Cover Outfit: Dior; Watches & jewellery: Chopard

The popular Malaysian singer-actress is remarkably down-to-earth with an incredible work ethic. Below is an excerpt of our July 2021 cover story.

Speaking to Daiyan Trisha is like hanging out with a friend as she’s approachable, open and laughs a lot, especially when she reminisced those days growing up with her siblings with whom she’s close to till today.

“I was such a nerd,” she laughs. “When I was little, my sisters and I were all about anime and comic books. And when we go to people’s houses (for visitation) we were these nerds who would rather read comic books than socialise!”

She insists that she still can be nerdy sometimes, particularly when people catch her off guard on camera and she’s “just being myself.”

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However, any signs of said trait were not present throughout the day I spent with her in the park for this shoot. She was game for anything the photographer required of her, from twirling, jumping and running to climbing up trees—all under the hot sun, no less (Disclaimer: No plants or trees were harmed during the production of this photoshoot).

Any lesser being would have withered. But not this spunky 27-year-old, whose beaming smile never faltered while shooting was underway.

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Having established herself as a singer, songwriter, actress and poet, with a self-produced album and 1.5 million followers on Instagram, Daiyan’s talent, sincerity, authenticity and high content engagement are what make her sought after by brands and other artistes that want to work with her. Case in point: In 2019 she went on her first Southeast Asia tour with American YouTube sensation Sam Tsui as his opening act. And in 2016, she collaborated with Indonesian singer Calvin Jeremy on the single Kita for which she got a nomination at the Anugerah Plaza Muzik in 2017 for Best Collaboration.

“I feel this happens when you just put yourself out there and show people that you’re open to working with them, and only then they would think of you,” remarks Daiyan matter-of-factly. “Travelling and working with people outside of Malaysia has given me new perspectives and another mindset that is needed for me to develop more as a person if I want to go on a global level. If there’s an opportunity to just go out and show yourself to the world and put Malaysia on the map, why not?”

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With her dual talent in singing and acting, she is able to merge both in some of the TV series or telemovies she’s in. She sang the theme song Kerana Kau for her acting debut in Dee the Series, in which she played the titular role, and lends her voice to the movie Busker with the song Ingat.

Daiyan has also appeared in Girlfriend Kontrak alongside Keith Foo and Bront Palarae, My Coffee Prince with Diana Danielle and Sean Lee, and Project: Anchor SPM with Aedy Ashraf and Tony Eusoff. She’s in talks for a new drama series but in the meantime Daiyan is keeping busy with brand and musical collaborations as well as being the new host of Muzik Muzik 36, a weekly fan-voted music chart show on TV3 that will ultimately culminate in Anugerah Juara Lagu (AJL), Malaysia’s longest-running annual music awards which honour the composers and lyricists of the winning song of the year.

Daiyan’s very excited to be a part of this because as an artiste herself, she has the opportunity and means to help innovate a stagnating music industry. “As a singer-songwriter, I could use my insight and bring more substance to the show because I would know what to ask the other artistes.”

See also: 6 Asian Women Around The World Changing The Face Of Music

Want to read the rest of the story? Get your complimentary digital copy of July 2021 issue here.

  • PhotographyPaulius Staniunas
  • StylingAzza Arif
  • Make-UpShiyo Joo
  • HairCkay Liow
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