Troye Si­van

The boy won­der who’s gone from mak­ing videos in his bed­room to be­ing the coun­try’s most ex­cit­ing new mu­sic act.


On Au­gust 7, 2013, Troye Si­van up­loaded a video to his Youtube ac­count. Un­til then, the 60 or so clips he’d posted ranged from song cov­ers to light-hearted re­la­tion­ship ad­vice, but this was to be his most per­sonal. “This is prob­a­bly the most ner­vous I’ve ever been,” he says, talk­ing di­rectly to the cam­era. “This could change every­thing for me.” Si­van goes on to ex­plain the date marks two years since com­ing out to his fam­ily as gay. It was the frst time he’s re­vealed it pub­licly. Two years on we’re in a Syd­ney photo stu­dio, Si­van hav­ing jet­ted in from LA. Skinny and boy­ish, the 20-year-old was born in South Africa but grew up in Perth – and when not trav­el­ling, he still lives there with his fam­ily. Si­van’s Youtube videos have now been viewed 205 mil­lion times, and he has more than 10 mil­lion fol­low­ers across so­cial me­dia. Last year, his frst al­bum, TRXYE, went to No.1 in 66 coun­tries, and new EP, ‘WILD’, de­buted at the top of the ARIA charts this Septem­ber – Sam Smith and Tay­lor Swift quickly tweet­ing their ap­proval. His next full-length al­bum, Blue Neigh­bour­hood, is out De­cem­ber 4. As GQ’S stylist fts him into the frst of his looks – a Dior tuxedo spe­cially flown in from Shang­hai – it seems Si­van was right all along. Every­thing has changed.

What im­pact did com­ing out have?

I get mes­sages about that video ev­ery day – it’s the most im­por­tant thing I’ve ever done. I don’t re­ally be­lieve in God, but if there’s a sin­gle rea­son I was given this Youtube au­di­ence, it’s to maybe help LGBTQ [les­bian, gay, bi­sex­ual, trans­gen­der, queer] kids watch­ing my videos.

Do you ever re­flect on how many peo­ple fol­low you?

I re­mem­ber when I had more sub­scribers on Youtube than peo­ple who live in Perth. I was look­ing at the city think­ing about the kind of in­fras­truc­ture re­quired, if I got ev­ery­one to­gether – it would be like a city. That was a mind-blow­ing mo­ment.

Be­sides Youtube, you’ve dab­bled in mod­el­ling and act­ing. Are you more into mu­sic now?

For sure. My Youtube chan­nel has al­ways been a place to con­nect with peo­ple, and what’s cool is the mu­sic seems to be get­ting as much re­sponse as any other videos I’ve put out – I’m re­ally ex­cited they care.

Were you sur­prised how well did?

TRXYE Crazy sur­prised. I’ve grown up with the in­ter­net so I’ve been build­ing this con­nec­tion with peo­ple who I’ve never met. But I wasn’t sure it was go­ing to trans­late to mu­sic sales.

Your fans are pretty pas­sion­ate. Are you ever wor­ried they’ll just buy any­thing?

There is that, but I’ve had other press – it’s not just fans who are hear­ing the mu­sic. I’d say I have a good bal­ance of un­con­di­tional love and peo­ple who are ready to have a go if the al­bum’s not that good.

Does it feel like mu­sic is now your pro­fes­sion?

There’s a lot less money in mu­sic than else­where. Mu­sic is my day-to-day job, but it’s a pas­sion project, 100 per cent. I love what I do. I would pay peo­ple to let me do this.

You’re pretty ac­tive on every­thing from Snapchat to Tum­blr. Ever get tired of it all?

I en­joy the process be­cause you post some­thing and get an im­me­di­ate re­sponse. I’ll just sit there, hit­ting re­fresh and read­ing peo­ple’s replies. It’s like a drug.

Clock­wise, from top left: black wool/mo­hair jacket, $4600, black wool/mo­hair waistcoat, $980, white cot­ton shirt, $1050, black satin bow tie, $180, black wool/mo­hair trousers, $1200, and black satin cum­mer­bund, $660, all by Dior Homme. Wool/cash­mere jacket, $4300, cot­ton shirt, $640, and silk tie, $500, all by Dior Homme. Grey wool/silk jacket, $3600, navy/grey wool-blend vest, $3600, white cot­ton shirt, $640, black silk/satin tie, $230, and grey wool/ silk trousers, $1000, all by Dior Homme. Wool/mo­hair coat, $5000, wool/mo­hair jacket, $4600, wool/ mo­hair waistcoat, $980, cot­ton shirt, $1050, satin bow tie, $180, wool/ mo­hair trousers, $1200, and satin cum­mer­bund, $660, all by Dior Homme. Groom­ing: Tiarna Car­mont at De­tail for Men.

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