Featured Lion: Randall Fung

Tak­ing the “Fam­ily” on Stage to the “Fam­ily” on the Field

By Coach Mark

Mr. Fung, C Mark, Randall, Randall's little brother, Ed, Anthony Recently, I was invited to attend a play from one of our senior play­ers. A play! I hon­estly did not know what to expect. The play ran 2 shows for 4 con­sec­u­tive days in June at the Janet Pomeroy Cen­ter right next to the San Fran­cisco zoo. I invited two other senior play­ers to come along, AL and EL.

The invi­tee, Ran­dall Fung, is a first year foot­ball player at Galileo. It will also be his last year because he’s a senior. Ran­dall has been work­ing dili­gently with offen­sive coör­di­na­tor, coach Don, on his quar­ter­back skills. Although Ran­dall has a few essen­tial skills required for that posi­tion, his lack of expe­ri­ence is his dis­ad­van­tage when com­pared to two younger quar­ter­backs, a junior (A. Rubi) and a sopho­more (K. Nel­son). In this predica­ment is where Ran­dall shines because he knows where he stands as a quar­ter­back and yet, he con­tin­ues to work hard at that posi­tion so that he can be the best he can be. He attends QB meet­ings and work­outs. He will play any posi­tion that is needed dur­ing prac­tice, like being a full­back at a spring prac­tice. He’s not a com­plainer, he’s blue-collar worker on and off the field who knows what it means to be a part of a team.

At the play, there were over 100 kids from var­i­ous sum­mer day camps and guests like me and guests from the Janet Pomeroy Cen­ter. So, I didn’t know what to expect until it actu­ally started. I like plays, at least most of them. The last one I saw was “Billy Elliot” in Lon­don and thor­oughly enjoyed it. “Sin­gin’ in the Rain” ranks as one of my all-time favorite movies. What amazes me are the broad range of tal­ent these things require: act­ing, singing, and the phys­i­cal demands of danc­ing and acro­bat­ics. As a foot­ball coach and a week­end war­rior, I appre­ci­ate the ath­leti­cism I see in Gene Kelly’s pow­er­ful danc­ing and the acro­batic scenes in Billy Elliot, espe­cially when Billy bounces off the wall for a flip. Here I am, before the cur­tain opened, won­der­ing if the Fung family’s play will be ele­men­tary and ama­teur, or will it have a chance to be like “Billy Elliot” and “Sin­gin’ in the Rain”.

The open­ing act was com­i­cal. Ran­dall, along with two other younger actors, had a dif­fi­cult time com­mu­ni­cat­ing while try­ing to set up for a cel­e­bra­tion in front of a cas­tle. It reminded me of the “Make ‘em Laugh” rou­tine in “Sin­gin’ in the Rain” and yes, Randall’s scene made me laugh. We all laughed. We don’t see Ran­dall until the dra­matic end­ing with the bat­tle scene involv­ing two wiz­ards con­jur­ing up war­riors and ani­mals to fight. The audi­ence actu­ally jumped when the first explo­sion went off. Ran­dall was the abom­inable snow­man caught in a los­ing bat­tle. I was very impressed with the dra­matic and cli­matic fight sequences.

When the cur­tain closed and after all the kids and guests have filed out, the three of us found Ran­dall to thank him for invit­ing us. We met the whole fam­ily and got a VIP back­stage tour from Randall’s uncle. As an art teacher, I appre­ci­ated the details put into mak­ing the trees and the props. The giant tree at stage right was not a tree painted on card­board or wood. It had leaves, a trunk that was 3-dimensionally lay­ered with tex­ture, and a branch that snaps in half dur­ing the bat­tle scene. Need­less to say, the cos­tumes and every­thing else was just as finely made.

The Trailer (if it there was one)

Open­ing text: “A new play…brought to you by the “Friends Of…”…a fam­ily event 21 years in the making…”

Then a bunch of video clips to fry your brain as loud music plays: “a vil­lage cel­e­brat­ing”, “a dance scene in the 1950’s”, “a brother and sis­ter look­ing for a clue”, “2 wiz­ards duel­ing”, “ani­mals and beasts fight­ing”, “explo­sions”, “more explo­sions”, “pop­corn”, “the ice cream man doing an evil laugh”

A really, really slow video clip: “the evil wiz­ard push­ing an ice cream cart”

The big title text read by that movie voice guy: “Mystery..of..the..Wizards!”, “a Fung Fam­ily and Friends per­for­mance you don’t want to miss”, “star­ring Ran­dall Fung, in his last per­for­mance role before col­lege”, “his dad as the good wiz­ard”, “his lit­tle brother as the…little brother”

End­ing video clip: “the tiger turn­ing to the cam­era and growling”

Clos­ing text: “open­ing in June 2011”

The Ran­dall Fung Interview

GFB: Hey Ran­dall, thanks for com­ing out here for this inter­view. You mind me call­ing you Randy?

RF: Yeah, only my mom calls me Randy so it’s kinda’ weird.

GFB: Ok, sorry about that Ran­dall. You are a senior this year at Galileo, how long have you been in these plays?

