Priscilla Chan

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Mar 4-Mar 7
 

Of all the female artists from Cantopop’s golden age in the 1980s, it’s somewhat surprising that Priscilla Chan remains arguably the most relevant of those still regularly performing. Sandy Lam remains critically successful, what with the four Golden Melody Awards she picked up in 2013 for her album Gaia, but Lam has always found most of her success in Mandarin. So it is that Chan, despite that famous break from music at the height of her fame, reigns supreme as the top sister of Cantopop.

Growing up in Happy Valley, Chan was active as a youngster in various singing contests. Eventually spotted by a talent agency, she was picked up by Polygram Records and released her first album, The Feelings of a Story, in 1984. Chan’s soulful voice made her stand out even in an era dominated by ‘the Madonna of Asia’ Anita Mui. Later, before taking a break and heading to Syracuse to study psychology, Chan released what would be the biggest selling album of 1989, Forever Friends, and the hit single Thousands of Songs.

By the time Chan returned to the local music industry in 1995, she had lost her grounding and a new era of Cantopop idols had risen in her absence – the likes of Faye Wong and Vivian Chow. Although she never reached the same heights as she did in her 80s heyday, the same can be said of the Cantonese music industry in general. Nonetheless, Chan has never given up on music and Hong Kong audiences. After a fallow period between 2003-2013, she has delivered solid new albums in the shape of 2014’s By Heart and last year’s Evolve. One of Cantopop’s true greats, Chan may not be as omnipresent as she once was, but given both her classics and new material, she’s still well worth your time. Evelyn Lam

Priscilla Chan Mar 4-7, Hong Kong Coliseum. Tickets: $280-$680; urbtix.hk.

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