PHOTO: LAUNCH ENTERTAINMENT
By Catherine Robert,
The New Paper,
Thursday, March 27, 2014
She had flown into town from Indonesia for work-related meetings, but managed to mix business with pleasure in the best possible way.
After all, the Singaporean, who wanted to be known only as Miss Zafira, 30, was the only one who got a kiss from Grammy-winning US singer-songwriter Bruno Mars during a pre-concert party at beachfront bar-restaurant Wave House at Sentosa’s Siloso Beach on Tuesday night.
The music superstar, 28, whose real name is Peter Hernandez, was in Singapore for his first-ever sold-out Moonshine Jungle concert at the Singapore Indoor Stadium last night.
Miss Zafira, head of content sales and acquisition for an Indonesian TV channel in Jakarta, was seated at a cordoned-off area next to the VVIP table where Mars and his back-up singers partied.
She told The New Paper: “I just shouted his name and he turned and walked from his table towards the barrier where we were. He came up to me and greeted me with a ‘Hi, how are you’ and gave me a two-cheek greeting kiss.”
Miss Zafira, who attended his concert last night as well as the London leg of his tour in November last year, was shocked that Mars paid any attention to her and her four friends, especially when a throng of screaming fangirls were pushing and shoving their way to the front just to get an autograph.
She recalled: “My friend was saying that he was looking at us like he knew who we were, the kind of look you would probably give someone you recognised. But it really made me very happy that he came up to us and said hello, like we were his old friends that he hadn’t seen in a while. It was so surreal and I really never expected that to happen at all.”
There was, however, one thing that nobody expected Mars to be — short.
‘HE WAS SO TINY’
Miss Zafira said: “When we saw girls screaming his name, we just couldn’t see him at all and we were wondering where the girls were looking. He was so tiny. I had heels on and he was about my height when he walked up to us and I’m only 1.6m tall.”
Miss Zafira was at the event to support her friends — DJs Yafifth, the resident DJ at Ku De Ta, and Daniel Yeo from Attica, who were both spinning behind the deck before Mars’ arrival.
Mars, who appeared to be personable and friendly without any hint of arrogance, showed up at around 11pm and stayed for just over an hour. He stepped onto the elevated DJ platform and told the 1,000-strong crowd that it was his first time here.
Dressed in his signature unbuttoned red checkered shirt worn over a T-shirt and jeans, he sang the first line of his hit singles Locked Out Of Heaven and Treasure but then proceeded to point the microphone to the pumped-up audience to finish the songs.
Miss Zafira was not the only one lucky to be approached by Mars — Wave House staff member Desiree Oh had a brief conversation with him.
Miss Oh, who was instructed to stand by the door of the restaurant to ensure that nobody entered the premises after his arrival, said: “He came in, saw me and asked how I was. Then he gave me something like a hug... actually it was more like a handshake and a shoulder bump-type of greeting.”
The 19-year-old said she stood there stunned: “I managed to (respond) ‘I’m good’ but I was at a loss for words and didn’t know what else to say when he was standing right in front of me.”
Mars also went up to fans clinging to the barriers and autographed their mobile phone covers.
For those like Miss Rebecca Kwang, a 23-year-old undergraduate who paid $90 for a ticket to the pre-party, the one and only chance to see Mars up close was worth every cent.
She said: “It was just surreal to see him in real life at such close proximity. But I think fans like me who didn’t have tickets to the concert would have loved for him to perform one full song at Wave House. Nonetheless, (it still) made my day.”
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