Celebrating the queer representation in the music of Troye Sivan

The artist has always made an impact, unafraid to be completely himself.

A young man poses moodily

Pop culture guru David Ferguson is back, taking a look at the music of Troye Sivan.

As the new music video has just dropped for the Troye Sivan song ‘You’ (a collaboration with Kosovo-Albanian DJ Regard and Canadian singer Tate McRae). I thought I’d look back at some of the videos of an artist who was never afraid to be himself on screen.

Troye Sivan is one of a small number of artists that I discovered through their music videos. Someone told me about the ‘Blue Neighbourhood Trilogy’ of videos which were for three songs from his first album: ‘Wild’ (first single), ‘Fool’ and ‘Take Me Down’.

The videos follow the storyline of Sivan and his fictional childhood friend and love interest and their relationship struggles. Having come out before the album’s release, he was very open about his sexuality with an Australian newspaper, The Herald Sun, commenting that his lyrics did “not [shy] away from pronouns like many before him.”

I remember finding it so refreshing to see a gay love story reflected in a music video. It felt so different but has become a theme many of Sivan’s videos.

The final single ‘Heaven’, featuring fellow Australian singer Betty Who, had a video highlighting LGBTQ+ activism (including the likes of Harvey Milk) and LGBTQ+ couples, along with some intimate shots with him and an anonymous male. Highlighting other members of the LGBTQ+ community became another recurring theme in his videos.

Skipping forward to last year and Troye Sivan returned home to Australia to spend lockdown time with his family. The restrictions meant that he had to direct the video for his single ‘Easy’, a song that was likely inspired by his break-up with American model, Jacob Taylor Bixenman.

In the video, he sports a David Bowie look at one point flanked by Melbourne drag group The Beastie Girls. (Coincidentally the video of the remix, featuring country singer-songwriter Kacey Musgraves and producer Mark Ronson, also includes a drag artist. In that case, the Nashville drag artist Jorgeous).

And who can ever forget the now iconic ‘Bloom’ and the meaning behind it. Here’s to seeing what Troye Sivan has in store next for music lovers.

You can check out more of David Ferguson’s pop culture musings here.

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