It all began in 1977 when Grandmaster Ngu was studying at John Abott College in Quebec for his CEGET, pre-university studies. At that time, he had no intention or aspiration to become a full-time instructor with hundreds of students training at several clubs across Ontario and Quebec. He simply wanted some training partners, and he decided to take on a few students. They trained in a classroom in the basement of the residence they lived in. In just a few months, this training group grew to almost 30 students studying White Crane under Grandmaster Ngu. This prompted him to apply to the school to set up an actual class/program with a designated schedule and training area.
Later, Grandmaster Ngu moved to Concordia University to study engineering. Here he started “The Kung Fu Club”. The members of this club trained in the gymnasium where they shared the space with other martial arts practitioners. This meant there wasn’t much space for them to train, and sometimes their training had to be cancelled for periods of time due to exams being held in the gym. Solution? Open a club.
This is when Grandmaster Ngu teamed up with a Tai Chi instructor and together they opened a club in Old Montreal on Notre Dame Street in an old building on the 5th floor. There was no washroom, but the rent was cheap. They had wood floors and lots of space to train in. At this time, the “Shaolin White Crane Kung Fu Society” was born. Over the years, they moved from the 5th floor to the 3rd, and later to the 2nd where they had a much nicer club with a washroom, air-conditioning, etc. At this time he was still just teaching part-time. Finding a job as an engineer in Montreal was difficult at that time, so Grandmaster Ngu decided to move to Toronto, Ontario. Although he was now living in Toronto, he still traveled to Montreal 2-3 times each week to maintain the club, keep it growing, and strengthen it so that it would carry on without him one day.
While in Toronto, he chose to put more focus on his Wing Chun and Northern Shaolin training. For this reason, there was not a club in Toronto for a few years. However, he did introduce Wing Chun and Northern Shaolin to the curriculum of the Montreal club in the early 1980’s. When training with Sifu Dun Wah at Sunny Tang Kung Fu Studios, Grandmaster Ngu was given the responsibility of teaching the children’s classes. Now that his personal training was on track, the Montreal club was strong, and he had memorized every curve of the roads between Toronto and Montreal, it was time to start a club in Mississauga. In 1991, he started a new club on Lakeshore and later at Queensway and Cawthra via a time-share with a dance club.
In 1994 came an important turning point in Grandmaster Ngu’s career. I say this because this is when he began teaching Kung Fu full-time and opened the “All Masters Martial Arts Centre” in Mississauga, at Dixie and Matheson. The name of the school was chosen to represent and honour all the masters that Grandmaster Ngu studied under. This new school has adult classes in both White Crane and Wing Chun, as well as children’s classes in Northern Shaolin. We also had and still have guest masters visit our club to teach seminars in other styles such as Cha-Chuan, Chin-Nah, Tai-Chi, Chi-Kung, and others. In 1998, the club had gotten so large that Grandmaster Ngu decided to increase its size by leasing the unit next us and joining the two. All Masters in Mississauga now has three training studios and a store selling martial arts equipment and supplies.
In additional to teaching Kung Fu, Grandmaster Ngu also promotes Chinese culture through the art of Lion and Dragon Dance. Since the early 1990’s, more and more students have been practicing Lion Dance and performing all over Ontario at high caliber events and also in the U.S. Grandmaster Ngu no had a vision to take this club further than he ever thought 35 years ago. In 1997 he founded the “All Masters Lion Dance Cultural Association”. This is a non-profit organization that operates independently from the club. All income was and is used to improve the association by getting more lion heads and drums, sponsoring its members to participate in competitions and even to attend Lion and Dragon dance training seminars in China in August of 2002. This lion dance troupe is now one of the largest in North America thanks to Grandmaster Ngu’s foresight and leadership, as well as the devotion of its loyal members who now share his vision.
It is now 2013 and Grandmaster Ngu has been teaching in Canada for 36 years. In addition to his large club in Mississauga, he has senior students operating their own branches of the club also. His vision is much larger and his responsibilities in the Martial Arts community are ever increasing as others recognize and share this vision to promote Kung Fu across North America and internationally.