Meet actor, voice artist, presenter, host, singer & writer…. Marlon Dance-Hooi in this month’s HCAC Spotlight! Marlon has been acting since the age of five with first role taking the stage alongside legendary actress Hayley Mills in an Australian production of ‘The King & I’. Since then, he has worked in numerous short films, TV episodes, music videos, commercials and stage productions, bumping into HCAC along the way. Marlon shares his HCAC experience and how HCAC has helped him in his ever growing actor’s life.
Hi Marlon! Tell us more about what you do.
Hi! Well, at the moment, I’m working as a performer and entertainer at Universal Studios Singapore, putting my voice acting skills to use.
What workshops did you join at HCAC?
I joined with the first intake of Lee Strasberg’s Method Acting Introduction. After that I took the Intermediate level workshop, short and long form Improvisation workshops, Acting for Film and TV, and several masterclass workshops. I have always felt that my training as an actor was lacking some structure and focus. I mainly learned by joining repertory theatre shows and doing student films. They helped me develop but didn’t give me a core structure.
Tell us more about your experience with these workshops.
The biggest takeaway from the Lee Strasberg workshop was learning how to enter and maintain a state of authentic engagement with the world and reality of the play or film. It’s not something you can learn from just one workshop, but it is a process that can be strengthened and refined the more you engage with it.
Marlon Hooi (right) in the stage production of, ‘The Man Who’. (Photo credit: Hot Chocolate Theatre)
As I want to continue performing for the rest of my life, these workshops were invaluable. Lessons in stillness, learning from and listening to my own body and throwing away pretense are all essential skills for a performer to have.
What does HCAC give to you that you cant really find anywhere else or would be harder to find elsewhere?
There is a genuine interest in helping you achieve your goals – not merely in the performance sphere but also in the emotional and professional spheres – is unique. Kamil Haque, HCAC’s founder, worked with me long after I ‘graduated’ to ensure I was making the most of my career opportunities, and he was always someone I could turn to to discuss issues I faced in my profession.
The sense of cameraderie is fantastic! Added to that is the fact that these are not just working actors but people from all walks of life, people with a menagerie of ideas, philosophies and experiences, and that makes the community that much richer.
Would you like to share anything else?
Also, check out my friend Ayun Nisah’s book for children and small adults, LIE NO MORE, which I helped proofread and edit – coming soon to a bookshop near you.