Ali Isakov’s of mixed Kazakh and African heritage. Ali was born to a single mother in Tashkent in 1991. He grew up with his mother until he was 10. His mother was a sales assistant, and they could hardly make both ends meet in the disastrous period after the breakup of the USSR. When he turned 10, she decided to go back to Kazakhstan, her homeland. They headed to a village near Karaganda, in hope that their relatives who lived there would help them. However, when they saw the colour of his skin, they turned Ali and his mother down.
All that he knows about his father is that he was from Africa. When Ali’s mother learnt that her relatives weren’t going to help them, she had to send her son to the children’s home. Ali says that he got used to the fact that was alone, and he doesn’t want to revive a connection with his mother, who sometimes sends letters to him. However, Ali still cares about his mother and keeps all the letters from her in a folder with his ID documents. It was very difficult for him to be different. It was difficult in the orphanage, and was even more difficult because he was the only one with black skin there. Ali kept asking himself questions, like, “Why am I different?”, “Why don’t I have a loving family?”, and “Why do I always have to prove to other people that I’m Kazakh?”
When Ali was a child, he’d always lose control when he heard, “Hey, nigger!” from his classmates and put up a fight. Besides that, he couldn’t read until he was 12, and that made the situation even worse. Only now, when he’s a bit more mature, he’s learnt how to turn every comment on his skin colour into a jest. In high school, he began participating in KVN, a humour show and competition, which made him realise that his looks were a big advantage rather than a disadvantage. Ali was so good playing for Bolashak College that the principal asked him to enter the college to stay on the team. Ali agreed, and he enrolled in the faculty of foreign languages to become an interpreter. He understood that if he were to become a successful showman, he’d have to be witty and well-educated. Now, he studies hard, hitting the books, trying to perfect himself.
If he wanted to, Ali could find work as an interpreter or an official. However, he can’t imagine himself anywhere but on stage, and he thinks it the only right choice for him. He only feels really alive when he’s on stage. In those moments of triumph, he understands that he must work harder, because he deserves the best! His unusual look is what makes him special. People are surprised seeing a black guy speaking the Kazakh language perfectly. Apart from success and fame, Ali dreams of having his own family. He wants a good marriage, to have children. He wants to have people to love and cherish. He’ll do anything to avoid making the same mistakes that his parents did. He wants his children to know who their father is and to be proud of him.