The English drama, Lion Mums is about three very different mothers who share the same goal of giving their children the best. See how our favourite Singaporean mums are tackling some of their biggest struggles yet when it comes to parenting, growing older and societal pressures especially dealing with the hot topic of ever-strenuous PSLE exam.
Lina Ng played the role of ‘Chae Lian’ in Lion Mums S4. Lina is a well-known actress in Singapore and she entered the entertainment industry after winning the first runner up in Star Search competition in 1993. She has 3 kids (sons), with her youngest son going to take the PSLE in two years’ time. Her recent accolades include:
- Best Actress in a Supporting Role at 25th Asian Television Awards for Last Madame
- Best Actress in a Supporting Role at the 2020 Asian Academy Creative Awards for Last Madame
We speak to Lina Ng where she shared more about her role in Lion Mums S4, how she manages to juggle with work, family and raising up three boys. Read on to find out more.
1. Please share with us more about your background and what made you decide to be an actress?
Lina: I worked part time while balancing my studies in Pre-U. Took part in a teenage magazine competition and was selected to be featured as the cover girl in Feb 1990 (The Teenage Centerfold Girl). Was doing part-time modelling and subsequently took part in a local-talent search competition ‘Star Search’ in 1993. Won 1st runner up and offered a contract by TCS.
I love acting and my interest and passion has been so till now.
2. Can you share with us more about your role in Lion Mums S4?
Lina: I play Chae Lian in Lion Mums. In Lion Mums Season 2 & 3, Chae Lian was portrayed as an elitist, perfectionist mum and can be pretty strict with her 3 children. In Season 4, the character of Chae Lian is evolving as she is adapting to a newly married life, and she is going through perimenopause.
3. What are the challenges that you have faced in your role in Lion Mums S4 and how do you overcome them?
Lina: Chae Lian character underwent a big change. In seasons 2 and 3, she has been portrayed as a strong opinionated single mother. In season 4, Chae Lian got married and she had to adapt to being accommodative to her husband. It’s a big shift in her that is emphasized in season 4. With lesser scenes to show her former character, I have to find the balance to portray the transition of characters.
The story line involves sensual scenes which I am not too comfortable to act in. But with the support and understanding of my co-actor, director and crew, I managed to find a balance to portray the character and emotions as intended.
4. How do you manage to juggle a hectic work schedule, family life and with the responsibilities of motherhood?
Lina: Teamwork with my hubby, my children, my parents, and extended family.
Love for each other is the motive and the whole team is united by that.
Set your priorities. In different seasons in your life, the priorities will change so take time to think and readjust whenever necessary. Eg. When all my boys were below 12 years old, I chose to be a full-time housewife, less work commitments and driving the children to/fro school/enrichment.
5. Your youngest son is going to take PSLE in two years’ time, how are you going to prepare your son for the exam? Any studying tips that you would like to share with our readers?
Lina: Preparation for PSLE will intensify by end of Primary 5.
- Tips? TLC (tender loving care) for the child.
- To shower love because you love your child and not for exam results’ sake.
- Structured study time and play time,
- Never do last minute revision, it stresses everyone out. Plan their revision well, be vigilant to observe/find out which area of works they are weak at and just work on that.
- Allow them to have rest & play!
- Bonding time with family together.
- Home cooked food.
- Eat well and sleep well. Don’t study so much that they lack sleep. Their health is very important physically, mentally & emotionally.
6. How’s your own schooling experiences, how has it impacted you?
Lina: I come from a humble background. I love to study but wasn’t given much support as others. We are very close knitted family, but I had to work part time to supplement household income, so I wasn’t able to give my full energy and attention in studying, results compromised.
I have wonderful teachers in school. I truly believe in the Singapore education system. My children understand and has adapted well to benefit from the system.
All images credit to Lina Ng
7. As a mother of three boys, what are some of the challenges that you have faced raising your boys, how do you foster a close relationship with your boys?
Lina: Yes! Our family is very close. I’m very hands on with my children and family. I like to cook to feed my family. We forged close bonds over family meals.
Love is spelt as T.I.M.E. There is no shortcut to build closer relationship with our loved ones. My priority is my family, over work. Eg. I don’t take any work assignments for certain parts of the week where I’ve to send my child to tuition.
The challenges I faced were to understand all about BOYS.
- From a growing boy (1-12)-their mood
- To a teenager (12-19)-puberty, and
- eventually a young adult (19-25)- their struggles and emotions.
Because my encounter and true understanding of a male is only with my hubby; from 26 year old onwards.
8. What are some of the favourite things that you like to do with your children?
Lina: At their age now, it’s different from when they were younger. Nowadays, it is:
- search online for good deals
- Meals out together
- Talk about relationships
- Discussions on issues or news in general
9. Do you see any similarities or differences between your own role as a mother vs your on-screen role as Lian Chae Lian in Lion Mums S4 show?
Lina: More similarities in Season 2 & 3 in terms of how Chae Lian took care, protected and educated her 3 children.
Not so much in Season 4. Chae Lian is struggling with peri-menopause in Season 4, but I am managing my pre-menopause pretty well in real life, with much information and knowledge picked up so my family isn’t affected like the on-screen Chae Lian character.
10. Lastly, what projects are you working on now and any upcoming projects/shows that you would like to share with our readers?
Lina: Yes! Showing in 2022 during CNY will be a Chinese drama “Home Again”. Another breakthrough role I took upon, acting as Pierre Png’s mother.
Catch Lina Ng and the rest of the cast of Lion Mums S4 like Nurul Aini, Vanessa Vanderstraaten, Constance Lau, Lim Yu-Beng, Joshua Tan, Gina Tan and more at meWATCH, Channel 5 – One new episode every Monday to Wednesday at 9:30pm and Mediacorp Drama Channel on YouTube.