Off the beaten track with Abigail Chay

Updated: Jul 9

Abigail Chay is a performer from Under One Roof, and is widely known for her comedic roles in local media, both on TV shows and movies. Despite her being typecast into funny, characters who usually have comical outbursts, Chay has her own struggles offscreen and her fair share of pain and vulnerability.

In 2018, the FLUX Media team sat down with local entertainment performer Abigail Chay, to find out about her personal life off-screen, To open the interview, we asked Chay what the darkest period of her life was.

Chay shared that her mother had passed away and she happened to have a show just before her wake. She shares that her mother was very blessed because there were no rooms for her after she had passed on, so Chay had to wait for a few days. While waiting for the few days to pass, she had a show.

She missed her mother so much that she had a migraine, but she had to turn up for her scheduled shows as her clients and entertainment companies were expecting her.

However, she recalls that her clients were all extremely understanding, and assured her that she could take some time off if she needed to, but Chay reminded herself of what her mother would have told her if she could talk to her.

“She would say, go. It’s only professional.”

She went for her show with her mother’s image in her mind, and imagined her mother telling her, “Go, girl, go!”

While she admitted that thinking of her mother in that way brought tears to her eyes, remembering her mother’s cheerful demeanour and smile drove her to complete her show without any grief.

She remained her usual self, doing comedy, envisioning her mother laughing while she watched over Abigail.

Chay shared how she had surpassed her clients’ expectations after the show, and was even offered another show.

“It was hard, emotionally, but I conquered it with positive emotional tuning. When you’re not feeling good, as an entertainer, you have to fill yourself with something that will cheer you up. So I imagined that she was cheering me on.”

She also fondly shares that her mother was the famous McDonalds Granny who appeared in commercials for the fast food chain in the 90s.

“Even now, people still remember her as the McDonald’s grandmother.”

When asked if Chay’s mother had motivated her to join the entertainment scene, since her mother was a model as well, she responded in affirmative. “She always joked that you’re an ugly duckling, I could never have a daughter like you. Even before I became Abigail Chay, she asked if I was interested in modelling, and I said yes, not knowing that I actually wanted to be a female model.”

Chay’s mother sent her to modelling classes, but revealed that she had actually secretly gone to learn about female modelling, as she had not yet transitioned then.

She also shared some common misconceptions many people had about her.

People thought that she was a biological female but with a husky voice, before she revealed to the public that she had undergone a sex change.

When the team met up with Abigail last year

Now, people think that she’s crazy! She shares that people have a common perception that she is not serious, and sometimes when she is involved in secular projects, people avoid engaging her for more serious roles in their shows.

“I want to let them know that I can do more serious roles too,” she adds.

Chay also reveals her vulnerability when questioned about her decision to undergo a transition.

She shares that she was raised in a strict Christian household, and felt a lot of guilt for looking at other men, for example. She felt that she was a woman stuck inside a man’s body, and made up her mind to talk to her pa