Chantalle Ng might have received a lot of attention as a second-gen artiste and daughter to veteran actress Lin Meijiao. But like many rookie actors, she’s had to learn the ropes and work her way up as well. 

The My Star Bride celebrity recently shared in an interview with Icon Singapore that she’s been fortunate to be able to spend time with retired actor Xie Shaoguang who offered her some valuable advice. 

“Shaoguang da ge (big brother) is an excellent actor. When I first started acting, I always had a lot of questions for him. This wasn’t an official acting class, it was just a private three-day exchange, where he shared his acting experiences with me,” the 26-year-old said.

“My biggest takeaway was how to let myself become the character and not just play the role. Because when you truly become the character, her speech and actions become second nature. I’m very thankful for such an opportunity.” 

Of course, mum also taught her a thing or two — while also giving her the liberty to explore on her own. 

“If I am cast in a new role or encounter something that I don’t understand, I’ll discuss it with her,” said Chantalle. “But once filming starts, she doesn’t discuss much about acting.” 

Equipped with advice from her seniors, she said she’s now found her own philosophy about acting.

“I believe you must step into the role to experience the character’s feelings. Even if you deliver the lines well and manage to shed tears, if you lack empathy, the end product will not be good.” 

She added she would ask the director if she could re-shoot a scene if she’s not satisfied with her delivery.

“I don’t want to lie to myself or to the audience. Some directors might think the scene was done well but I would still request to do it again, so that he has one more option.” 

On learning to embrace her flaws 

Apart from perfecting her craft as an actress, Chantalle is also becoming comfortable being in the public eye. 

“I am slowly learning to accept the good and bad parts of myself. I used to think I had to be slimmer and my face had to be sharper. The public expects more of actors. In front of the camera, my face tends to look rounder but, now, I think that’s okay.” 

She shared that a director once teased her about her looks, saying she isn’t very pretty. Thankfully, she took the comment in her stride and responded laughingly: “Are you kidding?” 

“I’ve asked myself before if I cared [about comments like these], but they don’t really bother me because I’ve reached a point where I feel very free and confident about myself. I feel a lot happier living like this.” 

On top of that, Chantalle’s also not afraid of sharing her emotions with those around her — colleagues included. 

“I’m someone who lets my guard down very easily and I tend to make friends with whoever I talk to. I’m not wary of my friends in showbiz, neither will I intentionally hide my feelings from people. I’m very open about expressing how I feel, maybe it’s because of my identity as an actress, I’ve gotten used to sharing.”

This article was first published in AsiaOne.