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‘I worked my socks off to be here’ - actor’s journey from Norfolk to New York

PUBLISHED: 15:40 17 February 2020 | UPDATED: 08:09 18 February 2020

Theatre artist Han-Jie Chow moved from Norfolk to New York. Picture: Eileen Emond

Theatre artist Han-Jie Chow moved from Norfolk to New York. Picture: Eileen Emond

Archant

Years of hard work are paying off for a Norfolk theatre-lover, who is now making a living under the bright lights of New York’s Broadway.

Theatre artist Han-Jie Chow moved from Norfolk to New York. Picture: Mark WyvilleTheatre artist Han-Jie Chow moved from Norfolk to New York. Picture: Mark Wyville

Han-Jie Chow, 30 was born in Singapore but moved to South Raynham, outside Fakenham, when he was ten after his mum met a man working as a contractor at the same bank she worked at.

He was always passionate about acting but thought he could never do it as a job. He said: "I feel very fortunate and lucky. But I worked my socks off to be here, I did a lot of free work to be where I am now."

He is currently working in the costume department on the Broadway adaptation of Sing Street after graduating from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. He also interned at New York Theater Workshop - were musicals like Rent and Hadestown started.

During his youth, he volunteered at the Westacre Theatre in King's Lynn where he began to fall in love with the art.

Theatre artist Han-Jie Chow moved from Norfolk to New York.  Picture: Mark WyvilleTheatre artist Han-Jie Chow moved from Norfolk to New York. Picture: Mark Wyville

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Mr Chow went to Fakenham college and had plans to go onto university. However, being a Singaporean citizen he had to return home when he was 18 to serve two years in the army.

When he returned, he went to Bangor University in North Wales and studied French and psychology, and also took up drama as a hobby.

He said: "Whilst at uni, I did some theatre classes in my own time, and drama society was a passion of mine but never thought I could do it professionally."

Theatre artist Han-Jie Chow moved from Norfolk to New York. Picture: Mark WyvilleTheatre artist Han-Jie Chow moved from Norfolk to New York. Picture: Mark Wyville

Mr Chow decided that he would follow his passion and applied for a master's in drama at East15 at the University of Essex.

He said that although eh did not have any professional training: "I sent my uni a three-page cover letter convincing them to send me for a year abroad in New York."

Five-and-a-half years later Mr Chow is still living in New York. He said: "I was only meant to be for a year. But, I fell in love with the city.

Mr Chow is currently working on a audio drama series, and he believes he is in the right place to fulfill his dream.


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