Behind every successful man, there is a woman… and several good buddies. Well, at least for veteran Cantopop singer Kenny Bee. A few days ago, the 65-year-old held a press con to promote his upcoming concert — his first gig in Hongkong after a decade. Since the age of 55, the popular singer has applied unsuccessfully to perform at the Hong Kong Coliseum almost every year. Well, good things come to those who wait. And finally after a decade-long wait, Ah Bee finally got his wish this year and will be holding not one, but two concerts at the venue next month.
At the press con, Kenny divulged that he has invited his good pal Tony Leung to attend his concert and that he’ll be singing Tony’s classic ballad ‘You Are So Unforgettable’ on that day. And one thing Kenny cannot forget is how Tony had helped him get rid of his negative thoughts while he was going through his divorce and bankruptcy scandal decades ago. “During the lowest point in my life, thankfully, there was Tony Leung to accompany me through that difficult time. He came to my house and quietly kept me company… Actually, just his company alone helped me greatly. If it weren't for him, I don't know what I might have done. As men, we just speak our mind when we have something to say. And if we don’t feel like saying it, we just keep quiet, but we’ll always feel the support of the other party.”
One may recall that back in his heyday, Kenny was a member of 1970s pop group Wynners, and the object of desire of many a teenage girl. In 1988, Kenny married socialite-turned-actress and tabloid magnet Teresa Cheung, after a whirlwind 21-day romance. Talk about speed dating. But in 1997, it was revealed that Teresa was having an affair with billionaire businessman Edmund Chan, who also happened to be the husband of her good friend, former model Susanna Chung. The shocking revelation was made by Susanna herself when she was a guest on a radio show, during which she also divulged that she was dying of lung cancer. Susanna, who has two kids with Edmund, accused Teresa of destroying their friendship and wrecking her marriage. The expose ignited a tabloid feeding frenzy in Hongkong, which led to Teresa and Kenny’s high-profile divorce in 1999, a year after Susanna succumbed to cancer. In June 2002, Edmund and Teresa reportedly went their separate ways. And a month later, Edmund filed for bankruptcy.
But, we digress. To add insult to injury, Kenny had acted upon his former wife’s advice to take out large loans totalling HKD$154.5 million (S$27.1mil) to invest in Hongkong’s real estate in the 1990s. But when the property market crashed in 1997, the couple found themselves stuck with huge debts amounting to an estimated HKD$250 million (S$43.8mil). Kenny was forced to file for bankruptcy in 2002, the same week that Edmund declared himself bankrupt. Phew, are we still talking about real-life or a TVB drama?
Thankfully, Kenny had his then-girlfriend, now-wife Fan Jiang by his side to tide him over the bankruptcy saga, and to mother his two kids from his previous marriage, so Kenny could focus on bringing home the bacon. On top of that, Kenny also had the support of many close pals, including Tony. The duo had become fast friends after working on their first movie together. As for what Tony’s greatest merit is, Kenny jokingly said that Tony loves picking up the tab, and has a magnanimous spirit. Now, don’t we all wish we had a friend like Tony?