Millions of fans all over the world were stunned today when legendary singer Barry Manilow came out as gay.
Daily Mail reported that Manilow, 73, just gave an interview in which he confirmed that though he stayed in the closet publicly for most of his life, he has secretly been married to his manager Garry Kief for years. He said he kept quiet about his sexuality for decades due to fears of disappointing his fans.
“I thought I would be disappointing them if they knew I was gay. So I never did anything,” Manilow said.
“When they found out that Garry and I were together, they were so happy,” he added. “The reaction was so beautiful – strangers commenting, ‘Great for you!’ I’m just so grateful for it.”
For years, Manilow was rumored to be dating TV production assistant Linda Allen. He was actually living with her when he first began dating Kief, but the two were never actually together romantically.
Manilow finally married Kief in a “clandestine wedding” on his Palm Springs property.
“I didn’t think I was going to be that emotional,” Manilow said of the wedding. “It was deeper than we thought it was going to be saying ‘I love you’ in front of people.”
Manilow was previously married to his high school sweetheart Susan Deixler, but they divorced after a year. However, he said their split had nothing to do with his sexuality.
“I was in love with Susan, I just was not ready for marriage. I was out making music every night, sowing my wild oats – I was too young. I wasn’t ready to settle down,” Manilow said.
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