Discover Malaysia’s Forgotten Kingdom with Hidden Cities

Discover Malaysia’s Forgotten Kingdom with Hidden Cities
Hidden Cities premieres on 23rd November 2011, Wednesdays, 9pm
Exclusively on HISTORY™, Astro Channel 555

(KUALA LUMPUR, 10 November 2011) – HISTORY™’s flagship original production Hidden Cities is returning to HISTORY™ (Astro Channel 555) on 23 November 2011 at 9 pm. This season, the eight-part series devotes an entire hour-long episode, for the first time, to Malaysia’s hidden gem in Bumi Kenyalang (Land of the Hornbills), Sarawak.

Sarawak – Malaysia’s gateway to the wild frontiers of untouched Borneo is home to over 2 million people from more than 20 indigenous groups. But hidden beneath the tropical calm lay remnants of its turbulent past. Forged by fires of war, colonialism and rebellion, it is even said to be once an ancient land of magic and ritual.

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Host Anthony Morse explores the forgotten kingdom of a former British adventurer. The White Rajahs of Sarawak were the only Caucasian kings to rule over a dominion in South-east Asia. Moving southeast from the capital Kuching to Sri Aman, Anthony reveals the secrets behind a disappearing headhunting tribe, the Ibans. We also learn about the tragic story of early Chinese gold miners in Bau district as well as the healing rituals of the Melanau people.

Hidden Cities 2 tails the adventures of effervescent Anthony Morse as he goes in search of Asia’s forgotten treasures. Enlisting the aid of local guides, historians, archaeologists and scientists, Anthony attempts to unearth secret treasures such as the Jewish ghettos of Shanghai where the Jews worked when China opened a treaty port in 1842 , the lost temple city of Muara Jambi in Sumatra and disused British Military underground facilities, abandoned after WWII in Singapore.

Spanning across China, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, HISTORY™’s Hidden Cities is produced by Singapore-based media company Beach House Pictures with the support of the Media Development Authority of Singapore. The programme is presented by Canon and Maybank, in association with Caltex.

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Hidden Cities Season 2 will premiere on HISTORY HISTORY™ (Astro Channel 555) on 23 November 2011 at 9 pm.

HISTORY™ is the leading destination for revealing, award-winning original non-fiction series and event-driven specials that connect history with viewers in an informative, immersive and entertaining manner across multiple platforms. Programming covers a diverse variety of historical genres ranging from military history to contemporary history, technology to natural history, as well as science, archaeology and pop culture. Among the network’s program offerings are hit series such as Pawn Stars, American Pickers, Ice Road Truckers, Hidden Cities, World War II: The Lost Films, Battle 360, The Universe and Monster Quest. For more information, please visit

Anthony Morse takes you into Asia’s unknown again…
Premieres 23 November, Every Wednesday at 9pm

In and around Asia’s most bustling cities lay hidden worlds filled with forgotten palaces and temples, abandoned towns and disused underground fortresses that shelter unbelievable relics and untold stories.
Hidden Cities returns with eight episodes across Asia – covering Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia and China.
With the help of local experts that will include writers, historians, archaeologists and scientists, presenter Anthony Morse attempts to investigate and unearth these places, and reveal the tales they have hidden for so long.
In Thailand, Morse uncovers the temple relics of the ancient city Wiang Kum Kam where once the majestic kingdom of Lanna stood ground. In Vietnam he investigates the fascination the Vietnamese have for turtles – and the powerful symbolism of wisdom attached to the creature. In Sumatra, he unravels the dark past of a mining community during the Dutch occupation. And in the Philippines, he rubs shoulders with former First Lady Imelda Marcos in the very same presidential palace she once housed her infamous shoes collection. While in China, he finds out that ancient imperial musicians faced the threat of beheading if the note they played were out of tune.
In each of these countries, he meets with experts – historians, scientists, archaeologists, and storytellers. They will be his guides on this journey throughout Asia.
But the series will not just unravel these hidden gems in the city. It will also peel layer by layer the historical contexts of each story. We seek to examine the reasons why some things occur in history, and more importantly how history has shaped a people, a place, a city.

Episode #1: VIETNAM
Premieres 23 November, Wednesday, 9pm

For a thousand years, devastating wars and civil strife dogged Vietnam’s history. But behind its troubled past is a fiercely independent people with a deep hunger for knowledge and wisdom and an unrivalled skill for military defence. Proof of this lies beneath its modern cities and jungle ruins.
On the surface, Vietnam’s pace of life is blistering. But scratch deeper, you’ll find that it’s a country with an amazing past. In this season premiere of Hidden Cities, we’ll learn about Vietnam’s violent history.

