- Christina Chong’s EP Twin Flames is finally out, fulfilling her longtime dream of creating and sharing her own original music.
- The EP is available on major platforms like Spotify, Apple Music, and Amazon Music, as well as for purchase as a physical copy.
- The songs on the EP are deeply personal and inspired by real-life experiences, such as a passionate relationship and a heartbreaking breakup.
Christina Chong spent the best part of a year writing, producing, and exploring different musical styles to release Twin Flames, her first EP of original music.
A graduate of the Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts, Christina pursued her dream of playing lead roles in musical theatre by taking film and TV acting work. After starring in projects like Black Mirror, Doctor Who, Johnny English Reborn, and Dominion, Chong landed the role of La’an Noonien-Singh on Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. This gave Christina the confidence and opportunity to explore her voice and create her own original music.
Screen Rant had the absolute pleasure to chat with Christina Chong about her EP, Twin Flames. She sampled each song and shared some of the personal stories behind each track, as well as sharing the exciting next steps in her music career.
Christina Chong Talks Twin Flames
Screen Rant: We are here today to get to know you as a recording artist. Your EP, Twin Flames, drops on Friday, August 11, which is today. Congratulations!
Christina Chong: Thank you so much. It’s so weird to think that I have finally achieved that dream that I’ve had for absolutely years. And especially to see the physical copy. But for it now to be out online into the world is incredible.
I’m very fortunate. Speaking of physical copies, I just so happen to have a physical copy of your CD right here, signed by you. I love it. I love all the songs in your EP, and I want to ask you all about them. But first, how can people stream your music?
Christina Chong: So you can go to Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, Deezer, or YouTube, all major platforms, it’s all on there. And they can also buy the physical copy today. If you go to my Instagram (@christinachongx), most of the links to the major platforms are there. And then, you can also buy a physical copy while they’re still in stock. I’ve got very limited CDs available. But there’s a link to my Shopify shop in my Instagram link at the top of my page.
You’re best known for your acting roles, but has becoming a recording artist and making your own original music always been this dream of yours?
Christina Chong: Just as I was about 19, I quietly said to myself, “One day.” I was working with an A&R guy who’d worked with Amy Winehouse. And he said to me, “Look, if you’re going to do this, you got to take it seriously. You got to do it now if you’re going to do it.” I’m 19. I was like, “Okay,” but I’d already booked a musical theater job in Germany, and already signed the contract, I was like, “Well, I can’t do this now because I signed a year and a half in Germany.” And he’s like, “Well, then we can’t do this. You have to choose one or the other.” I chose the Germany job. And I said to myself, “I’ll do it when the time is right for me.”
Because of things in my other career, it kind of inspired me to do it for myself, fulfill that dream. And it gave me the confidence, the means, the everything to just go ahead. And one of the women I was working with at the time, Elaine Overholt, who has done the Oscar winning film CODA, she was the vocal coach on that, [and] she did Chicago the musical. And funny coincidence, Elaine also worked with a guy called Paul Bogaev who was also the musical director on the musical I did in Germany, Aida the musical. And so, Elaine knew Paul really well, because they worked on Chicago, the musical, the film version with Catherine Zeta Jones and Renee Zellweger.
My whole career came 360. And the whole reason I’d gotten into TV in the first place was to play leads in musical theater. Because I thought if I fast track, get a profile, then jump back into musicals, I can play main roles. And it’s just so wacky the way it has happened, that I’ve had to have these this whole long, over a decade’s worth of film and TV work to finally get to where I want in the most random way. I would never have thought the way it’s happened that it would go down like that. I just didn’t think.
Who are your musical influences? Or let me put it this way: It’s late at night. No one is around. You crank up your iTunes. Who are you listening to?
Christina Chong: Well, I go through phases. I’m very much like depends on my mood, I guess like a lot of people. So if I’m driving, for example, there’s an artist that I really love at the moment, a new artist Grae, G-R-A-E. I can play her whole album. Actually, her whole Spotify discography. Yeah, so she’s amazing. So check her up. G-R-A-E. And then Amy Winehouse, I can play anytime, practically. And it’s funny how I’d connected with an A&R guy who was working with Amy at the beginning, and I just feel so inspired by her. And yeah, it’s also the mood I’m in, and it’s not necessarily one particular artists. It can just be a song on the album. Or I’m very into the ’70s disco. Earth, Wind and Fire. Jamiroquai. No, that’s not 70s. But Jamiroquai still has that 70s disco beat to it. And obviously, Michael Jackson, classics, Motown. Love Motown.
