Kumar dishes the dirt ahead of new show K by Kumar

Elizabeth Soh
Elizabeth Soh
Singapore Showbiz

Singapore's most famous Drag Queen and proud of it (Photo courtesy of Kumar)

He is Singapore's most beloved drag queen, a stand-up comedian, an actor, entertainer and an author.

But despite seeming always larger than life, Kumar, 45, draws his comedic inspiration from the most humble things — he is inspired by visits to coffeeshops and markets in Ang Mo Kio, and simple acts like munching on a particularly messy curry puff.

In his new show, K by Kumar, makes fresh, accurate observations about Singapore life and gives startling insights into the trials and tribulations of life on our sunny island — all with his signature irreverent, uncensored sense of humour.

Yahoo! Singapore had tea (and curry puffs) with the man himself to find out what else he's been up to.

In his own words

"In K by Kumar, I want to say what I want to say without being politically correct. I can't say all this on television, they are very scared of me saying something 'wrong', but now I can say on social media," he said gleefully.

A main focus of the K by Kumar show will be his take on the lack of communication in our society.

Singaporeans, he said, have lost the battle to connect with each other to technology.

"I don't believe in technology, hence I have no laptop," said Kumar, who is also proud of his app-less smartphone and the grand total of four photos that he has taken using his mobile phone's camera.

"I want people to call me and talk, and communicate. When you lose your phone, you lose your life -- that's the state of affairs now.

"I always say, don't Facebook your problem, face your problem!"

His serious side

And face his problems Kumar does. When asked on his take on this year's National Day Rally, he let out a distinctively unladylike snort and immediately gave his two cents worth.

"Get rid of the foreigners," he deadpanned.

He also believes that Singaporeans lack the motivation to climb up the career ladder not because they are not driven -- but because they are discouraged by the foreigners employed above them.

He also said that education should be cheap, or free.

"Every young person I meet these days wants to migrate! The middle class are not taken care of. As someone in the sandwich class, I am suffering but nobody cares," he quipped.

"Malays cry a bit, Mendaki come, I cry, no one comes -- SINDA only gives me tissues."

There's more…

"The cost of living these days is so high that if your family wants to go on holiday, you need to plan, save and get stressed for six months to go on holiday for three days!" he added, keeping a poker face.

Would he consider an alternative career as a politician, then?

"Never. Then I won't be funny anymore," he replied in an instant.

kumar hams it up for K by Kumar, his latest (and possibly funniest) web show yet (Yahoo! Photo)

Beauty tips and 'how to keep your husband'

Even in his allegedly hungover state, Kumar still exudes diva-ness from every pore -- from his oversized Dior glasses and fitted shirt to his baggy harem pants that look like something from Yohji Yamamoto but which turned out to be from Bugis Village.

So what is the secret to his smooth, youthful skin, perfectly applied make-up and svelte figure?

A diet free of rice -- and prata -- apparently, is what keeps the pounds away. He also enjoys healthier food like fried-fish soup.

"I cook a lot. I cook at home almost every day. I try new things, new flavours," said the enthusiastic homecook, who recently made nasi lemak completely from scratch.

"Nowadays, everything is pre-made. So, all you wives, don't complain you're tired and you got no time to cook after work, there is no excuse.

"They always say, the way to a man's heart is through his stomach and it's still true. If you want to keep your hubby happy, better cook. If not, got China and Vietnam girls waiting just outside your door," he said jokingly.

Other tips?

"I tell my girl friends -- marry on your husband's birthday, so they never forget your wedding anniversary," he said, adding that high expectations kill good marriages.

His good skin, however, is hereditary.

Will the real Kumar please stand up?

Despite bringing laughter and comic relief to thousands of stressed-out Singaporeans, Kumar said that his true personality is "10 times" different from the persona he portrays on stage.

"I have a split personality," he said.

"When I am in drag, and I put on make-up, I become a different person. It's like a clown -- every clown has a tear, and there is a sad story behind every tear. It's the same for me. When I'm on stage, that is when I am the happiest."

His rags-to-drags story (also the name of his self-penned autobiography) has been well documented in the media -- from his parents' initial refusal to accept his cross-dressing ways to a difficult childhood and being allegedly molested by an older man when he was just 10 years old.

Kumar only came out about being homosexual two years ago, revealing then that he was in a relationship with an unidentified 23-year-old man.

Well, there's no denying he has a gift — of being able to communicate with people from all walks of life through his unique brand of humour.

"Stand-up comedy can't be learned. To be a stand-up comedian, one needs to be thick-skinned and throw the ego out," he said.

"But through comedy, you can really get a message through."

K by Kumar will premiere on 3 October, right here on Yahoo! Singapore.

Follow Kumar on these social media channels for updates:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KbyKumar
Twitter: @kbykumar
Instagram: kbykumar