Meet Star Awards 2017’s Most Popular Male and Female Artistes

Sora Ma and Desmond Ng get lucky with their first nomination, Felicia Chin gets candid about her boyfriend Jeffrey Xu’s loss, and some more

Meet Star Awards 2017’s Most Popular Male and Female Artistes
Meet Star Awards 2017’s Most Popular Male and Female Artistes
17/04/2017

Meet Star Awards 2017’s Most Popular Male and Female Artistes

Photos: Toggle, Lee Lay Na, Don Lee

Last night, we welcomed two new entrants to the Top 10 popularity ranks – Sora Ma and Desmond Ng, who are also first-time nominees, and bade goodbye (temporarily, we’re sure) to the likes of Jeffrey Xu, Xu Bin and Julie Tan, who were all Top 10 winners last year. Lucky for fans of hot favourites Romeo Tan, Desmond Tan, Ian Fang and Ya Hui, who failed to make the list last year, their voting efforts paid off and they’ll finally have a good night’s rest knowing their idols made it in this year.

What do these Top 10 winners have to say about their victories and who do they have to thank for it? We catch up with the newly-crowned Top 10 Most Popular Male and Female Artistes backstage at the media area to find out. Read on for more!

L-R: Kym Ng, Ya Hui, Jayley Woo, Jesseca Liu, Carrie Wong, Paige Chua, Tong Bing Yu, Sora Ma, Felicia Chin, Rebecca Lim

Meet Star Awards 2017’s Most Popular Male and Female Artistes
Meet Star Awards 2017’s Most Popular Male and Female Artistes
17/04/2017

Meet Star Awards 2017’s Most Popular Male and Female Artistes

L-R: Shane Pow, Dennis Chew, Ben Yeo, Romeo Tan, Ian Fang, Desmond Ng, Desmond Tan, Zhang Zhen Huan

Not pictured: Lee Teng, Pornsak

Tong Bing Yu
Tong Bing Yu
17/04/2017

Tong Bing Yu

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Female Artiste awards: 2

“Honestly, I wasn’t nervous at all,” Bing Yu admitted sheepishly after her win. “I didn’t come prepared because I didn’t feel especially lucky today. I actually had a minor accident on the way here today, so I was a little sad when I arrived because I didn’t have enough tickets for my fans to enter the theatre today and they had to leave after the red carpet ended.”

I wanted to reassure them with words like, “If it’s yours, then it’ll come naturally to you; if not, it’s fine as well and we can try again, but they were very nervous about the result.” Bing Yu’s win was so unexpected that she revealed that she didn’t react for the longest time and that the reality that she won only hit her when the people around her asked her to head to the stage to collect her award.

Sharing that she felt especially touched when her name was announced, Bing Yu let on that during her first win in 2014, her fellow actors applauded politely when her name was called; in contrast, they were “really happy and gave me lots of encouragement and hugs this time around – I never thought that two years would make such a difference”.

Carrie Wong
Carrie Wong
17/04/2017

Carrie Wong

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Female Artiste awards: 3

Carrie told us she heaved a huge sigh of relief when her name was announced right after Jayley Woo’s, “I remember mine was the eighth name announced when I picked up the award for the first time, last year I was the seventh person, so I’m really glad to be the fifth person to go on stage this year!” she chuckled, during her backstage interview.

Commenting on 118 co-star Xu Bin’s absence from the top 10 list this year, Carrie said: “I sort of expected it since he told fans and followers not to vote for him this year on social media. I think he has accepted it and I’m sure he’s fine too.”

So what does she think about Julie Tan’s shocking announcement that this would be her last Star Awards ceremony? “Oh, I really didn’t expect this… but she’s a decisive person – just like how she left it all behind when she went to New York for her studies. I’m sure she has her plans and I wish her all the best.”

Felicia Chin
Felicia Chin
17/04/2017

Felicia Chin

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Female Artiste awards: 7

Felicia was spotted pacing up and down backstage when the Top 10 Most Popular Male Artiste winners were being announced, visibly anxious about Jeffrey’s entrance (or absence) in the Top 10 polls this year. When we caught up with her backstage, after the awards ceremony, she shared, “I was looking for a TV to watch the announcement backstage. I felt really horrrible [when he did not win] because I really care about his feelings. He’d always rallies votes for my telepoll number before sharing his, so of course I hope he’ll win this award too…

“I’ll continue to encourage him, I’m sure everyone has seen how hardworking he is. Please continue to support Jeffrey!” said Felicia, who shared that she’ll give her ‘bao bei’ (darling) a hug after the show is over. “You’re the best, bao bei. We all love you.”

