Miracle kid Noah

Miracle kid Noah
Family time is important for Mr Tony Yap, his wife Alice and their actor son Noah, who had a risky birth as a premature baby.

Actor Noah Yap's parents support his decision to quit school to pursue a full-time career in show business.

One of the stars in Jack Neo's phenomenally successful Ah Boys To Men (2012/2013), he decided to quit his theatre studies at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts last year to film The Lion Men, another of Neo's movies.

Noah's father Tony Yap, 54, who owns a firm constructing sports facilities, says: "I believe that doing what you like is the most important. We should always think about what we can offer rather than what we are receiving."

Noah's decision to forgo school has turned out to be practical. In August, he is scheduled to start filming a new movie, Ah Boys To Frogmen, about the Republic of Singapore Navy's elite Naval Diving Unit.

The project, also directed by Neo, reunites the Ah Boys To Men cast and they are set to undergo rigorous training in order to accurately depict what life in the navy is like for the elite force.

Noah, 21, who completed his O levels at Bendemeer Secondary School, is not unduly worried though. "It's going to be one new adventure. Every project is a new experience," he says.

He and his family, including his housewife mother Alice, 49, and 17-year-old brother Sean, live in a house whose location they declined to reveal.

They have all appeared in Noah's humorous self-made YouTube videos, about topics such as things not to do during Chinese New Year and the perks of being a mummy's boy. He has more than 47,400 subscribers to his YouTube account.

"I asked my family to help me if they were free. They were very willing to help with my videos and they were okay with me putting their faces up on YouTube," says Noah. "Even though they were embarrassed, they still helped me. I didn't have to force them to do it."

The name Noah is in the news recently because of the Hollywood movie based on the Bible. How did you come to name him Noah?

Mr Yap: He's a miracle kid to me. His birth weight was only 676g as he was a premature baby. On the day he was born, the doctor actually told my wife and I to be prepared that he might not make it.

I prayed to God - whatever His will for our child, we would submit. After that, I decided to name him Noah, because I think he has a calling.

Mrs Yap: Noah in the Bible is a man whom God favours. We also hope that God will bestow favour on our son, Noah. That's why we gave him the name.

What was your relationship like with him when he was growing up?

Noah: I'm one of the best sons anyone could have.

Mr Yap: Well, he's very active, playful and, sometimes, naughty. I think I spent a lot of time with him until he had his own friends when he was 14 or 15. Then, we spent less time together. I took him to the park and playground almost every night. I wanted him to enjoy his childhood. My parents worked very hard, but didn't spend a lot of time with me. I didn't want this to happen to my children.

My fondest memory of Noah's childhood is coming home and receiving a hug from him when he was six to eight years old. I still wish he would jump on me today. That was a very happy moment for me. I felt that all my hard work paid off at that moment.

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