The Full Story
Robert Chua got his first TV job in 1964 during the days of black and a white TV as a property assistant at ADS Channel 7 in Adelaide, Australia. Over the next two years he worked as a camera man, floor manager, presentation director, program producer and director.
Robert on the studio floor at ADS Channel 7, 1964.Robert was enthralled with the television industry and was willing to work long hours at any job if it meant learning a new skill. One of his keenest memories of his time at Channel 7 was the thrill of pressing the button for the closing sequence in the early hours of the morning after most of the staff had left the station for the night.
He gained a lot of invaluable knowledge and experience in that first job, but soon felt the need to return home to Asia. Back in Singapore in 1966 and aged only 19, he finally got a job in November that year, aged 20, producing shows for Radio Television Singapore. He specialised in light entertainment and popular variety shows.
TVB managing director Andrew Eu 1973.While Robert waited to be accepted by Television Singapore, he helped out in recording audio tracks for local pop songs under the Philips label at Fajar Records. He also took part in producing shows such as pop concerts in Singapore and Malaysia.
Within the Singapore television industry at the time, Robert found there was a reluctance to trust such a young man to produce top programs. Then there was the issue of pay; as a non graduate he felt discriminated against both in salary and promotion. Despite these factors, he distinguished himself as the top producer in Singapore television, both in terms of content and sheer volume of production.
Robert responsible for the day’s transmission, ADS Channel 7,1965Then, in 1967 he was offered a young television producer’s dream job: helping to set up the first colour television station in Hong Kong at Television Broadcasts (TVB.)
He started at TVB as a senior production executive, then rose to Assistant Program Manager, Production Manager and, ultimately, Special Assistant to the Managing Director.
One of his first achievements at TVB was the creation of what became Asia’s longest lasting variety show, ` Enjoy Yourself Tonight (EYT.)` As soon as it was launched, EYT immediately shot up to the number one rated slot, a position it held for the six and a half years Robert Chua was with TVB. Starting out as a one hour show five nights a week, it was soon extended to one hour and 45 minutes per show.