Jayley Woo
Jayley Woo
17/04/2017

Jayley Woo

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Female Artiste awards: 2

Picking up her second Top 10 trophy in a row, Jayley revealed that her mind “went blank” once again. Sharing that she has “no idea” what happened when she tripped while she was en route to the stage to give her acceptance speech, her sister Hayley chuckled that her comeback (Jayley did a hair flip) was “really good.”

As with last year, Hayley attended the Star Awards to support both her sister and “darling,” Carrie Wong. Although Jayley wasn’t confident on making it to the Top 10 this year, Hayley was sure of it, calling her little sister’s win a result of “the law of attraction”.

Hayley called the telepoll hotlines whenever she had time to, with Jayley laughing that she “doesn’t want to know how much she spent, because I’ll be in trouble if she claims the amount she spent from me.” Instead, Jayley will treat her sister to a good meal to express her thanks.

Jesseca Liu
Jesseca Liu
17/04/2017

Jesseca Liu

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Female Artiste awards: 6

The first thing Top 10 Most Popular Female Artiste award winner Jesseca is going to go after the awards ceremony is to, well, eat. The slender actress told us that she hasn’t had “a proper meal” for the past week just to be able to fit into this shimmery and slightly see-through dress for the night.

Kym Ng
Kym Ng
17/04/2017

Kym Ng

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Female Artiste awards: 9

Kym is one step away from becoming an All-Time Favourite Artiste, and the pressure is getting both to her and her husband. She let on that he called in over a hundred times for her for the very first time, and that she will be on tenterhooks for next year’s show, where she will possibly earn her tenth and final award.

She also has a “lucky charm” to thank this year – an ace and ten of hearts, which her stylist used to fix her hair prior to the show. “I think I should ask him to sign on the cards, and yes, I’ll definitely keep them!” she chuckled.

Paige Chua
Paige Chua
17/04/2017

Paige Chua

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Female Artiste awards: 3

Paige, who was widely-touted to be the hot favourite to bring home the Best Actress gong, shared that she was “prepared for the worst” and to go home empty-handed. “I actually was rooting for Aileen Tan or Pan Ling Ling, I feel that my loss is justified since I’ve lost to Li Zhen Jie (Aileen),” she chuckled. “Thank you for loving this character, Ou Jinxuan. I hope to continue bringing even better characters to everyone.”

Commenting on Andie’s loss in both the Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor categories, Paige said: “He was one of the leads and my co-star in If Only I Could and he played my older brother in Hero so I really feel upset for him. But he’s the Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor in all our hearts so even if he didn’t get the award, he has won our hearts.”

Rebecca Lim
Rebecca Lim
17/04/2017

Rebecca Lim

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Female Artiste awards: 6

Becks choked back tears during her acceptance speech when she gave a shout out to her family, including her dad. She appeared composed backstage during her media interviews – and was more relaxed than before. Slightly embarrassed about her emotional outburst on stage during her backstage interviews later, she chuckled, “I think I always get emotional when I’m on stage and every year my friends will tell me to act a bit cooler because y’know ‘you should be used to it by now because you’re halfway through! (Laughs) But when I get on stage and I see everybody, I get a bit choked up.”

Best friend Ian Fang gave a special shout out to her when he was on stage receiving his Top 10 Most Popular Male Artiste award, so what does Becks have to say about his return? “I’m really happy for him since he missed out on the award last year. I’m not just happy for him, I’m really happy for Romeo too – and for his Best Supporting Actor award.”

Sora Ma
Sora Ma
17/04/2017

Sora Ma

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Female Artiste awards: 1

Success comes to those who wait. Sora, who received a standing ovation from the veterans when her name was announced, was all smiles backstage after her first Top 10 win. “This is not just a popularity award, it’s also representative of the relationships I have with the people around me… This was given to me by my fans and I have to return their favour too by continuing to be a good actress. I’m very grateful to everyone who has accommodated my straight-talking ways.”

