Mui - interview of those days

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[Sing Pao Entertainment Media]   September 27, 1991

 

Anita Mui with so much affection

by  Wan Yue

All these years, she has been living among rumors and under unstable living environment.  Pressure, rumors, fabricated stories keep on attacking her.  Now she will leave her stage work, hoping she will have more time and space for herself, and do something for herself.  She admits only "affection" is the most important in life, that includes country, and personal.  In short, no "affection" no happiness.  This girl is Anita Mui, whom we are so familiar with.

Almost every star has the same path, from dim to bright, and from bright to dim.  Anita Mui, first being looked with contempt, then becomes the shining super star.  When she is sparkling  with the brightest beams, she declared she will retire from stage, and will concentrate in back stage work, wiping away gradually the lights sparkling from herself.

Stop at suitable time

Disregard personal style, just look at the performing skill, Anita Mui is definitely very outstanding on stage; the ever changing images, glamorous costumes, creative dances, excellent singing skill and the charismatic stage style,   plus her accumulated experience gained in the world of entertaining, she can control the atmosphere and the emotion of audience perfectly.  By every movement of her limbs or gesture of her hands, audience are charmed and mesmerized by her.  Standing on the stage, you will know that Anita Mui is the super star that hundred thousands of audience are expecting to see.  But this super star will not show herself on stage again after her concert in HK Coliseum after December of this year.  She will continue to record for albums and work in films, but mainly will concentrate in backstage work.  How can people not feel regret at the  "semi-retirement " of the  music diva?

[Actually not long after  I have entered my career, I already thought about leaving the stage.  Originally I planned to leave at 25, now already a few years late.  I have sung for more than 20 years, it is about time to make a conclusion for my stage life.  A singer should stop after a certain period.  If a singer waits till the time when fans kid him off the stage,  and gets withered due to work, and then returns to sing in the night club or singing parlor,  I feel it's extremely pitiful and cruel.  I'm not fully retired, I just leave the stage.  Then people will still have a fantasy, keeping in memory of those days of Anita Mui on stage, is this much better?]     

That night Anita Mui was working for a film about people of metropolitan life, the tentative name of the film is "Beautiful Flower Full Moon"  (the official name of the film is Savior of the Soul).  Besides,  there are Kenny B, Andy Lau, Aaron work and Gloria Yip.  Ah Mui has to play a role of 2 sisters.  Anita Mui was in a low cut dress in orange color, wearing a pony tail tied up with a long scarf hanging all the way down to the waist; her waist was wrapped in a floral scarf;  and her make up was the mature "erotic" type;  all of a sudden people would recall her concert of the "witch" era, and her ever changing images.  But after the concert of this year, people won't see such scenes any more.  When she was slowly talking about the farewell concert, I felt more sentimental.

Even feeling attached, still have to go

[No feeling of attachment when you leave the fulfilling satisfaction from the starry stage?]        

[Of course I will feel bad to leave, but this brings me great pressure too.  I demand a very high standard from myself.  I really care how people look at me.  When I sing one song, people will say no problem, but I feel they are just comforting me.  After every performance, I can't fall asleep at night, because I will review if I can make any improvement in certain areas.  I understand myself, actually I can do better, maybe not enough time, or maybe not enough rehearsal, so the performance not up to my expectation.  Therefore every time I give myself hard time, and I feel great pressure.     

[You can stand to leave your fans?]

[No, definitely not.]  She replied immediately.

[Actually I am a person of inferior complex.  I find my confidence only when I stand on the stage, that has a great influence on my life.  Today I have to put down the thing that helps me to build up my confidence, I don't know if I can find my confidence if I walk different road.  But if I don't do it today, in future when I'm going downhill, I might even lose the little confidence I have.  So might as well try some other things when I still have my confidence, this might be a smart choice.]  She laughed lightly.    

[But for the fans, especially those loyal fans, really hard to leave them.]  She stopped talking for a little while. [They are not those people who buy the tickets  to see how you "die".  Every time, no matter it is large or small gathering of fans, when I see them, my nose feel sour, I feel like to cry.  Such feeling can't be replaced by other things.  You can't imagine, there is a group of people, no matter what you say, or what you sing, they feel happy;  this feeling brings me happiness not because I think they will bring me money as they come to the concert, it is a simple,  pure pleasure and  happiness.]  She talked about this lightly, but her face already showed the feeling of attachment.

Ah Mui will be less active in the music industry, it is not loss only to the fans.  As Ah Mui is busy for preparing the farewell concert, and also busy for the movie, our interview  could only be taken in the simple dressing room where the shooting of the picture took place.  When the reporters went into the dressing room, there were not enough chairs, Ah Mui immediately gave up her chair, and sat on the box of working tools; suddenly a moth flying towards the reporter, Ah Mui immediately tried to chase away the moth for the reporter.

Many plans

During the interview, Ah Mui chatted happily with the working staff.  All gave her the compliment that her "witch" make up very beautiful, Ah Mui was so happy that she could not close her moth.  Finally her turn to be shot, the director only call her once, she immediately left the dressing room and went to  where the shooting took place.  Interview had to be stopped.  But she still kept on being interviewed while she was walking,  she also asked if they would wait till her next recess.  Just by her sincerity and her serious attitude towards work, that already makes people hard to forget.

