Q&A: Nyle DiMarco
Chippendales The Show at Rio recently welcomed guest host Nyle DiMarco for an extended run. The handsome, chiseled looker stole hearts when he won America’s Next Top Model Cycle 22 and the 22nd season of Dancing With the Stars. DiMarco is deaf and he’s using his celebrity to lead the charge as a deaf activist. But he’s letting his body do the talking when he joins the male revue through Oct. 16. Ahead of his hosting duties, he chatted with (through his translator) Las Vegas Magazine’s Kiko Miyasato.
Fame—it came on quickly. How did you handle it? And how do you stay grounded?
Well, you’re right, it was definitely sudden. And, you know, just in this last year, so much has happened—just basically living a normal life to being a celebrity has been kind of crazy. The very beginning, I wasn’t used to it. It was very difficult and there was a lot of demand and sometimes it was just draining. And I think now I’ve learned how to manage it. And how I stay grounded? That’s a good question. I think that has a lot to do with my childhood—how I was raised. I’m fortunate to have this platform that I have now and to use it for a cause. Through the Nyle DiMarco Foundation, that foundation helps me stay grounded. It’s a good mixture of wanting to succeed because I want to help change deaf peoples’ lives.
Have you found, since the fame, that it’s easier to get the word out about your foundation?
Definitely, for sure. When I first launched my foundation, just in one day we had over 40,000 likes on Facebook. That means a lot of people out there are in need or need help, and it made me realize that if I didn’t have any fame, it wouldn’t have had that much of an impact. So through all of this, it can help change lives in a faster, maybe in a shorter way.
Are you comfortable leading this type of movement?
I’m very comfortable with it. I think the deaf community is very supportive of me and they love what I’m doing.
Let’s talk Chippendales. What was your reaction when you first got the call?
My first reaction when they contacted me was an honor. This is an internationally well-known show, and to host the show—I view this as a Broadway production. It’s a huge honor. And, to host a live show in Las Vegas—I think I’m going to be breaking barriers taking this opportunity.
Having that sex appeal, being sexy—do you think that’s innate in you?
I’m aware of that possible sexiness. I work hard on my body. I’m confident. And I’ll bring that confidence to the show.
What about the ladies? Have you seen how crazy they get?
(Laughs). No I haven’t seen yet how crazy they get. It’s a good thing that I’m deaf because I won’t have to hear them yelling. And, I think that’ll help me focus on hosting, right? (Laughs).
What are three things that you look for in a partner?
First and foremost, they have to be able to communicate, then be independent and adventurous.
Tell me about your Instagram ASL videos.
Yes, I’ll be teaching ASL twice a month on Wednesdays. I want to make American sign language more mainstream. And l also want to connect to my audience. I think in this generation you need to connect with your audience. They love me teaching sign language, and that brings on the rapport. So I’m going to continue to do it.
Do you think that learning ASL is just like learning another verbal language?
I would assume so. It’s pretty much the same as learning any other language. As long as you invest the time and energy.
What do you want to say to your fans and Las Vegas visitors as guest host of Chippendales?
If you want to see how a deaf guy hosts a live show, especially Chippendales, come to the show and watch me!
Rio, 8:30 p.m. Sun.-Wed., 8:30 & 10:30 p.m. Thurs.-Sat., $50.41-$73.42 plus tax and fee, 18+. 702.777.7776