HYPE G! Stanley Tsang

Interview by Alan Ng
Words by Michael Ma
Photography by Christine Tang
Stanley Tsang speaks to The justalilhype! Crew about his insight of life, along with his goals and aspirations in the future. Stanley is not only an actor, but have also been working hard to become a businessman. With the long list of odd jobs that he has worked for in the past, it’s apparent that in order to be successful not only entails hard work, but proper time management and as Stanley describes, taking opportunities as they come.

Tell us a little more about yourself, in regards to being an actor, behind some of the production also trying to become a businessman.

To start off, I graduated from UBC. It’s a whole different turn, I mean my degree was in Cell Biology and Genetics. At the time, I did not pursue acting at all, but during my second year, I wanted to try something new. Before I did a lot of back stage work for working for the school, and as time goes by, I thought I wanted to act too. But it turned out it wasn’t easy; it’s really hard to work in this industry for a starting person how to hone their craft. It takes at least a few years. Pretty much you’re on your own finding a job. I was lucky to find a McDonald’s commercial, and I went on a TV series for one day called Sanctuary, which was a Sci-fi series.

You also do some of the music and sound production as well; can you talk a little more about that?

I actually do live sound, that’s a little different than sound production. So basically my friends produce it, and does a live show; and after they give me all the tracks, and I prep it up; I prep the microphones, the sound systems. I don’t think a lot of people know about this job, because I don’t think a lot of people know about soundman. Like our job is supposed to be none existence; I mean if some people know you, then there’s something wrong with the music. It’s better to be silent as possible throughout the whole show.

Speaking about acting, and the experience you’ve learned from school how has that influenced you into trying to become a businessman?

I think its human interaction. I’ve done so many odd jobs, I’m every where doing odd jobs. I was just counting and I think I did at least 14 odd jobs. Just counting, I was helping out as a chef at the revolving restaurant, I managed Twinkles the bubble tea place, and I sell clothes at J2, I did sounds, and earlier I did editing for radio station AM 1320. Further back, I managed the night market, and at the Centre of Performing Arts I did stage man there, that’s where I learned more of the technical side of the sound system. I did my own mall shows, decorations of the mall, I also joined into dance with people from TSA, so I did background dancing for 3 years. Before I went into acting, I did background for 1 year. That’s pretty much my research, how to get into the industry, learning how to talk to the people, learning how to do it, and I just got into acting after that. It’s been quite a journey.

Speaking of the whole journey of trying different things, has that changed your insight, or your whole goal in life?

I think having more different experiences makes you become a better person.  I mean I did not know how to dress before I worked in retail. I did not know how to cook until I literally brought myself into working an area where I had to be fast, efficient, and good at the same time to get the skill going. More over, you have to do it hands on. I mean reading books helps, but putting it into action is totally different. I really like interacting with people.

Speaking of education, and getting a good life experience through work, how do you think it’s the best way to balance the two?

You have to do both. Before, if you did one well you could be successful; but now a days, they’re looking for both. I mean if you were going to University, I would recommend to start working and keep on studying.  And as you go along, you could use those skills together; once you graduate, you know, you’re already half way in your position if you already like what you’re doing. Or if you realize the job that you’re doing at the time is not good for you, at least you’ve figured something out. You don’t have to stalemate, and guess whether or not you should get a job in that field you graduated in. If you love it, continue on with it, or if not then you can move on. What is the point of going to a college of a university? I don’t think it’s going in for the education itself because its really minimal on what they give you. Whereas what you do actually do in life is so much more intense, you have to restart to learn again. What University gives you is research, analyze and learn how to work by yourself independently, that’s what you gain the most from a University. Really what degree you get doesn’t matter, if you can put those three things into play, you’re good for life.

Living in a Vancouver itself, it is like a new city with a lot of developing things. What is it like working in a city like Vancouver?

