People Singapore's heat gets to actress

Chiang Ching during a press conference in Singapore in 1965. She was in town for stage appearances for the movie Trouble On Wedding Night.
Chiang Ching during a press conference in Singapore in 1965. She was in town for stage appearances for the movie Trouble On Wedding Night. ST FILE PHOTO

A Chinese film actress who rose to fame after starring in Seven Fairies (1963), directed by well-known director Li Han-hsiang, was in town this week in 1965 and lamenting the "terribly warm" weather here.

Chiang Ching was here for stage appearances for the film, Trouble On Wedding Night.

The China-born actress, then 19 and based in Hong Kong, fanned herself in an air-conditioned room at a press conference and said: "I have not seen much of Singapore since I arrived, but I do know about the heat."

Chiang, whose Chinese name was written exactly the same way as Chinese leader Mao Zedong's wife Jiang Qing, had enrolled in the Beijing Dance Academy as a child.

Her family later moved to Hong Kong, where she joined a drama troupe that trained performers for Shaw Brothers Studio.

She later moved to Taiwan to develop her film career, along with director Li. The duo made hit movies, including Hsi Shih: The Beauty of Beauties (1965) and Many Enchanting Nights (1966), based on a novel by Taiwanese author Chiung Yao. The latter movie won Chiang a Best Actress Award at `the Golden Horse Awards in 1967.

She married Taiwanese singer Liu Chia-chang in 1966 but they divorced four years later in 1970.

That year, Chiang moved to New York to embark on a dance career. She was the founding director of the Hong Kong Dance Company for a brief period in the early 1980s before freelancing as a choreographer and art director.

She remarried and is said to be based in Sweden.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on December 20, 2015, with the headline 'People Singapore's heat gets to actress'. Print Edition | Subscribe