From long forgotten wars that decimated a Hindu empire to the ingenuity of its common people… in resisting the superpowers of the modern era. We’ll also learn about the tenacity of the Vietnamese people, how importantly they view wisdom and education.

Beneath Vietnam’s stunning landscapes are stories that beckon all of us to explore even deeper into this promising star of Asia…


Encore details:
• 27 November, Sunday, 10pm
• 29 November, Tuesday, 11pm
• 30 November, Wednesday, 8pm

Episode #2: SINGAPORE
Premieres 30 November, Wednesday, 9pm
Singapore – One of the wealthiest countries in the world, and a modern metropolis and port.
But hidden beneath its glittering skyline lay relics of its mysterious past. The city-state has been shaped by war, colonialism and diverse cultures…. And is even said to have been first discovered by an ancient Indonesian kingdom.

In this episode of Hidden Cities, we explore the island’s forgotten World War II battlefield. We’ll also learn the inner workings of a secret Chinese rebel base. Along the way, we’ll investigate the living museum of a ‘lost’ tribe… And uncover the tomb of a Singapore pioneer.
Singapore may be leading Asia as one of the world’s most futuristic cities, but it still possesses some hidden gems of history.
The tiny but wealthy country certainly has many stories that lay waiting to be discovered in its fast-developing neighbourhood, and with this episode, we’ll help to uncover several of them.
Encore details:
• 04 December, Sunday, 10pm
• 06 December, Tuesday, 11pm
• 07 December, Wednesday, 8pm

Episode #3: THAILAND
Premieres 7 December, Wednesday, 9pm
Thailand – where centuries old rituals and modern life clash daily. It was never conquered, nor colonised. But hidden behind 900 years of independence lies a turbulent and war faring past.

Eight powerful kingdoms and 51 Kings have forged Thailand’s distinctive sovereignty and shaped its civilisation. In this episode of Hidden Cities, we venture to Thailand to find out how it succeeded in being the only country in Southeast Asia to remain independent throughout its history. Key to this lies in the ancient defence system of its capital, Bangkok – a series of fortified canals that prevented attackers from taking over the royal city.
Thailand posses an immense and complex history with stories long hidden and thought lost.
We’ll also uncover the deadly truth behind a railway built on the backs of prisoners of war and forced labourers during the Japanese occupation. Along the way, we’ll also meet a hill tribe struggling to keep their rich culture alive. As well as investigate the buried city of an ancient kingdom known as Lanna.

Encore details:
• 11 December, Sunday, 10pm
• 13 December, Tuesday, 11pm
• 14 December, Wednesday, 8pm

Premieres 14 December, Wednesday, 9pm
China’s eastern provinces are symbols of how commerce has fiercely transformed a landscape. In place of ancient capitals and small fishing villages, stand big cities commanding wealth and power.

All this is owed to the intricate network of the Grand Canal and the Yangtze river – the two water systems that have linked the eastern regions of China. For more than two millennia, these waterways have dictated the history of this region.

In this episode of Hidden Cities, presenter Anthony Morse goes on an epic journey that begins on the Yangtze River. Along the way, he investigates the largest Jewish ghettos set up at the outbreak of World War II.

As he travels southwards, he goes on a diversion along the Grand Canal, heading towards Suzhou. Here he gets a taste of an ancient performing arts known for its poetic and dramatic movements. Anthony’s travels also take him further to the historical city of Wuxi where he learns that musicians of ancient China ran the risk of beheadings if their performance didn’t make the cut. Anthony attempts to learn to play the chime bells. How will he do?