There are four tracks on your EP, and we’re going to talk about each song. The first release is Twin Flames. Love it. I’ve listened to it the most since you dropped it a few weeks ago. Tell us about Twin Flames and what the song means to you.
Christina Chong: So this all started: This was the last song I wrote, actually. Twin Flames was the last song I wrote on the EP. But the whole journey started with me sitting down and just spilling my guts of all the emotions and the key things that have happened in my life, and picking out authentic moments because that was the whole thing about this journey, I wanted it to be truly me. Not a character, not me hiding. It’s just Christina. I was like, “Okay, if it’s gonna be just me, I need to use real stuff.”
The hardest issue that I was going through at that time was a breakup with the guy who I’m no longer with, but who I consider to be my Twin Flame. It’s like two parts of the same soul, they say, and they only meet every four lifetimes. So apparently, we’d lived before in Sicily in the 1800s. And we were told by a psychic, “If you go back to Sicily, and back to this little fishing village together,” she said, “I think it’ll be very healing.” For me. So I booked the flight straightaway, and I think it was [in] May. We went to Sicily and went to this little fishing village, and nothing happened. I was like, “Oh, I thought she said it’s gonna be like…” I was imagining something to happen, you know? Like, what’s gonna happen? Nothing happened! And then we went to bed that night in this hotel in this little fishing village. And in the middle of the night, I woke up with this intense panic attack that I’d never experienced in my life. I thought it was gonna die.
I went out into the balcony, I couldn’t breathe. He was still asleep, and I was literally looking about to get someone’s attention to call an ambulance, because I was like, “This is where I die.” I literally thought I was going to die. I couldn’t breathe. He comes out of the room. He’s like, “What’s going on? What’s going on?” I couldn’t talk. Anyway, he sat with me. I managed to gather my thoughts. But it was like that, you know when you’re crying, and you get that feeling, it was like that. And [the psychic] had told us that when we were together in Sicily [in the past], he had left to go on some political work business, left the country, that island, and died at a distance. So just didn’t return.
I was left thinking he’d abandoned me. And I’m waiting for him, and he didn’t come back. So that abandonment issue in me was still there. Not for him, because he just didn’t know any better. He just went off and died. But I’d always expected him to come back and he didn’t. So I feel like that moment in that hotel was me like processing that emotion because I’ve never had a panic attack like that before.
Wow. That’s extraordinary.
Christina Chong: The song is about… so it says “We were told we met before this,” which is that story. And then when we first got together, it was this thing of like, I knew him instantly. I was like, “Whoa, what is this?” That feeling of really intense connection.
The next release is “No Blame.” There’s a personal story behind that, isn’t there?
Christina Chong: Oh, yeah. So Twin Flames is the meeting, meeting this guy, and the intense passionate relationship and how, when it’s so passionate, you can be so in love, but you have so much to lose as well. The higher you go, the further you have to fall. So No Blame was about the breakup. But having No Blame is what it says. It was no one’s fault. It was timing, the timing wasn’t right. I think you can love someone, and you can find the right person, you can be crazy in love, and if it’s not the right time, it doesn’t work. It can’t happen, you know? So that’s a song about how it all happened. The breakup and that it’s sad, but it’s okay. And I don’t blame you.
And I love the music video. It’s available on YouTube at Christina Chong, along with the videos for your songs. That was a short film that you turned into a music video.
Christina Chong: And the guy in that is my Twin Flame. The guy who plays the love interest in the music video is my Twin Flame. So we filmed that in 2016 when we met and little did we know it would become a music video for the breakup song that I wrote about him.
Again, you cannot predict life. Track number 3 is “Can’t Show Love.” I love how upbeat and fun it is. I also love the music video for this too, with some home movies of young Christina.
Christina Chong: Can’t Show Love was all inspired by figuring out why things didn’t work in the Twin Flame relationship. And going back into my childhood, and trying to figure out the key relationships and major relationships with family members, because that’s where most of us get our trauma from. It doesn’t have to be major trauma, but small trauma, big trauma, whatever. But a lot of our issues stem from childhood and the first relationships we had. And not that there’s anything wrong with that, we all have that. Even if we think we’ve had a perfect relationship with our parents, that can screw us up. If we think that we come from a perfect childhood, then we’re always looking for perfection in a partner.
