Wednesday, January 16, 2013

4 Generations: Sunny Low To Tasha Low Of SKarf

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The connection is simple and clear. Natasha Low or Tasha, from the current K-Pop group SKarf, is the grand daughter of Sunny Low the undisputed king of dance in Singapore from the late 1950s. Sunny learned the art from his father Low Poh San who had a dance studio at Tiong Bahru. Following his father's footsteps (pun intended) the present Sunny Low Dance Studio at The Riverwalk, 20 Upper Circular Road is his own making. 

The senior Low was the first to introduce ballroom dancing in Singapore and since the dance studio was a shop-house, the family lived and taught dancing at the same venue.   He participated in many dance competitions and later became the Singapore Professional Ballroom 

Champion in 1946, and from 1950 to 1953.

Sunny himself took up dancing at 14 and his younger sister Betty at 12.
  They both started out by helping at the dance studio. Both became household names in the 1960s when they acquired the title Singapore’s Rock and Roll and Cha-Cha King and Queen in a dance competition. The win encouraged the siblings to form The Sunny Low Dancers which had performed regularly since on television, in theatres, cinemas and night clubs whenever they could.

Ballroom Dancing Competition in Singapore Today

From the Website:
"Singapore's Father of Ballroom Dancing, Low Poh San with his wife Jenny Quek started the Pohsan Dance Studio in 1937. His children Sunny Low and Betty Low, crowned the King and Queen of Rock n Roll in 1957. Sunny Low Dancers, the household name in the seventies and eighties, were featured in Radio Television Singapore and Singapore Broadcasting Corporation. His grandchildren and their wives, Alvyn and Lucy Low and Melvyn & Nancy Low were undefeated champions in Singapore and South East Asia. Today, the 4th Generation of the Low family is very much in the business of Dance."

SKarf:
Back to the future and Natasha, daughter of one of Sunny's son Alvyn, is now a celebrity dancer herself having been cast in the KPop hall of fame as one of only four dancers in the group called SKarf (the first two letters are obviously Singapore and Korea).

                              SKarf You Tube Video uploaded by alphaentkorea


Tasha's mother, Lucy Wang who is part of the Low family dancers, is an instructor too and according to an interview in late 2012 she misses Tasha during her training in Korea.  Eighteen years young Tasha and Ferlyn Wong (20) another Singaporean were successful candidates from 3,000 hopefuls in an audition held here two years ago to select members for this KPop group.  SKarf has two other band members, Koreans Jenny Lee Joo Young, 16, and Jeong Sol, 21.

Wow! Four generations of dancers, from Poh San to Sunny, then to Alvyn and now Natasha. These are the people who have formed permanent footprints on the ballroom floor, true blue Singaporeans who leave positive marks on our memory trail.

Sunny Low chats with 60's Music Makers:

https://singapore60smusic.blogspot.com/2019/11/andys-60s-music-sunny-low-dancers.html
SKarf with Natasha Low or Tasha (2nd right)
This post is dedicated to the late ALVYN LOW, Natasha's father, who had passed away on the 11th of January 2013.   Larry Lai, friend Eddie and I paid our respects at the wake in Singapore on Sunday 13th January as we met Sunny, Lucy, Natasha and their families).

My thanks to Lai Simin, who helped with the writing of this article.
You Tube video by: alphaentkorea.
Images: Google, Raffles Town Club Singapore, and
Sunny Low Dance Studios Websites.


44 comments:

JC said...

Oh, didn't know Sunny has such a talented grand daughter. If not for the clue you gave I wouldn't have the foggiest idea what the connection is?

Cheers!

STEVEN FARRAM said...

Thanks Andy. Now I know.

VINCENT PATTON said...

Hi Andy,

Thanks for having a write-up on my dad.

I'm Maurice Patton son and he has passed on in June 1991. We have lots of Maurice Patton & The Melodians records at home still in good condition.

Simon Junior & one of the band member Sim are still around but not in contact.

Fyi - Barney Morier (Hawaian singer & steel guitars) has migrated to Perth WA.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thank you Vincent for the information about your dad and the other members. I have written to Simon Junior a few times through a friend but he has not replied.

If you know the whereabouts of Mr Sim and Barney Morier's email address I would be grateful if you could send them to me.

