Liza Wang

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This article is about the Hong Kong entertainer. It is not to be confused with the American gymnast Lisa Wang.
Liza Wang Ming-chuen
LizaWangOperapic.jpg
Liza Wang performing in a Chinese opera outfit
Chinese name 汪明荃
Pinyin wāng míngquán (Mandarin)
Jyutping wong1 ming4 cyun4 (Cantonese)
Origin  Hong Kong
Born (1947-08-28) 28 August 1947 (age 67)
 Republic of China Chongming County, Republic of China
Other name(s) The Big Sister[1]
Occupation Actress, Singer, MC
Genre(s) Cantopop, Chinese Opera
Instrument(s) Singing
Years active 1967-present
Spouse(s) Lau Cheung Wah (1971 - 1983)
Law Kar-ying (May 2, 2009 - )
Official Website Liza Wang website

Liza Wang Ming-chuen, SBS[2][3][4] (born 28 August 1947) is an accomplished diva, actress and MC from Hong Kong. She is a well-known personality in Chinese-speaking communities. She has been nicknamed "The Big Sister" in the HK entertainment circle.[5] Wang was formerly a delegate in the National People's Congress from 1988 to 1997, she is currently a member of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference.[6]

Entertainment career[edit]

Liza Wang moved to Hong Kong from Shanghai in the autumn of 1956 and her passion for performing arts drove her to sign up for Rediffusion Hong Kong's first Artist Academy class in 1967. Out of the thousands of applicants, the 20-year-old Liza was one of the lucky nine that were handpicked to attend acting classes. Liza was also the first to graduate from the academy and Liza holds the graduation certificate with the serial number: 001.

Television[edit]

As one of the most prolific television actors in Hong Kong, her career has spanned four decades, since 1967. She began working for Rediffusion Television Limited (now Asia Television) until she joined TVB in 1971. She was one of the members of the all-girl music group Four Golden Flowers.[7] Wang initially made her mark in the entertainment industry in drama series. Her success in front of the camera allowed her to work behind the scenes with television productions.

In 2005, she received the Best Actress award during TVB's 38th Anniversary. She received this award the 2nd time for her breakthrough role in Wars of In-laws. Liza Wang received her first Best Actress award for her drama series The Awakening Story in 2001. She celebrated her 40th anniversary in the entertainment industry in 2007.

Singing career[edit]

In parallel with her acting career Wang had, and to some extent still has, a successful singing career. This was a career originally based around albums for her television series consisting of TV theme songs. She has sung in cantopop as well as mandopop songs. Earlier in her career, she performed memorable duets with singer Adam Cheng. She continues to perform TV theme songs such as "東方之珠" for musical series like the 2006 Glittering Days.[8]

Cantonese Opera[edit]

Her love of Cantonese opera led her to experiment with stage musicals, before becoming a fully fledged Cantonese opera actress. Her involvement in this scene greatly contributed to her musical abilities; and it was within the Cantonese opera community that Wang met her longtime partner Law Kar-ying. In 2005 the Sunbeam Theatre in North Point, Hong Kong's only regular venue for Cantonese Opera performances, was planned to close following a change of ownership.[6] Wang decided to negotiate with the new owner, who then promised to extend the contract with the Cantonese Opera groups. Wang then criticized the Government for its lack of support for Cantonese Opera, and the Government promised to adopt Wang's request.

Wang was Chairman of the Chinese Artist Association of Hong Kong (香港八和會館) from 1992 to 1997, then again 2005 to 2009.[6] In 2007 Wang was awarded the Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Award.[6] She was later awarded the Honorary Doctoral of Letters by the City University of Hong Kong to recognize her significant contributions to the community and in particular to the art and cultural development of Hong Kong.

In February 2009 Wang fought for the development rights to restore the North Kowloon Magistracy building (北九龍裁判法院) in Sham Shui Po.[9] The building was originally proposed to be a new Cantonese opera training and performance center. Hong Kong's government granted the bid to the US Savannah College of Art and Design.[9] Wang was upset over the loss, and said the government was only paying lip service to causes such as Cantonese opera. The magistracy building is to be turned into a school specializing in creative and digital media.[9][10]

Political career[edit]

Pan-democrat home return permits request[edit]

Since the 1997 transfer of sovereignty, the Communist Party of China have banned 8 of the 25 Hong Kong pan-democrat legislative councilors. They are barred from the mainland except for tours organized by the government.[11] On March 6, 2008 Wang began publicizing the need to grant 24 Home Return Permit to the pro-democracy lawmakers.[12][13]

2008 Beijing Olympics[edit]

Wang mentioned that it was good timing to invite the democrats to enter mainland China in time for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.[13]

The Pro-Beijing party Democratic Alliance for the Betterment of Hong Kong member Tam Yiu Chung responded that the Olympics was not a good reason for changing what the central government used to do.[citation needed] Her concerns baffled her colleagues in the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference.[1] Democrat member Albert Ho said the issue of a home visit permit was such a rightful thing. It has never been mentioned by any politician but a performer. He appreciates Wang's efforts.[13] Wang is a member, but not a standing committee member of the CPPCC.

