Scha a star

Former air stewardess Scha Al-Yahya finds her niche in acting.

THE beautiful Scha Al-Yahya first gained attention after appearing in the highly popular drama series Awan Dania on Astro Ria. Now in its third season, Awan Dania is a light and fun TV series about the life of Dania, a rough, tough and boyish girl whose ultimate dream is to be a flight stewardess.

Next, her brave portrayal of a lesbian in James Lee’s Histeria in 2008 further propelled her to fame.

Scha and ZedZaidi during abreak in thefilming of AwanDania seasonthree in Perth,Australia, latelast year.

Having dabbled in acting for about four years now, the former stewardess who made her film debut in the local sci-fi horror flick Antoo Fighter last year, is today a much sought-after actress by local producers.

Ironically, Scha – who won the Hot Chick Award at the 8TV Shout Awards 2010 – said that acting was never part of her plan.

The acting offers came, by chance, after she won the title of Dewi Remaja 2007. Scha, 28, whose real name is Sharifah Nor Azean Syed Mahadzir Al-Yahya, was asked to attend numerous casting sessions, but Scha said she wasn’t interested at the time. When she finally relented and went for a casting call one day, it changed her life.

The 1.69m-tall beauty began dabbling in modelling and television commercials before turning to the silver screen. You would have seen her in ads for Maxis Hotlink, Oral B, Bio-Essence, Carefree and MyEG.

Scha worked for AirAsia after completing her diploma in Information Technology at a local college.

“Although I love travelling, flying was tiring!” said Scha, who worked as a stewardess for 18 months.

She then went on to model, and the progression from TV commercials to acting was inevitable. Scha has worked on a number of movies, including Histeria, Papadom, Evolusi KL Drift2 and Dimensi Cinta.

About-turn:For someone whodid not plan to act,Scha Al-Yahya hasdone very well forherself, havingacted in severalmovies in barelyfour years.

Her other yet-to-be-screened movies are Libas (where she plays the lead alongside Rosyam Nor), Awan Dania The Movie (also the lead with Rusdi Ramli), Papadom 2 and Skop Productions’ Aku Bukan Tomboy.

Scha was embroiled in controversy when she was involved with TV host Fahrin Ahmad in 2009, Scha is now happy with her beau of more than one year, Awal Ashaari.

“Awal has been my pillar of strength. He’s cool and I’m just so grateful to him,” said Scha, adding that they have not planned for their big day yet. “Both of us are very busy with our careers at the moment. Everything is good between us and I’m very happy. And we both agreed not to work together in any dramas and movies – just to keep our private lives separate from our careers.”

Scha understands that her private life can’t always be kept under wraps because of the nature of her job. She tries to stay focused on work, giving her best to every acting job; she hopes her work speaks for itself.

Scha is one of Astro’s four “exclusive” faces (stars who aren’t allowed to appear on other TV stations) along with Erra Fazira, Aaron Aziz and Farid Kamil. For someone who only wanted to give acting a try, she’s done pretty well; her drama credits include Bella, Honeyz, Awan Dania, Naik Hantu, Awan Dania 2 & 3 and Dunia Kita Carefree.

Venturing out of her comfort zone of playing tomboy characters, Scha is happy that she’s about to play a more feminine role in Michael Ang’s drama series Mimi Mencari Cinta alongside Zizan Nin.

She is also about to start work on a new thriller Darah Daging.

“I play a policewoman in this thriller, and went through an acting workshop prior to filming – I found it to be fun and a really great experience,” said Scha, adding that soon she will be busy filming drama series Prebet Jamilah Season 2, also with Ang as the director.

Awan Dania airs on Astro Ria (Astro channel 104) on Mondays at 9.30pm; Dunia Kita are free will be screened on Astro Ria on Fridays at 7.30pm, beginning May 27.