Michelle Yeoh is the first person comes up in my mind when mentioning about Ipoh celebrity. When I was in primary school, my mother used to point at a bungalow and telling me that is Michelle's house whenever we passed by Tambun Road.
Michelle was born to a rich Chinese family in Ipoh, Malaysia at 6th August, 1962. She spent her childhood and grew up in Ipoh until she was 15. It was the time when her parents sent her to a boarding school in England. She was then enrolled into the London Royal Academy of Dance, majoring in Ballet.
A spinal injury happened later ended Michelle Yeoh's dream of being a prima ballerina but it didn't stop her from being an internationally well-known actress.
Her career as an artist started when she won the crown of Miss Malaysia beauty pageant in 1983. (I've told you that Ipoh is the factory of beautiful girls. *blink* )
Michelle has started and achieved a great portfolio in Hong Kong as an action star. That's why there are quite a lot of people thought that she is from Hong Kong instead of Malaysia.
Anyway, she did spend most of her time in Hong Kong and even married to a Hong Kong businessman, Dickson Poon in 1988. She was then retired until she divorced 3 years later, and resumes her career in 1992.
Now, Michelle is not only being known in Hong Kong, but Hollywood too. Her first Hollywood movie was the James Bond series "Tomorrow Never Dies" (1997).
She was the first Chinese/Asian Bond Girls. She also starred in some great movies like "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" (2000), "The Touch" (2002), "Silver Hawk" (2004), "Memoirs of A Geisha" (2005), "Sunshine" (2007) and many more.
We are proud of Michelle. She brings fame to Ipoh. Thus, she was awarded the Darjah Datuk Paduka Mahkota Perak (DPMP) on 19th April 2001 by Sultan Azlan Shah, the Sultan of Perak. (Sultan is just like the King of the state, there are 9 sultans from different states in Malaysia. Each of them takes turn to become Agung of Malaysia, which is like the King of the country.) Since that, we would like to call her as Dato Michelle Yeoh. (Dato is an honorary Malaysian title.)
Although Michelle is busy with her career, she still pays regular visits to Ipoh when having holidays and festivals such as the Chinese New Year. Just because Ipoh is her lovely hometown.