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Run for your lives! The zombies are here

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Zombie Run 2014

A runner trying to escape the grasp of two zombies during the zombie-themed run, Run For Your Lives. (Photo by VoxSports)

Riding on a year of novelty races last year, Run For Your Lives claims to be the original zombie-themed run that started in the United States. With staff equipped with over 15 years of experience in the field on hand to see things through, the race was determined to be a success. 

And judging by the over 10,000 strong crowd that thronged the Marina Bay area on Saturday, Singapore lapped it up. 

Singapore is the first stop of the Run For Your Lives’ Asia Tour, with Malaysia followed by Taipei and Kao Shiung in Taiwan being the next few destinations. But what is the key ingredient to a successful zombie meat fest? The zombies of course. Here is a look behind the blood and gore.

To ensure a smooth and efficient transformation process for the zombies, the transformation tent was organised into stations where volunteers traversed to get each step of their make-up done.

The first step in the process was to obtain a rugged look by cutting one’s clothes. Then, the first make-up artist applied base make-up to get the perfect sunken, dead look. Shadowing and darker details were added at the next stop, and the last stop consisted of splattering blood on the torn clothes and smearing it on the face and body.

With students and trainers from the School of Makeup on site, the zombies-to-be were in good hands. To prepare for the event, students had to attend a two-day “special zombie classes” to understand and practice the role they will have and how to make the zombies look scarier.

Julia Ong, one of the instructors from the school, shared some issues they had to deal with to ensure the transformations were a success: “This event took around a month to organise. We had manpower issues so we had to plan what each station will do… it’s not easy." 

On the most tedious part of the process, she said: “We had to mix a lot of blood for the container... it took about two weeks to make all that blood.”

However, she praised the organisers, saying they did well being hands-on in the planning process, having “came two times to try out” the transformation and “discuss everything”. 

Tay Chin Nyap, 31, a zombie who had just completed his transformations, was similarly pleased with the event. 

“It’s something different. I mean you have so many events… We participated in Race The Dead but I think this event is better.” 

His friend, Chng Lee Toong, agreed, saying: “It’s really fun to have the make-up on.”

Felicia Singgih, 15, who volunteered as a zombie at the persuasion of her friend, said: “I thought it was quite interesting for the experience… to have some fun and try how this event works out.”

Likewise, she sang praises of the event. 

“The make-up’s really good and realistic, the process was very organised and quick and I think that’s how it should be.” 

Although many zombies were first-time participants, they expressed willingness to return after the pleasant experience. 

Tina Kramer, also 15, said: “It’s amazing, my first time doing this… Beyond my expectations.”

“The transformation’s fun because you go from station to station, and you don’t know what to expect from each station but less than 5 minutes and it’s done… I will definitely do this again.” 

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