Remembering Lea Salonga as Kim in “Miss Saigon” makes one go back to the 17 year old, simple and innocent girl in 1989, who had breezed into the audition room of Cameron Mackintosh and sang “Own My Own” from the play, Les Miserables.”
Cameron and company later asked her to sing “Sun and Moon”, which she did splendidly and with ease. The panel were visibly impressed, “That was beautiful!”
Lea disclosed later – in not so many words – that whether she got the part or not, it was still a great learning experience for her. This explained why she was so relaxed and confident during the auditions.
After a series of more “assessments”, Lea Salonga got the part, and she played Kim when “Miss Saigon” premiered in London. As “Miss Saigon” went on, her popularity grew by leaps and bounds, with the play turning into a hit in London.
“Miss Saigon” went on to Broadway, and Lea Salonga continued to earn the respect of people in the entertainment industry, and fans all over the world.
Lea turned into a world famous stage actress in Broadway, interviewed by well-known personalities, and invited to popular TV shows.
Lea earned the ultimate recognition for her talent when she won the Tony Awards for her role as Kim, a dream she thought would never come true. Eventually, she also won the Olivier and Outer Critic Awards, to name a few of her achievements.
She performed in Les Miserables as Eponine and Fantine and was the first Asian to ever perform the part. Cameron Mackintosh’s faith in her talent is evident by casting her in the play.
Recently, Lea Salonga is performing in “God of Carnage” in Singapore. This play would run from November 6 to November 25, 2012.
She got married to Robert Charles Chien in 2004 and they have a daughter. Lea Salonga, now 41, has grown into a fulfilled woman, who has apparently reaped success, not only as an artist, but as a married woman, as well.
This November, “Miss Saigon’s” big gun Cameron Mackintosh is back in Manila to audition another Kim for a revival of the play.
Lea Salonga’s advice for those who are presently auditioning for “Miss Saigon” is to be natural, and to be “themselves.”