On a recent kids talent show in the UK called Child Genius , young Chinese prodigy Gar Jun Ho came top in the quarter-final of the science quiz. But he only received stinging criticisms from his mother for mistakes that he had made. Chinese parents are renowned for giving their kids a strict upbringing and of being heavily critical of them if they do not live up to the high standards they set. The reaction of Ho’s mother drew angry comments from netizens and reignited debates on the Asian style of tiger parenting. Here is Ho’s experience – and three other well-known Chinese public figures who can relate to it. Gar Jun Ho The 12-year-old could read and write by three years old, learned the multiplications table by four and passed his Grade Five piano exam by eight, according to the Child Genius . He beat 100 prodigies on the show to reach the week-long final. But even this was not good enough for Ho’s mother. “Each time you didn’t achieve 100 per cent, you rushed too much. That’s why you made mistakes,” his mother Faye said after the contest. His parents made him study every day for the programme and gave him only three minutes to rest between lessons. A comment on Twitter read: “Garjun’s mum is too much! Let your children have fun. They are young for such a short time. Horrible to see him pushed so hard.” Hong Kong pianist at peace with controversial choice of Lang Lang for handover show Lang Lang There is a possibility Ho may become the next Lang Lang, whose father Lang Guoren was equally harsh when the renowned pianist was young. When he was five years old, Lang’s father quit his job and brought his son to Beijing for piano classes. But the boy was later kicked out by the teacher who thought he lacked musical talent. His father was furious and told him to kill himself with pills and jump off the building, Lang wrote in his autobiography Journey of a Thousand Miles . “I never begged my parents to take off the pressure. I accepted it; I even enjoyed it,” he wrote. Huang Doudou Like Lang, Huang Doudou, one of the most successful Chinese classical dancers in China, also has a strict dad. He auditioned for the Beijing Dance Academy following his parent’s wishes, but failed twice as the judges thought his legs were too short. His father then hung him upside down every day after school to elongate his legs, hooking both his feet onto a pair of iron rings hanging from a roof beam. He grew three centimetres in height in three months and was eventually accepted to the Shanghai Dance School. “As the only child in the family, I received all the love from my parents and all their hopes and pressures,” he said. Dong Qing Dong Qing has hosted the annual China state television’s CCTV New Year’s Gala since 2005 and many other shows in China. Dong’s parents forbade her from looking in the mirror and wearing new clothes when she was a child so she would keep her focus on her education instead of beauty. She was forced to recite Chinese poems and run 1,000 metres every morning, Dong said in a 2012 TV interview. She said she hated her parents but later realised their tough training had contributed to her success.