[After you retire from the stage, what you plan to do with your excessive time?]

[I hope I can have some development at the back stage work of movie and albums.  Two years later I will be 30, I have to plan for my future.  I only know this field, if I can use my experience to train some new people, would it be better?  Besides training new people, I also want to be director of albums, and other management work; I think, work gradually at back stage, I can learn more things.  Also I will have more time for myself, then I can do some study, or learn something I have never learnt before.

[About filming, if it doesn't hinder my work at back stage, I will try to work for movies, because I have a strong interest in filming.  If possible, I want to play some roles in ancient costumes, such as those very "erotic" type, like the role of "green snake".  I like imaginary role, not practical, not too human type.  It might be because of my character.  I also want to play roles of bad character.  In real life I am already a very down to earth person, movie is dream, is it better to take up a role that I can't be in my real life?  Won't like to act a pretty woman, be a vase, I'd rather not.  When I have time, I will buy some beautiful clothes, have my hair set, I'm still presentable!]  She could not hold but laughing.  When a person is popular, she will  look brighter.  Ah Mui now has achievement in status and in monetary sense, also as  now dressed in light gauze, how can just be "presentable" that simple?

[Honestly speaking, the range for film is wider than singing.  Working for film I can choose roles that are suitable for myself.  don't have to work for films that I can't handle physically, or beyond my energy level; also film is work for a group, singing is performance of an individual, so working for film has less pressure.

Aiming  for balance, won't over demand

Ah Mui said that she is negotiating for 6 to 7 films now, but since the concert is around the corner, really doesn't have too much time.  So to take part in the filming, the soonest will be next year.

[I will continue to release albums.  Fans complain that if I don't release albums then they won't have any songs to listen.]  She was joking, then suddenly became serious: [I feel that I have responsibility towards my fans, I have to take care of them, so I have to release albums.]  Ah Mui loves her fans whole heartedly.

But reality is often very cruel.  Once upon a time, audience hated Ah Mui so much, but today they love her madly; audience change easily, if you don't have shows, they might forget you quickly.  Right now Ah Mui is at the peak, would she feel bad to accept the changing  attitude of the audience?

[I don't ask them to remember me forever, I already prepare that people will forget me.  I continue tol release albums, only for those fans who love my songs, because I feel these people bring me too much beautiful memories.  If I say today I'm leaving, and leave right away, it is unfair to them.  For other people ma, if they like to see then see, if don't like, never mind!]

[My thinking and attitude have already changed now.  When I was in teens, I just rushed forward, working and getting busy were all my life, I didn't understand what was leisure.  I never knew how to stop and enjoy the beautiful things around me, so nervous all the time.  Can't be like that all the time.  Now I am learning and searching how to enjoy being simple, a leisurely life, learn to enjoy family.  Alan taught  me how to keep an aquarium of fish, telling me it will make me happier, and more tranquil, and will have less concerns and illusions.  I also want to help people by involving in more community and charity work.  To live happily is not to earn money, I think happiness only from simplicity can last longer.]

As true as Ah Mui said, when a person already got the glamorous life of luxury, naturally he will long for simple life.  Now Ah Mui is working towards this goal.  Looking at the past,  more than 20 years, seems like half of the life, Ah Mui thinks the most important in life is "affection".

[Every body lives around "affection", including affection for the country, for the family, for the friends and lover.  I am a person with too much "affection".  If there is no "affection" for everything, I will feel so boring.  And this is the thing I can really bring along with me when I leave this world.

Not old, still has chance  

Naturally Ah Mui is a person with affection.  For the country, Ah Mui feels  she lives in such an era that she is lucky to experience big changes.  Since "June 4th", Ah Mui's involvement with China can be witnessed by all.  As for friends, all know that she is liked by people around her, friends all over the world.  As for family, according to Ah Mui, because she had to make money, she has been very independent since she was very young.  Though she loves her family members, she doesn't value them as much as friendship.  The only thing she lacks now is romance.   

[What do you feel about having no love (romance)?]

Touching this topic, Ah Mui's voice dropped, she thought a little while and then said: [Love makes my whole life richer.] Then the  little smile disappeared from her face. [No big deal, I am not 80 yet, I still have chance!]  She laughed again.

[Then do you think love is important to you?]

[Important!] she nodded her head and said: [Love and friendship both very important, can't do without one.  I will try my very best to look for affection from these 2 areas.]

[Have you found your love now?]

[No yet , right now I'm looking for friendship more.]  She was talking less now.

[You can keep friendship even if you don't see each other, but not for love.  How can you look for love that you long for if you are so busy.]

A smile appeared on her face, and said quietly: [After I leave the stage life, I believe I will have more time to take care of this area.       

In December, Ah Mui will have her farewell concert.  The ever changing Anita Mui of stage will go to work at back stage. She will hand her bright torch to the new people of the music industry, and will let her glory of arts  continue .  Under the pen of Pa Sin Yung there is a Yee Shoot Yim forever, in the hearts of music lovers there will be an Anita Mui forever.