RF: Since I was 3, you do the math.

GFB: Wow, that’s a long time! I can’t imag­ine what your audi­tion looked like. I mean, was it just a lot of goo-goo and gah-gahs?

RF: Haha, I really don’t remem­ber. Prob­a­bly included a few dia­per changes too. I think I passed the inter­view when I was born into the Fung family.

GFB: What do you mean?

RF: My uncles, Dr. Gor­don Fung and Dr. Gre­gory Fung with their fam­i­lies and friends felt that the val­ues of shar­ing and car­ing were worth pass­ing on to the com­mu­nity and the next gen­er­a­tions.  They wanted to give back to the com­mu­nity that helped to raise them as they were born and raised in San Fran­cisco.  The group gath­ered in a relative’s liv­ing room and dis­cussed dif­fer­ent ways to present this idea. We felt that a good way is to present a show to the com­mu­nity free of charge.

GFB: That is a noble effort! That’s got to be one of the most pro­duc­tive fam­ily gath­er­ings in his­tory. When did it start?

RF: We started our annual pro­duc­tions in 1990 and have con­tin­ued ever since. There’s about a hun­dred fam­ily mem­bers and friends, includ­ing the vol­un­teers of Delancy Street.

GFB: The name, “Friends Of…”, is a unique name. What does it mean?

RF: It’s because we per­form at dif­fer­ent places includ­ing Janet Pomeroy Cen­ter, so we call our­selves the “Friends Of ‘the Janet Pomeroy Cen­ter’”. If we per­form at Galileo it would be “Friends Of ‘Galileo’”.

GFB: Ah yes, that makes sense. With school, sports and prep­ping for this play last semes­ter. Did you sleep at all?

RF: I slept in coach Mark’s art class. (We both laughed.) Just kid­ding, I didn’t have his class but I’m sure it’s an excel­lent class. Last semes­ter was def­i­nitely chal­leng­ing, but through the year’s of this expe­ri­ence it has taught me to pri­or­i­tize my time and to remain focused on my goal.

GFB: Okay, great job on the brownie points with the coach. What were some  other chal­lenges besides time management?

RF: What are brownie points?

GFB: You know, it’s like a touch­down but sweeter.

RF: Huh? Must be old-people humor. Well, to answer your ques­tion about chal­lenges, the most chal­leng­ing thing was get­ting the job done and doing it right; com­plet­ing a lot of work in a short time, work­ing with other actors to present our lines, and incor­po­rat­ing com­ments from oth­ers to improve, all the while try­ing to bal­ance my schoolwork.

GFB: That’s a huge load. Do you think our foot­ball team can do this?

RF: Yes!  Foot­ball, like my family’s pro­duc­tions, teaches us to work together to pro­duce the best show we can and to over­come any poten­tial obsta­cles in a pos­i­tive way.  In foot­ball, we review tapes of our past encoun­ters with a cer­tain team to find mis­takes and ways to improve.  In the­ater, we also review video footage of our shows from yes­ter­day or the day before, pick­ing at every lit­tle hand move­ment, body pos­ture, and expres­sion that would need improve­ment. It would be fun if the foot­ball team gave it a shot.

GFB: How about invit­ing 3 NFL play­ers to join us. Who would you pick?

RF: I would choose Jim Har­baugh, Joe Mon­tana, and Pey­ton Man­ning.  Each of these play­ers showed deter­mi­na­tion, never giv­ing up, and a moti­va­tion to improve.

GFB: I see. They’re all quar­ter­backs. Wouldn’t it be more excit­ing to have some 300 pound offen­sive line­men dance across the stage?

RF: Haha, prob­a­bly but I don’t want to see coach Mark and coach Don end up in the hospital.

GFB: Right, good think­ing. How about your kids in the future, will you do the same with them?

RF: Yes, absolutely. I believe this because a per­son who puts wor­thy val­ues into action can grow as a person.

GFB: That’s a great quote right there-worthy val­ues and growth. What advice can you give to a rookie, ready to sing and dance?

RF: Be will­ing to take advice and to be fully com­mit­ted to doing some­thing ben­e­fi­cial for others.

GFB: So, you did 8 shows in 4 days. What’s next? Hollywood?

RF: No, Hol­ly­wood didn’t call yet. We have one show lined up in Decem­ber in the Tenderloin.

GFB: That’s after the foot­ball sea­son. Looks like you can focus on being a foot­ball player for now and try to enjoy your senior year of high school.

RF: I can’t wait to get on the field and get bet­ter as a player.

GFB: That sounds good. We’re look­ing for­ward to see­ing you con­tribute in the foot­ball pro­gram. Thanks for your time.

RF: Not a prob­lem. Thanks for writ­ing the article.

GFB: There you have it folks! Ran­dall Fung, senior at Galileo, actor, foot­ball player, and all-around good guy.

*Ran­dall is the hon­orary first player fea­tured in what we hope would be a reg­u­lar col­umn for Galileo Foot­ball titled, “Fea­tured Lion”.

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