Encore details:
• 18 December, Sunday, 10pm
• 20 December, Tuesday, 11pm
• 21 December, Wednesday, 8pm

Episode #5: SUMATRA
Premieres 21 December, Wednesday, 9pm
Sumatra – A dense jungle-clad Indonesian island rich in wildlife, volcanoes and ancient history, Sumatra is both blessed and cursed by nature. Its landscape have been battered by earthquakes and volcanic eruptions …

But these same forces have also given her valuable minerals and fertile soils in return.
In this episode of Hidden Cities, we will journey deep into the rugged geography of this legendary island to come face to face with a cannibalistic tribe who once worshipped the volcanoes. The Bataks had a rich history that was fearsome and brutal in equal measure. We’ll also venture into the hidden depths of a mine never filmed before, where thousands of miners once dug deep beneath in search of coal.
We’ll also investigate an ancient site littered with human remains. Those burial sites curiously face the highlands of Sumatra. Could there be a reason?
Indonesia’s largest island is a treasure trove of hidden stories, and continues to be a source of fascination and awe.
Encore details
• 25 December, Sunday, 10pm
• 27 December, Tuesday, 11pm

Episode #6: SICHUAN
Premieres 28 December, Wednesday, 9pm
Sichuan – long known as China’s Province of Abundance, is blessed with natural resources, crystal clear waters, and fertile soils, and is famous for its spicy food and quality wines.
Like the rest of the nation, Sichuan’s cities are today developing at incredible speeds. But beneath the sheen and gloss of new development, Sichuan is also one of China’s oldest provinces with a rich and complex history that reaches back over 4,000 years.
In this episode of Hidden Cities, we will travel through Sichuan and it’s neighbour Chongqing and uncover a dazzling variety of historical mysteries and secrets.
From the seemingly impossible Hanging Coffins of the Bo people to the 500-year old brewing secrets of China’s oldest continuously operating winery, Anthony Morse will delve deep into Sichuan’s ancient cultural heritage. We’ll find out how engineering doomed thousands of people in a World War II bomb shelter but saved an entire 2000 year-old village from a massive natural disaster.
Sichuan is an intriguing and intoxicating mixture of the modern and ancient, where surprises and secrets lie around every corner.
Encore details:
• 1 January 2012, Sunday, 10pm
• 3 January 2012, Tuesday, 11pm
• 4 January 2012, Wednesday, 8pm

Premieres 4 January, Wednesday, 9pm
Formed by the fiery forces of nature, the Philippines is a pearly archipelago of more than 7000 islands splayed across the Pacific Ocean like a necklace. Its people are blessed with an eclectic mix of Spanish flair, American sass, and Asian charm all owed to the unique history of this country.
In this episode of Hidden Cities, we head to the Presidential Palace and meet former first lady Imelda Marcos to understand mechanics of a people’s revolution that reshaped the country and the world.
From an island that became a flashpoint during World War II to the mountains where an aboriginal tribe is trying to keep an ancient ritual alive, we traverse the entire history of the Philippines. Along the way, we check into a prison with invisible walls and also explore the walls of a Spanish city built right in the heart of Manila that enabled Spain to rule Philippines for more than 350 years.
Encore details:
• 7 January 2012, Sunday, 10pm
• 10 January 2012, Tuesday, 11pm
• 11 January 2012, Wednesday, 8pm

Episode #8: SARAWAK
Premieres 11 January, Wednesday, 9pm
Sarawak – Malaysia’s gateway to the wild frontiers of untouched Borneo is home to over 2 million people from more than 20 indigenous groups. But hidden beneath the tropical calm lay remnants of its turbulent past. Forged by fires of war, colonialism and rebellion, it is even said to be once an ancient land of magic and ritual.

In this episode of Hidden Cities, host Anthony Morse explores the forgotten kingdom of a former British adventure. The White Rajahs of Sarawak were the only Caucasian kings to rule over a dominion in South-east Asia. Moving southeast from the capital Kuching to Sri Aman, Anthony reveals the secrets behind a disappearing headhunting tribe, the Ibans. We also learn about the tragic story of early Chinese gold miners in Bau district as well as the healing rituals of the Melanau people.

As one of the most culturally diverse states in the world, Sarawak promises to thrill with the richness of stories hidden just beneath its surface.

Encore details:
• 14 January 2012, Sunday, 10pm
• 17 January 2012, Tuesday, 11pm
• 18 January 2012, Wednesday, 8pm