Is there anyway I could contact you via the Internet. I shall not reveal your email address. I am doing all this in good faith for the younger generation to read and not for rewards, monetary gains nor personal success.

Cheers.

find.din3 said...

what you're doing is great Andy! just like you've said, it really does good for younger generation like myself as I did research on Singapore musicians in the 1960s. Thank you for doing this :)

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks again to JC who was from the pop 60s guitar group, DECIBELS and Steve Farram (both above)who have always responded to my blog and mail with lots of ideas and information.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks find.din3. I don't know who you are as it is usual for readers to write anonymously. Appreciate your pat on the back. I am glad the blog is helping you with your research on Singapore 60s music.

Teoh said...

This is an amazing story. Members of 4 generations of Low family are pursuing the same dream in dancing/singing

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Yes they are Teoh. When the heart is willing the journey is possible. Thanks for the visit and support of this blog.

DJCARLITO said...

The ZARAK Dancers? Just thought maybe since that's truly a "dance" group from the pop yeh yeh era.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

That's from the Malay Pops DJ. Sunny Low and Betty Low are from the English pop genre. But the unique touch is that we all meet and perform together during the 60s. Doesn't really matter which group, language or dialect we speak in. Music binds and knows no boundaries.

BATURO said...

Thanks Andy,

The photos evoke nostalgia! I remember the day when Sunny approached my friend and invited him to take part in the 'Mr Twister Contest' held at Shaw's Sky theatre in the 60s.

Kind regards
Arthur

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thank you Arthur. Wow you are familiar with the 60s music scene. Blog readers will be glad for more stories from you.

BYRT MALLANYK said...

Ahh, now it makes sense! Thank you for giving the answer to that mystery Andy. I do remember Sunny Low!
Byrt

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks Byrt for your comment and visit. Appreciate that you remember Sunny Low. He's still at it, busy with his many groups and spreading ballroom dancing, etc. while his younger team teaches K-Pop and hip-hop.

MUNCS said...

Dear Andy,

Sorry for not being able to supply the Sunny & Betty photograph earlier to include in your blog.

Its great, thanks for posting it.

Regards

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thank you so much Mun. The posting is already up a few days ago. I just changed the photograph and it looks fabulous. What do you think?
You are a great photographer. You snapped at just the correct moment :-)

Regards.

RONNY AND THE BURNS said...

Dear Andy,

Thank you for the kind thoughts, as you've always been!

Sunny is a great dancer and dance coach, undoubtedly the most renowned in the 60s till today. I've been a fan of Sunny Low Dancers all these time. There were two of his best students (Victor Koh & Sunny Lee) who came and join the band, as leading Shindig Dancers (comprised of 3 males and 6females troupe), during the band's touring/performances in Malaysia in 1966.

My respect of Sunny Low being a great dancer is indelible.

Best Regards,
Ron.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks Ron for your informative comment. Those of us who know the 60s appreciate Sunny Low's contribution to the dance scene. He is still one of the best dancers today.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks very much to those who made this posting one of the most successful with nearly 3,000 readers within a year. That's a lot for a blog like this one. It is definitely due to the popularity of SKarf (today's K pop generation group).

Congratulations Sunny. Your granddaughter has made it, just like you.

Unknown said...

Hi! Ms Aleena Tan still teaching? I'm her former student. Thanks - Casey Koo

Alfredo Wongo said...

Great piece of write up on Sunny Low and his grand daughter Tasha Low . Was once Sunny’s student in Ballroom dancing Waltz but didn’t persevere after 4 lessons

STEPHEN HAN said...

I like to watch Sunny and Betty Low in person or on the TV.

The last time I saw Sunny was at the Majestic Theatre when he danced with Grace Chang in the 60s.They performed the Cha Cha Cha and Rock N Roll beautifully.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

yes, I was a fan too.
Always loved Sunny and his sister dance so gracefully.
Thanks for sharing the Majestic Theatre experience with Grace Chang.
The cha-cha stood well beside rock n roll's jiving movements.
What a time that was.

TERENCE LEE said...

Yes, I remember them.
Very popular.

TERENCE LEE said...

Great memories.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

AND DAVID CHEN TOO. THANKS FOR THE THUMBS UP.

AND THANKS TO BEN FROM AMSTERDAM FOR SUPPORTING THIS BLOG POST SO MUCH.

