Desmond Tan reveals how his new wife stayed a secret for 12 years

Instagram/Desmond Tan

First it was Kym Ng. Then Rebecca Lim, followed by Desmond Tan.

Given how small and crowded Singapore is, and how nifty the locals are at snapping videos and posting them online, we wonder how these celebrities' other halves have remained anonymous to the media and public.

Especially when Desmond — who entered showbiz in 2007 — dated his wife for 12 long years.

When AsiaOne caught up with the 35-year-old recently during the promotion for his new Mandarin drama Home Again, we asked how he managed to keep his romance and the woman a mystery.

"I always believe that life is a choice. You can always go to places where people don't really bother taking photos of you," Desmond said.

"The hawker centre that I go to, almost everyone has seen us together but I think they are very respectful and they see us as normal human beings. I think that's the beauty of some Singaporeans, like, they know you but they don't really invade your privacy. That's something that we appreciate of Singaporeans and also the local audience."

As far as he knows, no photo of them in public together has been posted online and it's something he's grateful for. Their wedding photos posted on his Instagram in December last year are the only ones he's ever released of her, and all we can see is her lovely back.

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"Privacy is something that is very precious. It's my choice to be an actor and to be in the public eye but not my loved ones. So even till now, my family haven't really been featured in public because I want them to live their life normally, where they can just walk down the street without being recognised as Desmond Tan's parents," he added.

Home Again, which also stars Pierre Png, Ya Hui, Edwin Goh and Zheng Wanling, is available on demand for free on meWATCH from today (Jan 17) and also on Channel 8 from Jan 18 at 9pm.

In the drama, Desmond plays Jiankang, who was kidnapped as a child and trafficked to Thailand to be a child labourer. When he reunites with his family 25 years later, his sudden appearance causes ripples and uneasiness among them and within the family's vegetable farm.

kwokkarpeng@asiaone.com