TV star revisits her old school


A former Waitaki Girls’ High School pupil has returned with a television crew.
Sisley Choi, of Hong Kong, boarded at WGHS from 2005 to 2009. She was runner-up in the Miss Hong Kong pageant in 2013, which launched her acting career. She is now the star of a documentary. A crew of six from Hong Kong’s biggest TV station flew in with Miss Choi last week to film the setting of her formative years. They were met by former Waitaki Girls’ international students co-ordinator Nicola Mountain.
The pilgrimage to Oamaru centred on the school. Miss Choi had tea at the hostel and borrowed a school uniform for the following day’s film.
“I love this kilt,” she said, swishing the fabric.
Miss Choi followed her older brother, who attended Waitaki Boys’, to Oamaru.
She said she had been nervous but made friends and enjoyed “everything” about the school.
School here was less stressful than Hong Kong, she said.
Pupils could choose their subjects and had “lots of activities” outside the classroom.
Miss Choi was reunited with many of her teachers and talked to pupils, noting the increase in computer-based learning.
In the school hall, she said she was “touched, thinking about my memories here”. An accomplished pianist, Miss Choi was sometimes invited to play at school assemblies in the hall.
She regaled the TV crew with tales of her school days, switching easily between Chinese and English.
Miss Choi also speaks German, having spent three years nannying in Germany after leaving school.
She was comfortable in front of the cameras, having become used to them since her career took off after the Miss Hong Kong pageant. She has taken part in variety shows and tourism programmes, with life-sized posters of her displayed in supermarkets.
Most of her time with the TV station was as an actor.
“I’m not great at it but I’m learning. I’m thankful the company is giving me a lot of opportunities.
“I’m open to anything. I’ve done a role being a policewoman, and in the last drama on TV I was a fashion magazine editor. In the next one, I’ll be an insurance company worker.
“I get to try different jobs. It’s great. I don’t really like settling down.”The 25-year-old was often approached in the street at home _ “Kids like me … I like kids so I’m glad they like me.”On Thursday, Miss Choi went to Fat Sally’s Pub and Restaurant, where she had worked as a waitress and on Friday, she and the crew left for Christchurch to do “New Zealand things” such as jet-boating. They flew out of the country on Sunday.
Miss Choi did not know when the documentary would be screened but said she would send clips to the school.

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