There are all very interesting. Vancouver is an interesting city because it has a lot of different stuff going on. It’s really diverse, and multicultural like for me working in acting, I could go for Asian Variety shows or go audition with the Caucasian community, it’s really great. You find diversity in the way they do things, how they properly organize things, and all the ways they do business. It’s interesting because there is always the Asian way, and there is the Caucasian way. You really have to put both together to make it work; they have their advantages, and their disadvantages. I mean in a business stand point, you really need to know the budget you have to work with, how long you plan on running the business for and go from there.

What’s your view upon the Vancouver Night Life Scene?

It’s not enough. I really believe that we can do a lot better in shows, and show production itself. In Night Clubs, they rarely renew their own decorations or systems. Every night, if you go to the club, no matter what the theme maybe you end up with the same people, the same DJ, the same show. I don’t think it’s a show, I think it’s just a past time. If people want to do a show, I think they really need to put in some creativity into the whole aspect in entertainment. I know budget is a constraint, but I think there are many ways to create new ideas, or shows if people are willing to go out and collaborate with different artists or DJ’s, or modeling, or even just different people from different industries. I mean I’ve seen some company dinners where they do a further outreach like bringing in Heineken to do one of those ice sculptures with alcohol. I’ve seen that, those are so much nicer; I mean you can put that once or twice in a club to make it more special, people will enjoy that. Instead of just Go Go Dancers, do some contests differently. I mean there are contests that are always based on a professional industry, people don’t want to go in because there is always that guy that is so good that wins it all like in dancing. Why don’t you try per say have a contest based on couples that can dance well? There are so many ideas, there are so much more. Pretty much all the things I’ve said aren’t on a monetary constraint, but just needs time, and effort to push yourself and come up with these ideas.  It’s pretty sad how people in these industries aren’t trying hard enough to attract more people.

Where do you find your inspiration or ideas from to do all the things you’ve just mentioned?

Just walking around, I mean literally it’s silly to just wear your headphones when you’re bussing. I mean why are you going into your own little world and not interacting with the people around you? I mean just like having coffee, I can just sit all day watching people and take note on how they sit, how they work. For an actor it’s a great personality study that can upgrade your skills with, I mean just using it in some form of presentation, or you can just change your own individual personality through observation. Just taking note, and if you see something that is pleasing to the eye, why don’t you take that in and make yourself a better person? I mean listening to music all day, and doing your own thing, that’s great. But you have all the time you need to yourself in your room, but when you’re out I’m pretty sure you can keep your eyes and ears open, you can see the world, and imitate the world and make yourself better as a person.

What kind of girls are you interested in, and what kind of girls are you attracted to?

What do I think defines a girl? Hmmm, I think they have to be athletic; they have to be shorter than me or same height. Pretty much outgoing, and cheerful; I mean I don’t want to be stuck with someone that is pessimistic and always complaining, I don’t want that. I mean it’s good to be realistic, but come on! Girls, I really don’t know, I mean it’s really a combination and pretty much weighing the pros and cons. Woah thinking back, I haven’t gone out with a girl in so long that I’ve just stopped thinking about those stuff. There’s so much more in life than just going out, going on dates. I mean I would love to have a girlfriend, but I just don’t think I have the time for one.

Seems like you’re a really person, how would you recommend someone that is struggling with balancing things in their life?

I would say 3 simple words: “Write it Down!” Really just write it down. It’s the best thing that I’ve done in my life. I mean just write it down on a little booklet to remind yourself, and once you’re done just cross it out. When you write it down, you won’t miss anything, ever. I mean even if you are too busy to do it that day, you can push it to the next, and when it’s on the top of the list you’re ought to get that done first. It’s the best policy to follow.

Out of all your different characteristics, what is one that would fully describe you?

Fusion. I see myself as a very diversified person, I love that. I mean it allows me to work on a lot more projects and do more stuff that way. You got to have the base to work with, I mean right now I have a lot of different choices and I’m grateful for that. Acting is a great thing but I don’t know if it’s the right thing, I mean I don’t know if I’m going to succeed; I’m going to try, but I don’t know. I’m going to give myself a second option, so when I fail one thing, I can just move on to another.

What is HYPE?

HYPE to me is jumping into the unknown, knowing that you fear the unknown but you’re still doing it, and having the courage to tell people that you’re doing it. There’s nothing that can stop you.