Adam Rippon, the first openly gay U.S. athlete to qualify for the Winter Olympics and a figure skating sensation, might want to add potential pop star to his resumé.
This past December, during the gala portion of the 2017-18 Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final in Japan, Rippon sang a cover of Rihanna’s “Diamonds” before unleashing a skating routine set to the Bad Gal’s version — and you can watch it all in the video above.
“My own experience of singing in front of people was like I had none,” he told Deadspin of the performance, which has since gone viral after his success at the Winter Olympics. “But I always like to hear myself in the car, which I know is like that telltale sign of somebody who’s like f—ing awful.”
He also shared that before the performance, he ran his vocals past a producer who said he sounded “fine.” Later, in an interview with the New York Times, the Pennsylvania native gave a humble critique of his singing. “It wasn’t too bad; wasn’t too good, either,” he said.
Rippon’s pop music moments have continued at the Olympics. On Monday, Rippon’s stunning performance to Coldplay’s “O (Fly On)” during the team skating event helped Team USA secure a bronze medal.
The 28-year-old skater is taking advantage of a recent rule change from the International Skating Union, which allows performers to use music with vocals for their performances. Previously, only instrumental tracks had been allowed. See more figure skaters taking the ice to pop songs here.
Watch Rippon’s singing debut and “Diamonds” performance above.