Welcome to another episode of Artist Conversations. Each week, we get up close and personal with an artist and learn about them and their craft. This week, we speak to Singaporean actor & singer Chia De Zhong!
De Zhong is a bilingual actor and singer who has starred in various Singaporean television dramas, performing in both English and Mandarin. He is a talented singer and pianist, as well as a seasoned emcee who has hosted various large-scale public events.
I first met De Zhong in high school in Singapore, and I've always remembered him for his outgoing, energetic and dynamic personality. I’ve always thought him a very brave character who’s never afraid of the limelight or its judgmental gaze. I think so much of that positive energy really goes into each of his performances, so that he’s able to light up every stage he performs at and bring life to each party he hosts.
Although usually known for his comedic presence and exuberant personality, De Zhong reveals a much more delicate side in this interview as he opens up about the bullying he faced in school from his peers and even a teacher. These experiences, however, have only made him a better artiste; vulnerability, he explains, is a fundamental part of being an actor, and these painful encounters have helped deepen his appreciation for the human experience.
"These (bullying) incidents really made me doubt my abilities as a performer, but somehow... I just persevered. It's good to have a stubborn streak in you."
"Even though these incidents were traumatic when I was younger, they developed in me a kind of resilience... I learnt that you don't really have to care what other people think of you, as long as you do your best... Once you get through all these things, be proud of what you've achieved and don't look back." - De Zhong
On a much lighter note, De Zhong also demonstrates how to cry on demand, and performs an original piano piece for us.
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Check out the rest of our 'Artist Conversations' to hear the stories of filmmakers, painters, graphic designers, writers, and many more.