Wayne Brady’s residence sits deep in a Malibu canyon, along switchback roads and overlooking a stream. It’s a fortress of isolation, with a view of the Pacific, a stream, and not much more but massive gates. “It’s a great place to think,” adds Brady, 51.
And he’s been doing a lot of it. Brady recognised for his superb comedic timing and his fully loaded grin, is ready to inform the world: “I am pansexual,” he explains, referring to his attraction to people regardless of gender or sex.
Brady puts it another way: “Bisexual — with an open mind!” he laughs.
Maile, the Let’s Make a Deal host’s daughter, and ex-wife Mandie Taketa, 47, attend. Brady revealed himself to Taketa first. “I simply said, ‘Great.'” “I knew coming out would make him happier,” she adds.
Brady was met with a shrug from Maile. “I just said, ‘Okay,'” she recalls with a broad, happy grin.
A camera crew was also placed at the residence. Brady, Maile, and Taketa are shooting a reality series about their mixed family with Taketa’s boyfriend, Jason Fordham, which will broadcast on Hulu next year. Brady is considered a co-parent to Taketa and Fordham’s new kid, born in 2021.
A lot is happening, but Brady sits in a quiet area of the house. He takes a big breath and relaxes back in his chair.
In conducting my study, both with myself and the rest of the world, I couldn’t tell whether I was bisexual since I needed to see what it was, mainly because I hadn’t received a chance to act on anything.
So I came to pansexual because — and I know I’m misinterpreting the dictionary definition — pan implies being attracted to anybody who identifies as gay, straight, bisexual, transgender, or non-binary—beingthe ability to draw people from all walks of life. And I believe that is the appropriate location for me right now.
I interpreted pan to imply that I may be physically attracted to any of these persons or sorts and the present person.
As with each blessing, I think, “How cool.” It’s lovely that people enjoy me, mainly when I’m doing a program like Let’s Make a Deal or when other corporations or networks say, “I want Wayne Brady to host this,” what a gift! It is a gift to visit people’s homes daily and engage with them. That part is fantastic. But there are days when I wouldn’t say I like it.
Because I am, in fact, an actress. I want to be something other than a personality-driven leader.
There’s a reason I live in a canyon in Malibu rather than in the heart of Hollywood. I’m a shy person. Shy. I’ve always been that way. Growing up in Orlando, I had a pretty thick stutter at one time throughout my youth, which was caused by anxiety, bullying, and stress. I could only communicate well once I began acting, singing, and performing.
As an individual, in the Disney Christmas parade, I played Tigger, Goofy, and Toy Soldier. That was great because you could see the labour. You may not notice me.
I like delivering delight, which is why I enjoy playing characters: if I can do it as a character, then the surface is Wayne Brady. I’m now through much treatment. I wish I didn’t care what other people thought of me, but the truth is that I do. Going from a roaring crowd to sitting in a home by oneself is an odd juxtaposition.
I completed all of the available therapies. I received treatment for love addiction. It’s a necessary element of my journey. I had to start questioning why I was seeking myself and happiness in so many other individuals.
Everything will be all right if I marry this guy. Everything will be all right if I date this individual. I’ll be OK. I’ll be okay. That is a concern. As a result of that work, I now know that love addiction results from trauma. I don’t feel any guilt about it more than I would if someone stated they were hooked to drugs or cocaine. That is a disease.
What do I want in these individuals I cannot find in myself? And then leaving a trail of people behind, never satisfied, and returning to loneliness. Fast forward to recently asking myself, “Wayne, um, are you gay?”
And the answer was no because, despite having been in all of these failed relationships and now suffering from what I now know can be labelled as love addiction, I began to think, “Okay, I’m feeling something, but I just don’t know how to get there.” Then I felt like a phoney.
Let’s be honest: I’ve always been attracted to specific guys in my life, but I’ve always ignored it because of how I was raised and because I live in today’s society, which is terrifying as s–t.
What is the quickest technique to harm another man? I’m going to call you out by name. I’m going to refer to you as homosexual. I’m about to emasculate you. I’m going to say the F-word.
I learnt this early on from folks around me, who said, “Oh, so those are bad things?” Yeah. You don’t want to be that.”
So, what does it imply if I get a feeling? I don’t believe I’m homosexual, but what if I have feelings for another [guy]… That remains homosexual. I’d previously been tormented over a slew of other nonsense. I didn’t want to add a top hat to the outfit.
A shame cake, eating it every day — and then being concerned about… people discovering out. I’ve always had a beautiful group of LGBTQ+ friends, including folks I’ve grown up with in shows, homosexuals and lesbians, and, later in life, my trans relatives and niece.
I’ve always had that community but felt like a fraud because I wasn’t honest with myself. I could speak out about Black concerns because I can’t conceal my identity. And you may pretend to be an ally until the day comes when you can honestly say, “This is who I am, and I want to stand next to you.” That day has always been a dream of mine.
Nobody has to know my business; I’ve persuaded myself in the past. The world can carry on without knowing Wayne identifies as pan. But it permitted me to continue living in the shadows and being clandestine. What does it feel like not to be ashamed or think, “Oh, I can’t be a part of this conversation because I’m lying?” That was something I had to change.
I’m not sure about most of them. I’m still putting it all together. But if I stay healthy, I’ll be able to walk onstage at Let’s Make A Deal and be the Wayne Brady that everyone wants and expects. I can be the finest father Maile could ask for.
Because I’m doing this for myself, I can be Mandie’s best friend, my mother’s greatest son, and one day, the best spouse to someone. But we’re not dating yet! [Laughs] I’m single but not looking for a relationship right now.
I still have some work to do. Wayne, as a single, open-minded pansexual, may then make a choice and be free and open to others.