Ya Hui
Ya Hui
17/04/2017

Ya Hui

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Female Artiste awards: 2

After missing out from the list last year, Ya Hui can finally celebrate her return to the popularity ranks with her fanclub, Team Ya Hui. The actress, whose name was called out second last, told Toggle she was worried she might fail to make the cut again. Thankfully, her fans, friends and family’s efforts have paid off this year. “I’m very thankful, extremely grateful. When I didn’t get in the Top 10 ranks, people would always ask me why am I not in the list when I have worked so hard; it didn’t feel good, honestly…

“Hard work pays off, I want to encourage all students and workers to chase their dreams even if naysayers advise against it. I believe you have to prove them wrong,” she said.

Ben Yeo
Ben Yeo
17/04/2017

Ben Yeo

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Male Artiste awards: 2

It’s been a long time coming for Ben Yeo, who has been absent from the Top 20 Most Popular Artistes nominations since his last win in 2012. “When I won my first trophy in 2012, I naturally wanted to win another in 2013. I wasn’t nominated at all in 2013 (…) it was a pretty big setback for me because I expected to be nominated at the very least.”

Revealing that he didn’t do anything out of the ordinary to ensure that he would bring home another trophy this year, he shared that he believes that “maintaining good relationships and being a good host is the best way to do so”.

And the best thing about his win? His two sons will now each have one trophy to play with. “They don’t have to fight over it anymore!” he laughed.

Dennis Chew
Dennis Chew
17/04/2017

Dennis Chew

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Male Artiste awards: 7

Picking up his seventh Top 10 award this year, Dennis chuckled self-deprecatingly when giving his acceptance speech, “This old person needs two young ones to support him while he’s picking up his award, so thank you to Mickey Huang and Jang Hyuk for doing me the honour.”

“I’d like to thank my seniors for teaching me the meaning of getting this award today,” he continued. Making a public shout-out to Zheng Ge Ping, who was not in the Top 48 this year, Dennis declared that his wish is to “pick up our eighth awards together on stage next year.”

Desmond Ng
Desmond Ng
17/04/2017

Desmond Ng

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Male Artiste awards: 1

Shock was written all over Desmond’s face when he was announced as the final winner for the Top 10 Most Popular Male Artiste award. When we caught up with him backstage, the singer-turned-actor was still in a state of shock, or should we say… “shiok”?

“Shock, shiok, sho-ik? It’s a very ‘shiok’ shock,” he laughed. “They told me I should think about my thank you speech at home and I brushed it off. I thought of just having a good time but little did I expect I’d win the award. This is my first year after all – it’s not easy to let everyone see my hard work in one year, but I’m glad I did it.”

Desmond Tan
Desmond Tan
17/04/2017

Desmond Tan

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Male Artiste awards: 2

After missing out on his second trophy in 2015 and his shocking exclusion from the Top 40 nominees last year, Desmond made his triumphant return to the Top 10 this time around.

During his acceptance speech, he likened life to a tea egg, where “flavor can only enter when there are cracks. Having setbacks and being hurt are both important in life, and I have to thank the setbacks and hurt that I’ve gone through in the past two years for the flavour that I now possess.”  

Ian Fang
Ian Fang
17/04/2017

Ian Fang

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Male Artiste awards: 2

Explaining his decision to thank his “best friend” Rebecca Lim during his acceptance speech, Ian mused, “The friendships that some people have is transient, but I feel that for the both of us, we’ve gone through a lot of trials to become what it is today.

“Just like Ah Jie (Zoe Tay) and Chen Han Wei da ge, I hope that we’ll continue to be as close we are now.” As for whether the pair will ever become more than friends, he chuckled, “Who can predict the future?”

Sharing that he is disappointed that his good buddy Jeffrey Xu didn’t manage to snatch a coveted spot this year, Ian continued that Jeffrey “is someone who’s very mentally strong, so I think he’ll be okay. He should be pretty happy that Felicia won.”

Lee Teng
Lee Teng
17/04/2017

Lee Teng

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Male Artiste awards: 5

Being one of the last winners to be revealed last night, Lee Teng confessed that he “felt that he didn’t have a chance to win this year” as the names were being called out. Having collected five trophies under his belt, he shared that he will most likely celebrate his win by eating a good meal in Japan, where he will be jetting off to for an upcoming programme by the time you read this.

Naming Xu Bin as the person he feels most surprised to not see in the Top 10 this year, Lee Teng shared that although Xu Bin asked for his fans not to vote for him this year, Lee Teng personally felt that his fans’ support would have been sufficient to give the younger actor his fourth Top 10 trophy in a row.

