Fifteen years after appearing on American Idol, Sanjaya Malakar, who was mostly known for his wacky hairdo's than his singing talent has come out as bisexual.
Fifteen years after appearing on American Idol, Sanjaya Malakar has officially come out as bisexual.
The singer auditioned for the iconic reality show as a teenager, making it all the way to the top 7 before being eliminated despite finding a repetitive dissenter in judge Simon Cowell. He was a surprisingly contentious contender for a 16-year-old, to the point where Saturday Night Live even did a bit about it.
Speculation about his sexuality also ran rampant at the time, and a couple years later, when he joined up with I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here, Malakar was put on the spot and ultimately denied being queer.
“A lot of people want me to be their gay best friend and I make a really good gay best friend, but I don’t like guys, so it confuses people,” he said at the time.
The 32-year-old spoke about that denial and figuring out his own sexuality during a recent chat on the Adam Sank Show podcast, acknowledging that he now freely identifies as bisexual.
“At the time, I did not not know, which was why it was so weird for me,” he said. “I was raised by women, I was in theater, I had a hard time figuring out how to interact with young boys.”
Malakar said that people telling him he was gay made him feeling like they were “forcing me to make a decision, and to define myself,” which led to him denying that he was into guys at all.
“Everyone [kept] telling me that I’m gay, and I’m like, seven. I’m like, I don’t even have any attraction to anyone, so why are you telling me this?” he recalled.
But that was a long time ago, and self-reflection has led Malakar, who now works as a pastry chef, to a more comfortable, confident place with his identity as an adult.
“At this point, I don’t care what people know of my sexuality,” he said.