Denise Ho is an award-winning Hong Kong-based singer, and actress, as well as a pro-democracy and LGBTQ rights activist. Ho is an accomplished musician who entered the music industry in the 90s at age 19. In 2012, Ho became the first mainstream female singer in Hong Kong to come out of the closet. Since then, she has advocated for LGBTQ rights globally.
Ho has become a leading figure in Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement. She has been a prominent supporter of the recent Anti-Extradition bill Movement in Hong Kong, and was arrested as a staunch supporter of the 2014 Umbrella Movement and was arrested for taking part in the nonviolent pro-democracy protests. Since then, the Chinese government has banned her from performing in China where she has enjoyed popularity as a singer.
In 2016, following Ho’s meeting with the Dalai Lama, French cosmetics brand Lancôme cancelled a promotional concert featuring her performance. In response, Ho started crowdfunding her concerts to avoid corporate censorship. Despite facing pressure from the Chinese government, Ho continues to speak out for democracy in Hong Kong and LGBTQ rights globally and was featured in an extensive profile in The New Yorker. She has also appeared in CNN, Fox news, the Wall Street Journal, and the New York Times and was selected as one of BBC’s 100 Women in 2016.
In July 2019, Ho spoke on behalf of UN Watch at the UN Human Rights Council, where she was interrupted twice by China’s delegation who claimed that she was “defaming” China for speaking against its interference in Hong Kong. Click here to watch her testimony.