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Ling Po Ivy

Name: Ling Po Ivy
Native name: 凌波
Given name: Jun Hai Tang
Also Known as: Ling Bo Ling Boh Ivy Ling Ling Po Ling2 Po1 Xiao Juan
Nationality: Hong Konger
Gender: Female
Born: November 16, 1939

Ivy is one of the most famous actresses in Chinese cinema and during the 1960’s she was in a series of films that are considered classics. Though thought of today (by Western audiences) to some degree for her action films, she was an all around actress – most famous in her day for her Chinese Opera films in which she generally played a male.
Ivy Ling Po, originally known as Jun Hai-tang, was born in Amoy, in 1940. At the age of 14, she began to appear in dialect movies under the alias of Xiao Juan. In 1950 after the Chinese Civil War was over, her adoptive parents came to HK and within four years Ivy appeared in her first film – Love of Young People.
At this time in HK - films were made in either Cantonese or Mandarin – and tended to have different audiences and different stars. Ivy became one of the top stars of Mandarin films. After a few more films in the 50s, her parents forced her into a marriage with a wealthy older man – but it soon fell apart. Within a few years she returned to film – joined the Shaw Brothers movie empire and her string of successes began.
Ling was discovered by Li Han-hsiang while dubbing Huangmei Opera for Shaw Brothers’ The Dream Of The Red Chamber. She starred in her first renowned movie, The Love Eterne, later that year. Most of Ling’s movies were Huangmei Opera in which she usually appeared in male roles. Ling became the leading figure of the Huangmei Opera genre and the most favorite film star. The most representative ones which Ling starred in including Three Smiles and The Love Eterne.
The Love Eterne was a huge box-office success in Taiwan. The movie also won Ling the Special Performance Award at the 2nd Golden Horse Awards. Even today, Taiwanese media referred Ling as “Brother Liang,” her role in The Love Eterne. Later, Ling was named the Best Actress at the 11th Asian Film Festival for her performance in Lady General Hua Mu-Lan. She was also named Best Actress at the 6th Golden Horse Awards for Too Late For Love, confirming her status as the leading cast in Chinese movies.
She later married another well known actor – Chin Han (not the Chin Han from the 70s) – and though she was basically retired by 1971 she still made a few more appearances.
Gifted with her singing and acting talent, she sang and acted in all musicals which she starred. Ling emigrated to Canada with her family in 1989 and rarely appeared on the screen.

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