Chipo Chung

Last updated 21 August 2014

Chipo Chung
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Chipo Chung

Born: 1977 (age: 46)


Chipo Chung is a Tanzanian-born actress raised in Zimbabwe.

Chipo Chung was born as a refugee in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. She is half-Zimbabwean and half-Chinese. Her given name Chipo means "gift" in the Shona language. She spent her first two years in refugee camps in Mozambique with thousands of young people who were escaping the war in then-Rhodesia.

Chipo was raised in Harare and developed her acting with the mixed-race theatre company Over the Edge. At eighteen, she moved to the United States where her mother Fay Chung was working for the United Nations. She studied atYale University and graduated cum laude with a double major in Theatre Studies and Fine Art.

Chipo trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) in London and graduated in 2003. Her repertoire includes political theatre: Talking to Terrorists (Royal Court Theatre), The Overwhelming (Royal National Theatre) and Fallujah(in which she played Condoleezza Rice), as well as classical plays such as Phedre, in which she performed with Helen Mirren (Royal National Theatre), and Epidavros.

She is known in science fiction circles for her work in Doctor Who, in one episode playing the Master's assistant Chantho, and in another, a character called the Fortune Teller. Her first film credit was as the voice of Icarus in Danny Boyle's Sunshine, followed by appearances in In the Loop and Proof. Other television appearances include the drama The Last Enemy and as a reporter in the Sherlock second series episode "The Hounds of Baskerville".

In 2011 she had a recurring role as Vivian, the Lady of the Lake, in the medieval romance drama series Camelot.

Chipo founded the UK-based charity 'Sponsored Arts For Education' (SAFE) which develops theatre for social change in Kenya, focusing on HIV education and abolishing clitoridectomy, and currently sits on its Board of Trustees. She works closely with the charity Peace Direct in support of 'Envision Zimbabwe', a women's trust that works towards consensus-building and peace in Zimbabwe. She also sits on the RADA Council and British Equity's International Committee for Artists' Freedom (ICAF).

Biography from the Wikipedia article, licensed under CC-BY-SA