Sandra Oh and Father

sandra-oh1Here is Sandra Oh with her father on The Bay’s Ad for Dolce Gabana perfume.  This ad was shown in The National Post and The Globe and Mail newspapers.  The caption says:

My parents started me in dancing to correct my pigeon toes but I caught the acting bug instead. In a family of scientists, lawyer and academics, becoming an actor was a bit of a head-scratcher. But in his own way, my father understood. Thanks Dad.

This is a Dolce Gabana perfume ad, so I guess, Sandra’s dad will get perfume for Father’s day.

Few Canadians made it to Hollywood stardom, and when they do,  we like to point out their Canadian origins.  Even fewer Canadian Korean immigrants made it to Hollywood, in fact, has there been one other than Sandra Oh?

Sandra Oh was born in Nepean, Ontario, to middle-class Korean immigrant parents Joon-Soo (John) and Young-Nam, who had come to Canada in the early 1960s. Her father is a businessman and her mother a biochemist.  Oh grew up living on Camwood Crescent in the Ottawa suburb of Nepean, where she began acting and dancing ballet at an early age.

She was the only one in her family not to have a masters degree of something, so she had to try very hard to prove herself.  So, what a wonderful feeling it must be to have her dad be proud of her.  On this youtube interview of Sandra Oh by Ellen Degeneres, Sandra Oh talked about her family and their experience as Canadian immigrants.

In her youth, Sandra played the flute, took ballet lessons and acting studies.  She decided that she “was not good enough to be a professional dancer” and eventually focused on acting, and took drama classes, joined the drama club.

Against her parents’ advice, she rejected a four-year journalism scholarship to Carleton University to study drama at the prestigious National Theatre School of Canada in Montreal, paying her own way. She told her parents that she would try acting for a few years, and if that failed, will return to school. Ironically, while studying at the National Theatre School, she portrayed a waitress in the made-for-television film, School’s Out, in which her co-worker, Caitlin Ryan (Stacie Mistysyn) also considers turning down her acceptance into Carleton University’s journalism programme.

Soon after graduating from the National Theatre School in 1993, she starred in a London, Ontario stage production of David Mamet’s Oleanna. Around the same time, she won roles in biographical TV films of two significant female Chinese-Canadians: as Vancouver author Evelyn Lau in The Diary of Evelyn Lau (Oh won the role over more than 1,000 others who auditioned); and as Adrienne Clarkson in a CBC biopic of Clarkson’s life.

Oh became known in Hollywood after the movies “Under the Tuscan Sun” and “Sideways”.  She is a regular on the TV hit series “Grey’s Anatomy” as Dr. Christina Yang, for which she won the 2006 Golden Globe Best supporting Actress Award.

Oh has one brother, named Ray, who works as a post-doctoral fellow at Harvard University and a sister, named Grace, who works as a Crown attorney in Vancouver, British Columbia.    

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Comments (8)

John W

June 19th, 2009 at 8:08 pm    


I think Sandra Oh is a really good actress, although she makes it look easy. She can play tough and vulnerable, she can play smart and sexy, she can also be very, very funny…….Most of all, she is classy.

mike golch

June 20th, 2009 at 8:22 am    


sandra Oh is a great actress,I enjoy watching her.

Icy BC

June 21st, 2009 at 4:29 pm    


I like her role as Dr. Christina Yang since I haven’t seen her movies yet.

Mary A.

June 21st, 2009 at 4:44 pm    


I never thought much of Sandra Oh until I saw her on the movie “Sideways”. The way she got mad at her boyfriend and kicked him was so funny. You can’t help but cheer for her. I will never forget that scene.

Miss Cinammon

June 23rd, 2009 at 7:36 pm    


Sandra Oh is an inspiration to all Canadians and Canadian immigrants alike.

KonstantinMiller

July 6th, 2009 at 9:43 pm    


Hello. I think the article is really interesting. I am even interested in reading more. How soon will you update your blog?

Webbielady

July 7th, 2009 at 10:35 pm    


Headscratcher it is indeed! Her siblings are all in the academic side but it makes her special to choose a different path.

In summary, I do believe she herself is full of brainy ideas thus she succeeeded. Honestly, she looks so familiar but I never really knew her name until I read it here.

I do love her last name… Oh… what a last name! Oh! :)

Carleton

November 7th, 2010 at 10:12 am    


Truly compelling story. I’m sure she would have been successful at whatever she wanted to do. Getting into that journalism program isn’t easy ;)

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