If you’re a skating fan – you will undoubtedly know Eric Radford, who, along with partner Meagan Duhamel, holds three national pair titles, two world bronze medals, a Four Continents title and a Grand Prix Final title.

There is depth to Eric’s creativity that extends way past the boards. Among many other things, he is a composer who created music for one of his Olympic programs a year ago. The selection is called Tribute and is dedicated to the memory of coach Paul Wirtz who died of cancer at age 47. Eric connected with the Canadian Cancer Society and is continuing to donate some of the proceeds of the sale of his original composition to benefit cancer.

Pj wanted to talk to Eric about his creative process, his life as a skater and about recently coming out on Outsports.com. As Eric said to me, he would like to be known as Eric. Just Eric. That being gay isn’t really anyone’s business but being able to encourage people with his story who are struggling with something is important. His decision to come out was inspired by the Canadian Olympic Committee’s announcement of their #OneTeam Athlete Ambassador initiative to promote inclusion of athletes within the LGBTQ community.

This conversation took place in a quiet corner backstage when Pj and Eric were both in the same show in Peterborough. With a laugh, Pj says that they didn’t have quite enough time to get it done before sound check. The joys of live events!

Pj’s conversation with Eric runs the gamut from childhood to music to skating to coming out. Eric’s candour, ability to understand the ‘big picture’,  vulnerability and sensitivity make him a compelling subject.

If you want more information about Eric Radford, he can be found on Twitter @RAD85E and the team’s Facebook page.