Anthony Morse is an American-Rawang (an ethnic minority group found in China, Burma and Thailand) masters student who speaks fluent English and Thai, with a dash of his mother’s native Burmese tongue, Rawang.
Born in the U.S. and currently living in Chang Mai, Thailand, Anthony’s experiences are best summed up in two words: diverse and unconventional. He has plunged the rapids of Tennessee as a white water rafting guide, apprenticed as a sushi chef in California, worked on construction and development projects with Engineers Without Borders in Northern Thailand and taught English in rural Burma. Dig deeper and Anthony surprises you with more wild cards – he graduated from a Divinity College in Balmoral; was listed in the 2002 Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges; played John Travolta’s Danny Zuko in his Orange County High School musical production of Grease; and is a skilled martial artist.
Adventurous and easy-going, Anthony’s DNA is designed for the great outdoors. He has tried his hands (and legs) on practically all modes of sea, land and air transportation. From deep water diving to cross-country motor biking, mountain climbing, bungee jumping and cliff jumping. He would sky dive too, given the opportunity. Indoors, his creative flair surfaces; from song writing to singing and playing the guitar, harmonica and piano.
At just thirty, Anthony has travelled to almost every continent on the planet, with countries including Brazil, Mexico, the U.S., Costa Rica, Canada, England, Scotland, France, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, Israel, Saudi Arabia, China, Burma, Thailand, Indonesia, Taiwan and Singapore. For this wanderer, the adventure is always just the beginning. His ultimate dream is to travel around the world within two years without setting foot in a plane.

Hidden Cities is an original production for AETN All Asia Networks. The 8-part series is produced by Singapore-based media company Beach House Pictures, with the support of Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA).

Beach House Pictures is an award-winning Singaporean production company that specializes in factual television entertainment for major international broadcasters such as the Discovery Channel, the National Geographic Channel and AETN. The prolific filmmaker produces over 20 hours of television content each year and in 2008 joined forces with critically acclaimed documentary producer NHNZ.

MASHIZAN MASJUM – Series Producer
Mashizan has over 15 years of factual TV production experience, having worked on such high profile shows as Border Wars and DogTown for National Geographic Channel. A native of Singapore, he‘s been based in New York since 2005, producing, writing, and directing shows for production companies such as National Geographic TV, Optomen USA, and KPI. In 2006, he made a mark by being the first Singaporean producer to write and direct a two-hour special titled Inside The Volcano for the History Channel in the U.S. Mashizan’s other programme credits include Into the Future – a 3×60 science and innovation series for Discovery Channel, Clash of the Gods – a 10×60 mythology series for the History Channel U.S., Evolve – a 13×60 series on the evolution of species also for the History Channel, and Extreme Living – 13×30 series on the most extraordinary residences in the U.S. for HGTV.

QUINN BERENTSON – Producer/Director
Quinn is an experienced and multi-skilled writer, director and photographer who has created a wide range of projects for international clients such as Discovery Channel, National Geographic and Animal Planet. Coming from a solid scientific background, Quinn enjoys telling factual stories in a creative and visually interesting style, and has directed documentaries on subjects as diverse as Human Cannonballs (Discovery International), Blue Whales (Animal Planet), National Parks (Discovery Travel) and Earthquakes (National Geographic). In 2000 Quinn was ࠀominated for an Emmy™ Award in “Outstanding Craft In Documentary Writing” for the Animal Planet documentary “The Twisted Tale of the Rat” and recently has been working on Biography Channel’s top-rating series “I Survived” and “Hidden Cities” for AETN/History.

KENNY PNG – Producer/Director
Kenny has worked in many different roles, on projects that range from television documentaries to online content. His international programs include the 3D series Jewels of the World (3Net), Megastructures (National Geographic Channel), Hidden Cities and Making Mao (AETN All Asia Networks), and Lonely Planet’s 6 Degrees China (Discovery Channel). Kenny’s regional works include Mondo Magic Singapore (AXN), Cybermax (ANIMAX) and Spy for Hire (Crime and investigation Network). In 2009, Kenny also directed the music video for Sajid And The Lost Boys, voted top ten Indian artistes by Rolling Stone Magazine in 2008.

ADITYA THAYI – Producer/Director
Aditya Thayi is an award-winning multi-genre director who has worked on television shows spanning travel programs for Lonely Planet, documentaries for the National Geographic Channel and the Discovery Channel and a sketch-comedy chat show for Star World among others. Adi has filmed extensively across Africa, Russia, Middle East and Asia and his films are known to have a unique mix of humor and pathos. He is also a jury panel member for the Sinema Incubator Programme, a platform for emerging Independent Filmmakers.


Written by Budiey

Penggemar filem seram yang obses dengan gajet & teknologi terkini dan masih tegar menjadi pengendali portal hiburan & gaya hidup sejak tahun 2007. Kini aktif menjadi Youtuber & Podcaster yang menemubual selebriti dalam BORAK SINI HABIS SINI dan menerbitkan program BULETIN VIRAL di Budiey Channel.

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