With the release of his latest EP, In a Dream, Troye Sivan cements his status as one of the brightest young stars working in music today. Released right in the midst of a pandemic, it chronicles the end of a relationship and all its attendant heartache, longing, loss and regret. Throughout his career, the Australian has demonstrated a gift for mining deeply personal experiences and turning them into pure pop gold. This, coupled with his unapologetic embrace and expression of his identity and sexuality, has turned Sivan into a global icon for a new generation.
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I think it’s safe to say that this has been a year like no other. How has quarantine been for you?
Twenty-twenty has been a ride. I’m in Australia and haven’t travelled for a few months—I feel lucky that I had some music already written, but I’ve found it quite hard to write new music this year. I think community is so important—it’s about feeling safe and looked after by the people around you.
I’ve grown up my entire life in very tight-knit communities and am so thankful for that. Also, I’ve really enjoyed cooking in the last few months. It has become a ritual of sorts and has pushed me to develop some new skills I probably wouldn’t have otherwise.
What was it like working on and putting out an EP in times like these? You also stepped behind the lens for the first time to direct the video for “Easy”.
I try to push and better myself all the time. For me, the driving force has always been an insatiable desire to create, no matter the format. That has manifested itself in a few different ways over time, which keeps me really excited about my work. The through line is a love and need to process life through making stuff and the kick I get out of sharing it. I miss people,
I miss performing. The internet is good for now and I’ve had some inspiring collaborations happen online, but I can’t wait to get that real-life face time in again.
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What were some of the challenges you faced writing and putting together In a Dream?
I didn’t go in thinking I was going to write an album. That’s why I don’t have an album. I’ve got an EP because I was just kind of going through a lot and I just wanted to start writing; I didn’t know what I was writing for. I didn’t know this EP would be such a weird little thing in that all these songs sound pretty different from one another. I think the [common denominator] is just that I felt like I needed to write that day—especially with “Easy”.
What are you working on now?
I’ve got a few films in the pipeline that I’m very excited about—some in-front-of-the-camera work and some behind the scenes. I’d really love to write an album this year. Working in design would be great fun for me too; maybe a side passion of some sort!
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From your early YouTube videos to your music, you’ve always been about openness and transparency. Do you find that more daunting and difficult the more public your life becomes?
Do what feels right, trust your instincts, take risks and enjoy yourself. Social media has meant a lot to me over my life; it helped me really find myself as a young teen and has made all my dreams come true. At the same time though, I recognise that it’s something that needs to be treated with caution. It’s very addictive and unhealthy at times, so I closely monitor my usage and often take breaks. I’ve been very lucky to work with great people and companies that have been very supportive. I mostly deal with public pressure by looking inward, and trying to make something that feels genuinely interesting and exciting to me.
Your self-expression comes through not just in your music and videos, but also your style. How would you describe it and what do you want to express with it?
My personal style varies. I think my everyday style is really about trying to find really great classics—great jeans, great boots, a soft vintage tee. When I’m on stage, or on a photo or video shoot, it’s much more about creating a fantasy and playing with a character or narrative.
You’re part of the Pasha de Cartier tribe; what do you love about the watch?
I think there’s a timelessness to the Pasha design that I’d love to strive for in my work. It’s classic but modern, fresh and stands for something.
What are the values of Cartier that resonate with you?
Cartier has always been the ultimate symbol of classic cool to me. I love the brand and team, and to be part of the cast of the Pasha campaign is really such a privilege.