THANK YOU ALL

CHOW WEN HING [SINGER/COMPOSER] said...

As someone with two leg feet, I really appreciate the grace and power of a dancer -
think Saturday Night Fever
🕺

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

yes, he does, grace and power. Not easy. You must be a dancer too...

THANKS TO KALI DASS AND JALANI FOR THE THUMBS UP

MIGUEL TG said...

Miguel TG
Yes
Brings back memories whilst growing up in the 60s up to the 80s when I had them
perform in La Belle Amie,in Cuppage Plaza where I used run the business & host special nights for it’s members who enjoyed their spectacular performances.

Andy Young
Miguel TG thanks for sharing with us your experiences. I'd probably inform him. CHEERS.

HIROSHI DEGUCHI [JAPAN] said...

It's interesting to know that our old friend Freda took a dance lesson from Sunny and Betty Low in the late 60s. Probably, she will show us her hidden talent at the next Teepees performance. I would come.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...


Hiroshi Deguchi hello, how did you know she took dance lessons from them.
I must have missed reading it.
She will I'm sure.
That would be exciting...
CHEERS.

FACEBOOK CHATS said...

PETER LIM
hi, how are you... thanks for loving it. CHEERS.

Hi JIMMY,
Thanks for the visit. Been years since we met.

PETER LIM said...

I'm fine, Andy .. nice write up on Singapore's Dance King, Sunny Low ...
what a talented family..
👍👍😁😁..
and you have a happy weekend .. stay safe
😷😷

Andy Young
Peter Lim thanks brother.
I am Lim too.
CHEERS.

JIMMY APPUDURAI-CHUA - ENGLAND said...

went to a party in his dance studio

Andy Young
Jimmy Appudurai-chua,
Hi, you did.
Did you dance with him or with a pretty lady.
Hee hee.

SUNNY LOW [DANCER] said...

Hi Andy,
Please take care and stay safe.
Many thanks to you.

THANKING ALL MY FRIENDS AND FANS FOR THE COMMENTS AND SHARING THEIR EXPERIENCES WHEN WE MET.

MICHAEL LEE from SYDNEY AUSTRALIA said...

My late father's band often played ballroom dancing at the Raffles Ballroom. for Low Poh San and partner. I love to watch the graceful ballroom dancing especially the Waltz and Tango.

My nieces and nephews and their partners also took dancing lessons from Sunny Low studio. Fast forward to the present. My daughter Angela has a joint venture company "Scape" to promote
K-pop in Singapore.

Just to add, I remember the late Julai Tan was also a main feature on the violin especially for the Waltzes with the Blue Danube and La Combasita the mainstay evergreens for the Waltz and Tàngo both a fascination to watch.

Cherrio.

STEPHEN HAN said...

I saw Sunny and Betty Low at a Great World Cabaret Cha Cha Cha competition which they won and also on the TV.I remember the dance of Cha Cha Cha and Rock N Roll at the Majestic Theatre in witch Sunny danced with the pretty actress, Grace Chang.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Hello Michael,

much sharing here. Thank you. Possibly in the 50's when these ballroom dance contests were held, way before Cliff grew up with the Shadows. Yes, JULAI TAN, another unsung hero. He's great with his violin solos playing those years hits. And Raffles ballroom was THE place, catering much to UK elites.

And Stephen, yes you did mention earlier.

THANKS AGAIN GUYS FOR SHARING.

FACEBOOK said...

Thanks to RAYMOND CHO, FREDA HANUM and DICK YIP
for the thumbs-up and the visit.

FREDA HANUM 'TEEPEES' GROUP [MALAYSIA] said...

Wow I loved the post, my long lost unforgettable sifu dancer instructor Sunny Low,
missed the sister Betty and the family members...

Cannot forget those wonderful dancing days with them and also the Chinese Variety TV Show performances, lovely article.

Thank you Andy.
👍😊

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...


Freda Hanum hi, yes Hiroshi mentioned and I was surprised.
Glad I posted and you remember your 'dancing days'.
Didn't know you're an expert on the ball room floor too.
Yes, their variety shows on TV - unforgettable.
THANKS FREDA.

TNGPOH HUAT said...

Good memories

Andy Young
Poh Huat Tng thanks sir.
Nostalgia - great for the soul.
Cheers

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