Template:Chinese name Template:For Template:Infobox Chinese-language singer and actor Yao Lee, also credited as Yiu Lei and Miss Hue Lee, was a Chinese singer from the 1930s to the 1970s and sister of Yao Min. By the 1940s, she became one of the Seven great singing stars.[1]


Born in Shanghai, Yao began performing with a radio appearance there in 1935 at the age of 13. She was signed to Pathé Records.

Following the Communist seizure of power in China in 1949, popular music was considered ideologically suspect[2] and Yao fled to Hong Kong in 1950 to continue her singing career there. In addition to releasing hit records, she often acted as a playback singer for movie superstars. She stopped singing in 1967 with the death of her brother, but took an executive position with EMI Music Hong Kong in 1969. In 1970, she returned to performing and traveled to Taiwan to perform there for the first time and sought unsuccessfully to sign Teresa Teng to EMI for the Hong Kong market. She retired officially in 1975 but remained supportive of singers such as Wakin Chau.


During the 1930s and 40s, Yao Lee's high, soft singing style was typical of Chinese popular music of the time. She performed numerous popular standards, such as Wishing You Happiness and Prosperity (恭喜恭喜) and "By the Suzhou River" (蘇州河邊) with her brother Yao Min.[3] She is famous for her 1940 version of Rose, Rose, I Love You (玫瑰玫瑰我愛你), later recorded by Frankie Laine in the United States with English lyrics. (Her version was also released in the US and the United Kingdom credited to "Miss Hue Lee"). Yao was known as "the Silver Voice" (銀嗓子) alluding to fellow Shanghai singer Zhou Xuan, who was known as "the Golden Voice" (金嗓子).

With increasing Western influence in the region after World War II and her move to Hong Kong, Yao Lee's singing changed. She was introduced to more Western popular music and became an admirer of American singer Patti Page whom she emulated by lowering her voice and incorporating some vocal mannerisms. As a result, Yao is sometimes called "Hong Kong's Patti Page."

Yao was extremely prolific with over 400 gramophone records attributed to her.


  1. Baidu. Bai Guang. Retrieved on 2007-04-28.
  2. Panorama of Musical Creation: Vocal Music at China Culture Information Net
  3. Wakinchau. Golden days of Yao Li 流金歲月-姚莉 玫瑰 玫瑰我愛你. Retrieved on 2007-04-26.

External linksEdit

no:Yao Lee

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