Back To The Olden Days
At P Ramlee Gallery
P Ramlee (Teuku Nyak Zakaria bin Teuku Nyak Puteh) was born on 22 March 1929 at lot 2180, now known as Jalan P. Ramlee, Penang.

His father, a sailor from Lho' Seumawe, Acheh came to Penang in 1925 and married Che Mah bt Hussein of Kubang Buaya, Butterworth.

Fast forward to 1948 and Ramlee, now a 19 year-old pimpled teen, accepted an offer to sing and act for the Shaw Brothers Malay Film Production company in Singapore. As it turned out, this fateful moment was to be the first flowering of a romance with the world of film that would last three decades.

One could say that destiny played a part in
P Ramlee's climb to fame, but it was really his innate talent, hard work and perseverance more than anything else that catapulted him into fame and fortune.

P. Ramlee's house: Indoor display
The indoor display highlights various aspects of P Ramlee's life. The displays are grouped as follow:

Introduction: This section takes the viewer on a journey through P. Ramlee's life from childhood up to the time he left for Singapore.

Centre space: The centre space (ruang tengah) showcases various musical instruments as well as photographs relating to his involvement in the world of arts and sports.

Bedroom: The bedroom has an old-fashioned iron bed, table and mirror, and items of daily use in the life of P. Ramlee. There is also an iron trunk used for storing clothing.

Kitchen: The kitchen is set-up with different types of utensils for daily use.

P. Ramlee's house: Outdoor display
The most interesting item on show is the old bicycle P. Ramlee rode before his rise to fame, preserved in all its timeworn splendour. Thankfully, no attempt has been made to spruce it up. One can almost imagine Ramlee whistling and writing tunes in his head as he rode it around.

The P Ramlee Gallery
Within the same compound is the modern yet traditional "Kompleks Pustaka Warisan Seni" which houses the P Ramlee Gallery. The gallery displays memorabilia of all kinds – Ramlee's old flute, his violin, his favourite shirts, his sunglasses, even the suitcase he brought along to studios and during shoots.

There are also many old photographs, posters of his movies and the actual film roll casing that contained some of his movie reels.

An old typewriter used by Ramlee to record his lyrics is displayed in a glass showcase. Beside it is an original score inked by the star himself of his song Dimana Kan Ku Cari Ganti.

Perhaps it is out of respect or simply a feeling of awe, but an unmistakable hush descends when anyone steps into the gallery and the house.

Related Topic:
  • Where lies the heart of a star – the writer visits Tan Sri P. Ramlee's birthplace and shares the vibes at the original site that ushered Malaysia's greatest screen idol. Click here for full story.

P Ramlee Gallery Map

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Opening Hour:
Tuesday to Sunday – 10:00am to 5:00pm
Friday – 10:00pm to 12:00noon, 3:00pm to 5:00pm
Monday – Closed except during public and school holidays

Screening of P. Ramlee movies
Friday to Sunday  – 10:00am to 12:00pm
Admission is FREE!

Getting There:
Rumah kelahiran P. Ramlee
Lot 2180, Jalan P. Ramlee, 10460 Penang
Tel: 604-281 7484

Written by photographed by Adrian Cheah
Courtesy of © All rights reserved