Ms Fong Yim Fun



Born Chow Tung Si and also known as Leung Yin Fong, actress and opera artist Fong Yim Fun developed an interest in Cantonese opera at a young age thanks to the influence of her adoptive mother. She apprenticed under Pak Kit Chor at Kwok Sing Theatre and joined Sing Sau Nin Opera Troupe in 1937. In 1941, she played supporting female parts in Yik Kim Chuen’s troupe, with Yik giving her the stage name Fong Yim Fun. She was promoted to principal roles a few years later, at age 16. After the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression, Fong’s distinctive singing style in Nocturnal Sacrifice at Lui Fung Pagoda developed into what came to be known as “the Fong tone”. She was elected “the Queen of Principal Female Roles” in a newspaper contest in 1952. Fong made her first film in 1950. She broadened her repertoire playing in comedies and melodramas, including She Says “No!” to Marriage (1951), Money Will Find Its Way to Come (1952) and Romantic Spell (1953). Fong was a paragon of female wisdom and modesty on-screen. In 1953, she founded Zhili Film Company and adapted her best known opera pieces for the big screen, such as The Nymph of the River Lo (1957), Butterfly Lovers Story of Regret (1958) and The Summer Snow (1959). Fong was also an adept singer; the title song of Belle of Penang (1954) was among her greatest hits. By the time she got married and retired in 1959, Fong had taken part in some 150 films spanning more than 10 years. In 1984, she founded Kwan Fong Charitable Foundation, through which she engages in charitable activities.