so much that I couldn’t even walk properly. I didn’t even the strength to open my house door!”
Kwah revealed that he also had to abstain from fried food, chocolates and ice-creams. “I just feasted on rice, beef, supplements, fruits, protein and fiber bars.”
Especially memorable were the training sessions for the fighting scenes. Ong and Kwah sustained minor but multiple injuries including bruised and sprained fingers, cuts and grazes on the arms, legs, and torso. Yet, both actors remained unfazed and determined to perfect their fight routines.
Despite the grueling hours of training, it has been a tremendous experience. Says Kwah, “I’ve learned so much throughout the entire production, not just in terms of acting skills but by witnessing each person’s perseverance and undying faith. Staying unfazed by impossibilities while tapping into God for strength, we were always able to move forward and accomplish our goal eventually.”