'I don't have the heart to criticise them': Jacky Cheung on why he rejected 9-digit pay to be mentor on singing competition

'I don't have the heart to criticise them': Jacky Cheung on why he rejected 9-digit pay to be mentor on singing competition
Jacky Cheung turned down an offer to mentor and judge in a competitive singing show where he would have been paid a 9-figure sum.
PHOTO: Screengrab/YouTube/TVB USA Official

Not even this large sum of money is enough to sway Jacky Cheung's soft spot for competitive singers.

Jacky revealed in an episode of the new Hong Kong talk show We Love This Place why he rejected a position as judge and mentor on a singing competition show that came with a nine-figure pay. It was not mentioned which currency the money is calculated in. 

The 61-year-old Hong Kong pop legend said: "I started my career through competitions, so I know that competitions aren't easy. 

"Everyone who has the courage to sing on stage — even though they aren't professional singers — is already amazing for being daring enough to sing in front of a large crowd. I don't have the heart to criticise them."

Jacky, now dubbed the God of Songs, found success after winning the Amateur 18-Hong Kong district singing contest in 1984 where he outlasted 10,000 talents.

A year prior, Jacky experienced defeat while participating in a singing competition on TVB's Happy Tonight, facing harsh criticism for a lacklustre performance with his "ending notes" being far too "sloppy".


It wasn't just that he is uncomfortable with being the bearer of bad news, however.

Jacky also reasoned that he didn't have the "skills required to be a mentor", as he did not attend an orthodox music school and had no professional training.

Feeling like he "really didn't understand" and didn't know how to teach others to sing, he said he wasn't able to take on the role of a mentor for the show as he "didn't have the skills".

However, he still expressed his support and happiness, cheering on those bravely chasing their dreams and participating in competitions.

'I was forced to act'

In the talk show, Jacky also shared his thoughts with host Frederick Ma on his transition from singing to acting, revealing that he originally had no intention to become an actor.

Sales had plummeted after his fourth record, and each record only had one or two hit songs, Jacky shared.

As he watched the sales numbers dip from 200,000 to 20,000, Jacky, who was the breadwinner of his household, said to himself: "Oh no, this won't do."


"I was forced to act," he said, explaining that he was invited to act in a film. 

Jacky will be in Singapore for his Jacky Cheung 60+ Concert Tour for six shows over two weekends from July 14 to 16 and 21 to 23 at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.

Tickets begin at $168 (excluding a $4 booking fee) and will be available for sale on ticketmaster.sg and at all Singpost outlets from this Wednesday (April 26) 10am.

ALSO READ: 'I'm being far-sighted': Stephen Wong explains decision to leave TVB after 21 years


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