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Faye Wong Turns on the Charm

http://www.chinese.cn 10:05, August 16, 2010 China.org.cn

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The diva will return to the stage after six years for major concerts in Beijing  and Shanghai .

Faye Wong knows how to keep a crowd waiting - and get away with it. She did that again on a rainy afternoon at a Beijing hotel recently. Hundreds of journalists who had waited for the pop diva for hours, could do no more than sigh when she appeared and left after saying just a few words.

But no one is complaining. After all, this is a singer who can sell millions without a single promotion - be it albums, movies or concerts. Twenty years after her debut album, she retains her special magic.

The diva will return to the stage  with five concerts in Beijing and Shanghai this October and November, after being away from the spotlight for six years.

When the organizers of the media event announced, "Our diva is back and this time it is for real," shouts of "I love you, Faye Wong" resonated around the room.

Wong, wearing a red-and-black dress, a pair of transparent flip-flops and her hair in a bun, walked up gracefully to the waiting reporters and said simply: "Long time no see".

When the organizers then proceeded to announce that concert tickets worth nearly 200 million yuan had been snapped up in 10 days, Wong smiled and thanked her fans.

Reporters who wanted to hear more from her got a giggle and a "What should I say?" in reply.

This pop diva certainly practices economy of words, but when she speaks, her fans hang on to every word. Unless, of course, they are statements like, "When I stop singing, please forget me", uttered in 2004 when she announced her "retirement". Those words are easily forgotten and forgiven by fervent fans who want her back in the limelight.

Since then, Faye has kept a mysteriously low profile bar the few photos taken by paparazzi of her shopping and dining in the capital where she lives.

Her songs have stayed on top of the karaoke charts and fans continued to be hungry for news, of her singing and her fashion style.

Wong, 40, has not performed publicly since 2005 except for two events - a fund-raiser for Sichuan earthquake victims in 2008 and a dinner last year for the Smile Angel Foundation, a charity she and husband actor Li Yapeng founded four years ago to provide poor children with cleft lips with free surgery.

She has turned down acting and singing opportunities to care for her family, especially her second daughter, Li Yan, 3, who was born with a severe cleft lip.

But rumors about her comeback never ceased. Her every move was noted whether it was an appearance in a hair-product advertisement or when she sang the theme for the movie, Confucius.

Earlier this year, she dazzled at the CCTV Spring Festival Gala singing the song Chuanqi or Legend, and Wong was once again in the spotlight. "Her popularity is as much about her singing as her personal charisma The song is not new but she made it popular," says Li Jian, who wrote Chuanqi.

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