Ya Hui Be­ing a go-get­ter paid off for her

Tena­cious and go-get­ting, ac­tress Ya Hui tells about her CH­ERYL LEONG many at­tempts to get on tele­vi­sion, be­fore fi­nally suc­ceed­ing.

Simply Her (Singapore) - - Front Page -

Ya Hui

was just ve years old when she de­cided she was go­ing to be on tele­vi­sion one day. It was 1993 and the tot was watch­ing Ivy Lee com­pete on Star Search. “I told my par­ents af­ter­wards that when I turned 18 (the min­i­mum age to join the con­test), I was go­ing to be a star,” she chuck­les.

Her par­ents laughed it off, putting it down to the funny, adorable things chil­dren say. But Ya Hui never for­got, and never stopped yearn­ing for her shot at fame. She re­counts the time she pestered her mother to buy a video­cas­sette recorder – to record her rst TV ap­pear­ance, in a man­ner of speak­ing.

“I did Chi­nese Dance as a cocur­ric­u­lar ac­tiv­ity in sec­ondary school. That year, we put up a per­for­mance on Ve­sak Day at the Sin­ga­pore In­door Sta­dium. It was lmed ‘live’ and I was so pleased to ap­pear on screen – I watched that clip ev­ery day.”

In­ci­den­tal TV ex­po­sure aside, the go-get­ter even de­vised var­i­ous strate­gies to get her chance in the spot­light. Once, the now-27year-old found out that a va­ri­ety show was look­ing for girls with the best smile. Drop­ping ev­ery­thing she was do­ing, the tena­cious girl high­tailed it to the lm­ing lo­ca­tion to look for the pro­gramme hosts. “When I spotted them, I ‘ca­su­ally’ walked past them, ash­ing my best smile. But they just ig­nored me! Even now, I still think it’s their loss,” she jokes.

Her next two tries at star­dom came to naught as well. She got booted out af­ter the sec­ond round of au­di­tions for The New Paper New Face con­test in 2005, and didn’t qual­ify for the Miss Sin­ga­pore Uni­verse se­lec­tions, even af­ter work­ing up the courage to wear a bikini for the rst time. “I didn’t dare to tell my par­ents I’d forked out $120 – a sub­stan­tial sum to me then – just for a bikini. And I didn’t even make it past the rst round!”

Re­fus­ing to give up, Ya Hui made one last bid for her dream. She en­tered Star Search in 2007 – she didn’t win the top prize, but people no­ticed how she shone on screen. And she won the Miss Tele­genic Award, which kick­started her act­ing ca­reer. It’s been seven years since, and the rest, as they say, is his­tory.

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