Based in Toronto, ON, CantoMando consists of three members: Sheldon Ho, Edward Leung and Mike Wu. These Youtubers are known for their humour, creativity and Asian related content they produce. We had the opportunity to ask them a few questions to get to know them a little bit better, so here it is:
What inspired you to start a YouTube channel?
“At the time I (Sheldon) was learning Mandarin and I found Mandarin really easy to learn since I had a background in Cantonese. Most of my life, I had struggled with Asian identity and accepting it. I decided to learn Mandarin simply for business purposes, but it turns out you can’t learn a language without immersing yourself in the culture. As I learned Mandarin more and more, my Cantonese improved as well, and I found that I really appreciated and loved Chinese culture. About 6 months into learning Mandarin, I was doing a co-op in Perth, Ontario, and I was really bored (small town). I thought about how much fun I had learning Mandarin, and how so many of my Cantonese speaking friends wanted to learn. It was easy to learn, but there were no catered resources for people like me (people with background in Cantonese, but Cantonese is still mediocre). Resources for English speakers were too simple and boring, while resources for native Cantonese speakers were too advanced. So I decided to make educational videos for that purpose in hopes that it’d help other people with accepting their culture as well. Over time, it became comedy skits and it became what it is today.”
What’s one of the biggest challenges you had to face balancing CantoMando and school?
“I’m currently in school but was working before, and Edward and Mike are currently working. The biggest challenge is mental and physical fatigue. Often, we’re pretty sleep deprived and mentally tired since we come home from a long day of work or school and immediately start working on CantoMando stuff. Another big challenge is work-life balance. Since CantoMando is basically a second job, we’re basically always working hahaha. “
How do you guys come up with skit/video ideas?
“Generally, we just get in a circle and start talking about different experiences from our childhood, and different experiences we had growing up. We’ll then find a topic we like and then start thinking about a skit idea around it. We know it’ll be good when we all start laughing at the thought of the skit.”
Most embarrassing moments while filming?
“Definitely anything in public hahaha. I remember for one skit, we were in New York City’s Times Square and we had to get into the Asian mom and dad costume in front of everyone. It was also freezing cold so it was funny seeing everyone walk by to see a guy with a towel on his head and in a pajama dress. For our Types of Asian Couples video, we took up a corner at Markville Mall, a section at Angus Glen Library, as well as a restaurant, and we were all pretending to be a woman at some point in the video. The amount of weird looks we got walking around in our costumes was definitely a little embarrassing. To be honest, we’re pretty numb to it now though haha.”
We are so excited to have these three awesome individuals host Western Voice 2019 and we hope all of you will be there with us! In the meantime, make sure you follow them on Instagram @CantoMando and subscribe to them on YouTube!
P.S. check out their website: https://www.cantomandomedia.com/