Pornsak
Pornsak
17/04/2017

Pornsak

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Male Artiste awards: 6

Poking fun at Mickey Huang, who presented the Top 10 Most Popular Male Artistes along with Jang Hyuk, Pornsak recalled that the fourth variety programme that he filmed was with Mickey.

Specially thanking his 94-year-old father during his acceptance speech, Pornsak was visibly excited to be back in the running for an All-Time Favourite Artiste award after missing out on making the Top 10 last year.

Romeo Tan
Romeo Tan
17/04/2017

Romeo Tan

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Male Artiste awards: 3

After expressing his wish to pick up his Top 10 trophy during his backstage interview following his Best Supporting Actor win, Romeo Tan described his state of mind as “so happy that I simply have no words.” Following his disappointment from being excluded from the list last year, he proudly declared that “the happiness I feel this year makes up for the blow last year.”

Chuckling that he has to thank the aunties and uncles at the kopitiams for his win this year, he let on that a number of them approached him to ask for his telepoll number, saying that they would ask all their friends and family to vote for him as well.

Since entering showbiz seven years ago, this is also the first time that Romeo bagged two awards in a single night, quipping that he “never knew that my arms would be so sore from carrying my trophies”.

Shane Pow
Shane Pow
17/04/2017

Shane Pow

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Male Artiste awards: 3

“To my girlfriend who’s backstage right now, thank you for adding light into my life and showing me the way,” Shane declared during his acceptance speech. Kimberly Wang, who was excitedly waiting backstage, was called over by Kunhua during a post-show interview with Toggle Backstage Live, and Shane gave Kimberly a peck on the cheek after she gave him a congratulatory hug. Aww.

Zhang Zhen Huan
Zhang Zhen Huan
17/04/2017

Zhang Zhen Huan

Total number of Top 10 Most Popular Male Artiste awards: 3

“I’m really lucky that I was the second name to be called this year!” Zhen Huan chuckled as he confessed to feeling the pressure every year when the Top 10 names are called one by one. “I felt like I had to win this year because it’s the first time that my parents came to watch the Star Awards, so I did feel the pressure to have my name called.”

Saying that his loss to Chen Han Wei in the Best Actor category was “only natural”, he shared that being nominated was “a step forward in itself”. With the baby steps he’s taking towards the coveted trophy, he added that he strongly believes that “there will be a day where I finally get the Best Actor award”.

For more stories and videos, visit the Star Awards 2017 official websiteCatch-up on Star Awards and Toggle’s exclusive backstage LIVE coverage.

Related:
Best of Star Awards 2017
Star Awards 2017 Winners List
Star Awards 2017: Walk of Fame
This is my last Star Awards: Julie Tan
Top 10 graduate Joanne Peh “can give birth in peace
Meet Star Awards 2017’s Most Popular Male and Female Artistes
Veterans Zoe Tay, Chen Hanwei, Aileen Tan take centre stage at SA2017
Hot or Not: Star Awards 2017 fashion
What you didn’t see on TV at Star Awards 2017


WATCH Toggle Interviews:
Ya Hui: I owe my fans too much!
The sexiest back-baring dresses at Star Awards 2017
Romeo Tan: I feel that there is hope in showbiz!
Best Evergreen Artiste Xiang Yun was in poor health while filming Peace & Prosperity
Best supporting Actress Aileen Tan is planning something big with her husband?
Jesseca Liu: I have not eaten rice for a week!
What caused Elvin Ng to tear up when he received his All-Time Favourite Artiste Award?
Joanne Peh: I can go give birth in peace now!
Rebecca Lim: Romeo has to treat us to a meal! 
Zoe Tay: Chen Han Wei’s lucky charm is…
Rui En shows her support for Andie Chen
Ben Yeo’s son cried when he received the Top 10 Male Popular Artiste Award!
Lee Teng is surprised that Xu Bin did not get a Top 10 award.
Sora Ma waited 6 years for her Top 10 Female Artiste Award!
Julie Tan says goodbye to Mediacorp and Star Awards
Sora Ma waited 6 years for her Top 10 Most Popular Female Artiste Award! 
Will Quan Yi Fong give up her career to join her daughter in China?
Zhang Zhen Huan’s parents attended this year’s Star Awards!
Will Ian Fang be celebrating his win with Rebecca Lim?
Tong Bing Yu got into a car accident on the way to Star Awards?
Desmond Ng is still in shock over his Top 10 win
How will Felicia Chin encourage Jeffrey Xu after missing out on a Top 10 award?

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