Stefanie Sun has an elder sister by three years called Sng Yee-kia , and a younger sister by six years named Sng Ee-mei .
Sun was educated at , and went on to attend Saint Andrew's Junior College. She later attended Nanyang Technological University, where she obtained a degree in Marketing. Her abilities were discovered by her music teacher, Lee Wei Song, at his music school.
In the -speaking world, Sun is more popularly known by her Mandarin name, Sun Yanzi or Sun Yan Zi. Stefanie Sun has sold over 10 million copies in Asia. With ten albums to her name, she is arguably the most popular Mandarin female singer in Asia and the most successful singer from Singapore.
Most of her songs are sung in Mandarin, with a few in . Sun's ability to speak various dialects is reflected in the songs she sings.
In the song "Cloudy Day" , she sings in both Mandarin and Teochew. It is an adaptation of a traditional Teochew folk song that included the first six words in the original Teochew- ''Thi?-o?-o?, beh lo?h-hō?'' - in the chorus.
The album '''' contains 6 songs in English: of "Venus", "That I Will Be Good", "Sometimes Love Just Ain't Enough", "Silent All These Years", and "Hey Jude"; and the original song "Someone".
Sun does most of her recording, and conducts most of her publicity events, in Taiwan, which comprises her largest audience. She also visits China, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Singapore frequently for promotional rounds where she is warmly received.
Her first album was released in June 2000, the self-titled '''' , published by Warner Music. "Yan Zi" album sold over 330 000 copies alone in Taiwan. This was followed in December of the same year by ''My Desired Happiness'' . Which have also sold over 380 000 copies in Taiwan alone. Both albums achieved commercial success by having each sold over 1 000 000 copies in China.
Her third album was released in Early 2001, titled "Kite". This album had sold successfully with 300 000 copies in Taiwan; also over 950 000 copies in China.
January 2002 saw the release of '''' , a collection of songs, many of which are cover versions. "Start" sold over 250 000 copies in Taiwan alone in less than a month. It reached high commercial success in Mainland China with over 1 000 000 copies sold.
In 2002 and 2003 Sun sang the official theme songs for Singapore's National Day Parade: "We Will Get There" and "One United People" . The former was included on the album ''''.
In early 2003, she released her fourth album titled, "To Be Continued..." which was also met with commercial success. It managed to sell over 250 000 copies in Taiwan and over 1 000 000 in China. Few months later, she released her seventh album with six new songs mixed with fifteen of her old songs. By the end of 2003, Stefanie Sun had sold over 7 000 000 copies in Asia with just seven albums.
In late 2003, she decided to take a one-year hiatus from making music, believing that she needs to recover her lost sense of direction in her career. She returned in late 2004 with a new album titled ''Stefanie'', intended to be a mirror of her debut album . This was to symbolise her return with a fresh attitude. This album was well received by the critics in the Chinese music industry. This album sold over 2 300 000 copies in Asia; making it the most successful album from her. She also started her own company, Make Music, during this sabbatical.
'''' was released on 2005, almost one year later.
Reviews of this new album have been mixed, but Sun had mentioned before that her priority is to make quality music, instead of over-commercialized products that sell well but have a lower level of artistic quality. Though this album did not reach the best commercial success, it had still managed to sell over 1 000 000 copies in Asia.
In 2006, Sun was in the midst of a regional concert tour. She has staged four full-house concerts at the renowned Hong Kong Coliseum. The performances have received positive reviews from the media as well as overwhelming support from fans. Sun also returned to Singapore in a much-anticipated homecoming concert. Yet, not all is smooth-sailing for her. At the Golden Melody Award 2006 in Taiwan, whilst performing renditions of other male singers' songs, she went off-key and was heavily lambasted in the Chinese pop media, which reported that she has shattered her image of a pop diva with great singing skills. She attributed it to factors like not enough rest, jet lag, inadequate time for sufficient practice etc.
Sun's first album under the Capitol brand is entitled Against The Light and has been released on 22 March 2007. Her decision to leave Warner after 9 albums was partly due to music executive Sam Chen, who now works at EMI. He had collaborated with Sun on 8 of her 9 albums.
On February 26, 2007, Stefanie Sun returned from Cairo where she and her team were extorted by suspected local gangsters. Sun was in Egypt to shoot a music video for her new album. Two men disguised as government officials followed her and the crew and asked for money—at one point even showing a handgun. The crew tried calling the police, only for the two crooks to dismiss them with just a few words. The crew had to hand over a total of over 200,000 yuan in order to continue shooting. The extortion went on for four days. Finally, Sun and her team were able to leave the country with the help of the Singapore embassy. Upon returning home, the pop diva said nothing except that she was tired and needed some rest.
Stefanie Sun's 10th album, Against The Light, has been a major success in Asia. In Taiwan, it sold over 60,000 copies in the first 3 days it was released. In addition, over 500,000 copies were sold within a week in Mainland China. So far, Sun has been the number one spot in Taiwanese music charts for six weeks.
In 2007, Stefanie Sun sang the offcial theme song for ASEAN's 40th anniversary celebrations: Rise Again.
In 2008, Stefanie Sun will continue her music journey, with collaboration with other famous singers like JJ lin.
Sun collaborated with Japanese singer Mai Kuraki on the last track of Sun's album ''To Be Continued...''. They collaborated again on Mai Kuraki's ''If I Believe'', released in July 2003.
Sun also sang with fellow Singaporean singer, Tanya Chua, the song "Original Point " in Tanya's album, Amphibian.
In the song "First Day", from the album '''', she sings with the popular Taiwanese musicians and F.I.R., forming a one time band called First Day , with FIR coming from F.I.R., ST coming from the first two letters in Sun Yan Zi's English name Stefanie and Day coming from MayDay. Sun had previously worked with MayDay on a song from their album "Time Machine".
She collaborated with singers Wang Leehom, Jane Zhang, and Wang Feng to record the theme song of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games: Light the Passion, Share the Dream .
Awards and accolades
Sun is regarded as one of the most accomplished local artists in her native homeland, Singapore, partly linked with her central role in two National Day theme songs.
She has won over 33 awards and other accolades for her music in the course of her career in Singapore, Taiwan, mainland China and Hong Kong.
She was also awarded the outstanding young alumni award in 2005. She also received the World's Young Woman Achiever Award.
In 2007, she was awarded the Singapore Youth Award for her outstanding achievements in the music scene, and her contributions to the local and international community.
She has just recently taken an offer to guest star in the movie "12 Lotus" . She will be acting as Guan Yin, who sang hokkien song and a poem in Hokkien as well.