Facetime with Troye Si­van

Variety - - Contents - In­ter­view by JAMES PA­TRICK HER­MAN Pho­to­graph by JIM WRIGHT

Troye Si­van’s road to pop star­dom faced two hur­dles: dis­tance (he hails from re­mote Perth, Aus­tralia) and his sex­u­al­ity (he came out at age 18). But with a role along­side Ni­cole Kid­man and Rus­sell Crowe in “Boy Erased” fol­low­ing vi­ral videos on Youtube, a top-10 de­but (2015’s “Blue Neigh­bor­hood”) and duets with Tay­lor Swift and Ari­ana Grande, Si­van has truly ar­rived.

Your al­bum “Bloom,” which drops Aug. 31, is rel­a­tively com­pact. Why only 10 songs?

It feels like a bold state­ment — to be able to sum up my life and where I’m at, and who I am as a mu­si­cian and as a writer, in 10 songs. That felt like a chal­lenge.

Do you strug­gle with in­ter­nal­ized ho­mo­pho­bia?

To­tally. I used to strug­gle with it a lot more than I do now, and I can al­most laugh at it when it rears its ugly head. I was think­ing about a mo­ment on the “Bloom” shoot where I was ac­tu­al­iz­ing this vi­sion I had for this ex­tremely flam­boy­ant mu­sic video and I caught my­self in the mir­ror and my heart sank. I felt 14 again. Like, “Is this OK?” And of course it’s OK. It’s what I wanted to do. I felt cool. I felt sexy. Yet there was that in­ter­nal­ized ho­mo­pho­bia mak­ing me doubt my­self and ques­tion my­self. It’s hard to shake that kind of thing.

At the same time, you’re so sex-positive.

With my first al­bum I felt the need to ed­u­cate peo­ple a lit­tle more. I wanted to hold the hand of some­one who isn’t queer and gen­tly ease them into a queer love story that was su­per-pg. This time around, I wanted to write mu­sic for peo­ple like me — hon­est mu­sic.

You started out so young in the busi­ness. Have you ever ex­pe­ri­enced sex­ual ha­rass­ment or abuse?

I ac­tu­ally have when I was re­ally young. And thank­fully it didn’t go as far as it could have. I’m lucky I avoided that. But some­one said to me, “What if that per­son is do­ing that to some­body else?” And that has re­ally stuck with me.

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