For the first time in its 16-year history, Denmark’s version of Dancing With the Stars — called Vild med Dans — features a same-sex dancing couple, and they’re dominating the competition. Gay actor and comedian Jakob Fauerby teamed up with dancer Silas Holst to show that two men are even better than one.
According to the queer news site LGBTQ Nation, the pair has been extremely successful, scoring the highest in four of the eight episodes so far this season. They’re considered the odds-on favorites to win the whole competition.
In an interview with Danish site BT, Fauerby said that he feels honored to be a part of the history-making pairing.
“I’m proud if I can help a young man or woman out there who feels recognized,” he said, celebrating how far Danish media has come in the last few decades. “[...] If you heard about [LGBTQ+] people in the media back then, it was often because they were dead.”
Fauerby, who has also appeared in Danish TV series like Rita and Hjørdis, said he’s proud to further push society forward by starring in one of the European country’s biggest shows, and the show’s Entertainment Director Thomas Richardt Strobech hopes that audiences at home take the message of inclusion to heart.
“They are a lovely couple,” he told BT. “We want to help show that couples are available in all sorts of versions.”
Being that it’s a reality competition show, Fauerby and Holst are not actually an item. In real life, Fauerby is married to his husband, Anders, who he talks about regularly on Vild med Dans. His partner even appeared on the show just hours after the two welcomed a daughter to their family.
“I missed the rehearsal, arrived an hour before the show started, did a quick press conference, then got into makeup and danced the show,” he told LGBTQ Nation. “We are a rainbow family, and it’s been overwhelming and amazing.”
Fauerby will be continuing to dance with Holst on Vild med Dans this Friday on Denmark’s TV2. We’ll all be rooting for them to take home the crown, but while we await the result, the 42-year-old performer hopes the experience has been just as “amazing” for LGBTQ+ people watching at home.
“We’re just one couple out of 160 in 16 years,” he said. “So for me, if a young boy, boy, girl, or trans person has the opportunity to see that positive representation as part of a TV show, that is empowering in itself.”