Community work[edit]

As a mainstay at the TVB television network, Wang has gained almost legendary status for her efforts not merely as an entertainer but also as a philanthropist with a heart for social works and for improving lives in rural China and other areas. Within Hong Kong, she has also been a MC hosting TVB telethons for Tung Wah Group of Hospitals and many other charities.

Wang, being a two time cancer survivor (first thyroid then breast cancer), she decided to be an executive committee member of the Hong Kong Anti-Cancer Society.[6] A series of informative radio talk shows on RTHK was also hosted where medical specialists were invited to discuss the many types of cancer. She has helped raised charities, awareness and fundings for cancer patients. Recently a free concert was given at Tin Shui Wai for 4,500 residents; the concert was filled to capacity and hundreds were turned away. The crowd prevented guest performers like Miriam Yeung and Denise Ho from arriving on time. Denise Ho ascribed the audience overflow to Wang's popularity.[5]

Personal life[edit]

Liza Wang was married during the height of her career to a businessman. The marriage ended in divorce. In the late 1980s, she met Law Kar-ying, openly acknowledged as her partner for over twenty years, and whom she married on May 2, 2009 in Las Vegas.[14]

Filmography[edit]

Television series
Year Title Role Awards
1974 Eternal Spring
永恆的春天
Mao Yuin Yuin
毛圓圓
1975 The Golden Chrysanthemum
金葉菊
Zhau Yuk Sin
周玉仙
1975 Lady with the Lute
趙五娘
Zhiu Ng Niong
趙五娘
1975 Legend of the Purple Hairpin
紫釵記
Fok Siu Yuk
霍小玉
1976 The Legend of the Book and the Sword
書劍恩仇錄
Fok-ching-tung
霍青桐
1977 A House Is Not a Home
家變
Lok Lam
洛琳
TVB Anniversary Award for All-Time Most Memorable Female Leading Roles
1979 Chor Lau-heung
楚留香
Shum Wai-san
沈慧珊
1980 Yesterday's Glitter
京華春夢
Ho Yin-chau
賀燕秋
1981 Young's Female Warrior
楊門女將
Muk Gui-yin
穆桂英
1982 Love and Passion
萬水千山總是情
Chong Mung-deep
莊夢蝶
1984 Qiu Jin: A Woman To Remember
秋瑾
Qiu Jin
秋瑾
1999 At the Threshold of an Era
創世紀
Fong Kin-ping
方健平
2000 At the Threshold of an Era II
創世紀 II
Fong Kin-ping
方健平
TVB Anniversary Award for My Favourite Television Character
2001 The Awakening Story
婚前昏後
Lam Ho Suet
林皓雪
TVB Anniversary Award for Best Actress
TVB Anniversary Award for My Favourite Television Character
2004 Blade Heart
血薦軒轅
Tong Bik
唐碧
2005 Wars of In-Laws
我的野蠻奶奶
Hei Tap-Lap Shek Lan
喜塔臘鑠蘭
TVB Anniversary Award for Best Actress
The Unforgettables
名曲滿天星
Nominated - Best Presenter (Top 5)
2006 When Rules Turn Loose
識法代言人
Suen Man-Yee
孫敏儀
Nominated - TVB Anniversary Award for Best Actress
Nominated - TVB Anniversary Award for My Favourite Female Character
Glittering Days
東方之珠
Gam Yin
金燕
Nominated - TVB Anniversary Award for Best Actress (Top 5)
Nominated - TVB Anniversary Award for My Favourite Female Character
2008 Wars of In-Laws II
野蠻奶奶大戰戈師奶
Gwo Bik
戈碧
When Easterly Showers Fall on the Sunny West
東山飄雨西關晴
Chong Fung-yi
莊鳳儀
Nominated - TVB Anniversary Award for Best Actress
2010 OL Supreme
女皇辦公室
Lui Siu-fung
雷小鳳
Nominated - TVB Anniversary Award for Best Actress
Nominated - TVB Anniversary Award for My Favourite Female Character
Home Troopers
居家兵團
Lai Ka-ka
黎嘉嘉
Nominated - TVB Anniversary Award for Best Actress (Top 5)
2011 Super Snoops
荃加福祿壽探案
Sun Chiu-tung
辛潮彤
Nominated - TVB Anniversary Award for My Favourite Female Character
2012 Divas in Distress
巴不得媽媽
Sheung Ying-hung
商映紅
Nominated - TVB Anniversary Award for Best Actress
2013 Across Heaven and Earth
縱橫天地
Kwan Yeuk-nam
關若男
filming

