SAUCY Taiwanese getai cross-dressing singer, Aven Hao Hao, 29, is trying very hard to be ladylike this year.
The getai crooner, who is now based in Singapore, also has a full-time gig at NTUC Club in AMK Hub all year round.
The singer, who was voted fourth most popular getai personality in the Stomp Top 10 Getai People's Choice Award, rattled off a list of costumes in store for this year's Hungry Ghost festival, which he described as "demure".
These include an ethnic Japanese costume, a Korean costume and a Western bridal gown. Was he toning down after last year's outrageous Marilyn Monroe get-up, resulting in him getting hauled into an Ang Mo Kio police station for allegedly being "indecently attired"?
Fortunately for him then, he was let off with a warning.
He told The New Paper on Thursday at Ang Mo Kio Avenue 3, where he was performing in Hokkien except for one Mandarin song,: "Yeah, it's definitely in response to that. If they (police) didn't say a word, I'd definitely reveal (flesh)!"
But his attempt to toe the line has not been that successful. Hao Hao later appeared on stage in a skin-tight sequinned tasselled slip dress, patterned after the American flag, exposing lots of leg.
Isn't that a tad revealing? Nah, he said.
"What did I expose? My legs. Don't you girls wear skirts too? Revealing means to show your undies," he said.
The singer, who started his getai career at the age of 13 in Taipei and has performed in Singapore for the past three years, also found himself in an awkward situation last night. Sexy Hong Kong getai singer Bai Mei Hui teased Hao Hao for his poor Cantonese as they bantered in the dialect on stage, advising him to polish it up.
Hao Hao had mispronounced a word, which came out sounding like a Cantonese vulgarity.
Lianhe Wanbao had reported on the boo-boo lastnight. The paper reported that Hao Hao was quick-witted and reacted quickly to the error by clarifying the mispronunciation.
Members of the audience also cheered for Hao Hao in support and praised him for his wit.
Hao Hao said that his popularity has not suffered, despite toning down his act. "Since the (police) questioning, I let the matter rest and didn't cross dress for six months." The audience has responded well to his male costumes, he said, so he's not worried.
Hao Hao began cross-dressing at 20 when he was fresh out of the army, He took his acts to the local getai scene in 2008, and said he now "prefers to work here". "Singapore's scene is smaller, with far less cut-throat competition. The Taiwan scene is too competitive, with too many artistes" he said.
He lamented: "How many people can become Jay Chou?"
Despite wearing women's clothes in the name of art, Hao Hao insists that he likes women, and not men.
But he said he's not in a hurry to tie the knot. "There's no point in forcing things if the timing isn't right. Anyway, when I do get married, my wife comes in third place, after my career, which takes first place and then my mother."
This article was first published in The New Paper.