Super hunk, Matt Evers, has made history in the UK by taking to the “Dancing on Ice” floor with a same sex partner. The 43-year-old ice skating champion splits his time between his birthplace in the US, and the UK. He tells Steven Smith why ‘Us Brit Lads’ might be more his type and who he would like to skate with again.
How does it feel to make UK television history as part of the first same-sex couple to be on Dancing on Ice?
One-word Steven, INCREDIBLE! It was something that was not entered into lightly. Of course, I am out and proud now, but the last thing I wanted was it to turn the show into a circus. However, I thought, “I have to do this” but I did not want it to be something like “Blades of Glory”. I wanted to make a difference. Honestly, I can’t tell you the number of positive letters people have written to me. Only the other day, a young gay man wrote to me thanking me, saying he was about to kill himself when he saw the show and he realised he was not alone and there was hope. There were only 19 complaints to Ofcom. The voices of support have been incredible from all avenues of life.
You are currently patterned with H Watkins from the pop group Steps, but in real life, do you have a partner, and if not, who would your ideal partner be, or what qualities would look for?
No, I am single. At this stage in my life, it would be a preference for me to be with someone who has experience in life. Honestly, I am kind of a geek and love slobbing in pjs and hanging at home, watching box sets, reading and cuddling up. Don’t get me wrong, a party is great, and going out is nice too, but I just would not want someone who wants to go out all the time. It would be great to just be myself around another human being. Type wise, it is hard to say. I don’t have a set type and that’s honest!
You have been on the show since the very beginning, and we have seen you partnered with everyone from Denise Welch to Pamela Anderson. Who are you still in touch with and have you had a favourite partner?
Well you know I love Denise Welch, but we seem to be passing each other in the air these days. When I am in London, she is in LA. But – and this is honest truth, I am friends with all of them still and it was an honour working with such wonderful people. If you asked who I would like to dance with again, given only one choice, it would be Jorgie Porter [from Hollyoaks]. She was a dream skater and we just went well together.
You came out officially in 2018 during an interview with Attitude magazine, but you had previously been married to a woman. When did you actually realise you were gay?
Yes, I have been marred to a woman. It wasn’t until I was working in Los Angles, and among the troop was a handsome country and western singer that I just gelled with. One night, we went for a drive up Mulholland drive to look over LA. It was just gorgeous, and he put his hand on my leg and asked to kiss me. Well it was a long way to walk back so I thought ‘Ok’.
I have always had a feeling though and coming from the tip of the Bible Belt in the US and having a religious upbringing did not help. Really it was time, with Trump getting in and some backlash against the LGBTQ community, that I stood up to be counted and made a difference.
You speak about your uncle being part of the San Francisco Gay scene in the 70s and have mentioned that he sadly passed away of AIDS. How much of an impact did this have on you?
Yes – well Steven, he was one of the original Fire Island crowd (gay destination outside New York) and then moved to San Francisco. He told his Catholic family at 16 and they disowned him. They never got to see what an amazing man he was. I guess the fear of that happening to me was in the back of my mind.
My mum came to stay with me and my then-partner in Los Angeles so we decided to let her find out naturally. She slept in the bedroom and we both slept on the couch. Nothing was said. Driving Mum back to the airport, she leaned over and said, “I know what is going on and I want you to know, I think it’s beautiful, but let me tell your father”. A month later, I emailed my dad and he wrote back saying he loved me and supported me, God be with me.
Would you like to have children?
Honestly, a family is something that I would love to have, but I would want to be able to support them and do my best. When work was quiet a few years back, it would have been the right time, but then the fear of being financially able to look after a family kicked in and I put it on the back burner.
Through your life, you have been an Olympic gold medallist, model, actor and all-around superhero. Do you find people are intimated when it comes to dating or meeting you? How different is your public persona to your private one?
Well I don’t think it’s different. I hope not. Well, at Dancing on Ice, I am at work, so I might be more business-like, as are most people. Obviously I am performing, so people may choose to see what they think I am. My feeling is that people can always come and chat to me, unless it’s a moment where I can’t (such as about to film). Dating wise, really that’s a hard one – let’s hope that guys do not feel that I am not approachable.
So many men would like to look as fit as you. What are your tips on looking good?
Gosh, thank you! I honestly do not see that. If anything, if I am, it is down to good genes. Of course, my skin may have stayed younger as its frozen by skating all the time on the ice! We skaters are kind of permanently in cryotherapy [a treatment that involves the use of freezing or near-freezing temperatures].
Trust me, I am sure that if I was not exercising all the time on the ice, my body would not look like this. My skin care has been the same for 25 years – Clarins for Men.
If you could take a loved one to just one movie, what would it be, and why?
“He’s just not that into you”. No, really honestly, not that. Well, I love a comedy and “Bridesmaids” had me in stitches. If you’re asking me romantically, “Sleepless in Seattle” gets me every time.
What do you think the difference is between British and American men?
Brits tend to have foreskin? LOL, Kidding. Well, I love the British sense of humour. They really embrace irony and you can jokingly say “F off” and it’s taken tongue in cheek. British men I relax around, and there are so many cute ones.
Beach holiday or city break?
Oh, has to be beach, every time.
I love pizza.
Looks or personality?
Favourite TV show?
Ru Paul’s Drag Race on BBC3
Biggest turn off?
Bad Manners, such as forgetting to say please or thank you!