Acting Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Series Result
1999 TVB Anniversary Awards All-Time Most Memorable Female Leading Roles A House is not a Home Won
2000 TVB Anniversary Awards My Favourite Television Character At the Threshold of an Era II Won
2001 TVB Anniversary Awards Best Actress The Awakening Story Won
My Favourite Television Character Won
2005 TVB Anniversary Awards Best Actress War of In-Laws Won
2006 TVB Anniversary Awards Best Actress When Rules Turn Loose Nominated
My Favourite Female Character Nominated
2007 TVB Anniversary Awards Best Actress Glittering Days Nominated
My Favourite Female Character Nominated
2008 TVB Anniversary Awards Best Actress War of In-Laws II Top 5
My Favourite Female Character Nominated
2009 TVB Anniversary Awards Best Actress When Easterly Showers Fall on the Sunny West Nominated
2010 TVB Anniversary Awards Best Actress OL Supreme Nominated
My Favourite Female Character Nominated
Best Host Fun With Liza and Gods Won
2011 TVB Anniversary Awards Best Actress Home Troopers Top 5
My Favourite Female Character Super Snoops Nominated

Honors[edit]

  • Silver Bauhinia Star (2004)[4]
  • TVB Best Actress (2001, 2005)
  • RTHK Gold Needle Award (2005)
  • Mont Blanc de la Culture International Award (2007)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b The standard HK "The standard HK". Wang in Big step on home permits. Retrieved on 2008-03-07.
  2. ^ Loh, Christine (2010). Underground Front: The Chinese Communist Party in Hong Kong. Hong Kong University Press. p. 154. Retrieved 11 December 2014 – via Google Book. 
  3. ^ "Wang still singing a flat tune". The Standard. 30 June 2014. Retrieved 11 December 2014. 
  4. ^ a b http://www.scmp.com/article/461488/bauhinia-honours-citys-sars-heroes
  5. ^ a b Xinhuanet. "Xinhuanet". Fans jam-pack Liza Wang's free concert. Retrieved on 2008-03-10.
  6. ^ a b c d e Cityu.edu.hk "Cityu.edu.hk". 城大將頒授榮譽博士學位予四位領袖. Retrieved on 2008-03-10.
  7. ^ Television Broadcasts Limited TVB - Lydia Shum exclusive - 東張西望之永恆的開心果 - 肥姐 - 02-21-2008.
  8. ^ First for Music News. "NME". Liza Wang videos. Retrieved on 2008-03-10.
  9. ^ a b c The Standard HK. "The Standard.com". http://www.thestandard.com.hk/news_detail.asp?pp_cat=30&art_id=78355&sid=22755290&con_type=3. Retrieved on 2009-03-13.
  10. ^ "Yahoo". 八和落選 汪明荃轟黑箱作業 Retrieved on 2009-03-13
  11. ^ Scmp. "Scmp". End democrats' travel ban, delegate urges. Retrieved on 2008-03-10.
  12. ^ The standard HK. "The standard HK". Wang in Big step on home permits. Retrieved on 2008-03-10.
  13. ^ a b c d The standard HK. "The standard HK". TV star hopes home visits can turn democrats into patriots Retrieved on 2008-03-10
  14. ^ "New bride: 61-year-old Liza Wang". China Daily. May 5, 2009. Retrieved May 7, 2009. 

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
TVB Anniversary Awards
Preceded by
Carol Cheng
for War of the Genders
Best Actress
2001
for The Awakening Story
Succeeded by
Flora Chan
for Family Man
Preceded by
Gigi Lai
for War and Beauty
Best Actress
2005
for Wars of In-laws
Succeeded by
Charmaine Sheh
for Maidens' Vow
RTHK Top 10 Chinese Golden Songs Award
Preceded by
Richard Lam
Golden Needle Award
2004
Succeeded by
Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra