“Chimerica” ​​actress Quanna Luo Masterson on embracing her Chinese-British identity

Quanna Luo Masterson appeared alongside Cherry Jones, Alessandro Nivola and Harry Lloyd in Channel 4’s “Chimerica” a four-part series based on the award-winning play of the same name. Then, in 2020, she was in from Amazon Prime remarkable adaptation of “The best of worlds.” Recently, she was back on stage at the royal opera, and she is now writing her own screenplay. Quanna told us more about the move from China to the UK, the actors who inspire him and the importance of being open about mental health.

From China to UK

Kate: What was it like moving from China to the UK as a teenager?

Quanna Luo Masterson: I’m a naturally curious person and I wanted to learn everything, so it really helped me integrate into a new culture. I am grateful to have had the experience of growing up in different cultures while traveling the world – it has allowed me to learn more about people’s values, beliefs and behaviors.

How would you compare the two companies?

I went to a professional dance school in China where they taught dance and academy classes with military precision. It taught me a good work ethic and discipline. After that, when I was studying in the UK, I was encouraged to make mistakes and talk openly about my feelings. So I feel like I had the best of both worlds.

But it was sometimes difficult to find my own identity while integrating into a new society. We are all individuals from different backgrounds and this diversity and sense of welcome and inclusiveness should be embraced and celebrated.

Debut in the television and film industry

How did you start working in television and Film industry?

I have been performing since I was a child in China and have won several national awards for singing, dancing and acting.

When I moved to the UK I wanted to become a musical theater performer and now I work in the film industry by pure chance. My agent has always supported me. I also had a great acting teacher who really influenced and inspired me. I still love the theater and recently had the privilege of performing at the Royal Opera House in an adaptation of Richard Strauss’ opera ‘Salome’. It was great to be back on stage, stepping onto the boards and using this different performance format to get more out of it.

Favorite projects so far

What have been your favorite projects to date?

All. The beauty of this industry is that the days are never the same.

Can you tell us more about your work around mental health among British Asians?

I have been involved in discussions with the charity Mind regarding the mental health of the Asian population in the UK. During the discussion, it became clear to me that people have different perceptions of mental health issues and that they can be frowned upon or overlooked.

Migrants are also more likely to face mental health issues, but growing up, mental health was not something we talked about in our family. However, without the right help – due to language barriers and cultural beliefs – people will suffer in silence.

I think it’s important to educate people of Asian descent to see that poor mental health is not a bad thing. It doesn’t mean you’re weak or crazy or a phrase that will eventually pass. Events such as mental health talks in different languages ​​should be held more often in community centres.

The greatest inspirations from film and television

What are your biggest inspirations in film and television?

So many names. I love the work of Ernst Ingmar Bergman because he really understands people, their choices, their expressions and their emotions. Gong Li and Frances Macdormand are two inspiring names to mention; they not only influence my acting, but also inform my thinking about femininity, aging, and body image.

Women should come to terms with aging, and now that the film industry has developed a much more “open-minded” acceptance of these truths, we can all use this affirmative approach to be kinder to ourselves and each other. others. Fundamentally, aging shouldn’t be feared, in fact embraced, and how in the 21st century the immediacy of social media platforms means we ‘airbrush’ for perfection should be challenged and called upon. Body shaming, for both women and men in our industry, is an issue that urgently needs to be addressed.

I guess when I also think about inspiring characters, I have to say that so many people I’ve met in the world of film and television have influenced and shaped me. Yes, we all know and use the experiences of established names, but I’m also inspired by those in the business who have performed small supporting roles diligently and professionally over long careers.

Upcoming projects

What upcoming projects should we watch out for?

I’m writing a movie, which I’m very excited and excited to share soon. It’s something I’ve been working on for a while, and it’s in a constant state of development and growth, stay tuned for more exciting details on it.

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