And maybe you have the perfect example of mom and dad, a great relationship. Well, that’s then what you’re looking for, and you won’t settle for anything less. So in an opposite way, you’ve still got some kind of trauma. So it’s about going into my dad’s childhood as well. What was his dad like to him? How was he to me? Then, what am I looking for in my relationship with men? And similar, my mum, what was her relationship like with her dad? And my granddad on my mom’s side is also in the video. And therefore, how does that play out? The intergenerational trauma of it all? And how does that play out?
I love that there’s a narrative story to the way you’re dropping the songs and there’s a through-line through it. You’re a storyteller. It’s quite evident in your music, it’s evident in your other work as well. Last but certainly not least is track four, I Get To Choose. It’s so light and sweet. That’s the one that really kind of snuck up on me this week, as I kept listening to your EP. “What is I Get To Choose” about?
Christina Chong: So this is actually one of my favorites, maybe my favorite, because it was very unexpected, actually. I knew that I wanted to write an empowering song. Like, celebrating me as a woman, and also celebrating the fact that I’d gotten over – this was written down the line after the breakup – gotten over the relationship, not being able to exist, and being happy on the other side of it. You know, we come into this world alone, we leave this world alone. And it’s just me, myself and I.
At a time when things were really happening for me, and for a long, for a long while, I felt like I’ve had to really — I mean, I still work hard — but really had to scrape and scrap, get by, and just take the scraps from the table, and just take whatever work was thrown my way just to survive. And taking roles that weren’t necessarily what I wanted to do, but I knew that I had to take the money or just to work, and not feeling like I was seen and believed in. And suddenly, writing this song, realizing where I now am in my life, I get to choose now. In lots of senses, but I get to choose as a woman what I do, where I go. I’m independent. I’m in control of my life. I’m in a place where I am happy to be on my own, I am enjoying being single. And it’s like looking back and going, “Wow, it took me on a big journey. And it’s not the end.” Obviously. I don’t want to die yet. But it’s taken me on this amazing circle.
When I was traveling to a job that I was doing, cannot say what that job was, but a big role that I got. When I was traveling to go there, the car that picked me up to the airport took me past the school I went to as a 14-year-old. It was performing arts school called the Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts. And that’s not the quickest way to get to the airport from my house. But for some reason it drove right past that, and I saw my 14-year-old self walking up the road, and I was like, “Oh my god, little did she know years later this will be happening.” And she struggled back then. I struggled with identity, and the racism, and things like that, and not being seen. So now, I’m on the other side of that, and I cried singing those. And I still do sometimes if it comes on in the car. I get teary because of what I’ve done to get here and how I finally got there.
Well, you’re definitely being seen and believed in now. Christina Chong’s Twin Flames EP is available now on Apple Music, Spotify, wherever you stream your music, and you can subscribe also to Christina Chong’s YouTube and see the music videos for each song. Christina, congratulations again. It’s really great that with the strikes going on, you’ve had your music career taking off, and you’re able to get out there and put your original content and yourself out there.
Christina Chong: I know, talk about good timing. (laughs) If there is ever a time to go on strike, now is the time. I just want to mention as well that I also have merchandise, Twin Flames merchandise coming. That hopefully will be dropping at some point next week. So check it out. There’ll be a link in my Instagram (@christinachongx) but keep an eye out for it.
Excellent. So what’s next for you in terms of your music? Live performances? Do you want to tour?
Christina Chong: I literally have said I’ll do whatever comes on my path. If it’s meant to be, it will be. I don’t know what was coming next, really. I’ve got some remixes of Twin Flames in the bag. Some electronic versions, some house versions, maybe acoustic versions of the EP. I’d love to do a Christmas single. But beyond that, I don’t know. I guess the logical step would be to do a full album. But there’s nothing in concrete yet. And then, after the album, I reckon that would be the time to go on tour.
About Christina Chong
British actress and singer Christina Chong is releasing her original music, which can be streamed on Apple Music, Spotify, and wherever you stream your music. Her first EP, Twin Flames, is out on the Goldun Egg label. Christina has starred in several TV and film roles, and she currently plays La’an Noonien-Singh on Star Trek: Strange New Worlds.
Listen to Christina Chong’s Twin Flames EP on Spotify, Apple Music, and all other music platforms.
Source: Screen Rant Plus