Elton John met his husband David Furnish in 1993 at a dinner party, but before John came out as gay, he was married to a woman named Renate Blaue. The ex-couple were married from 1984 to 1988, according to Hello! Magazine. John and his ex-wife married in a ceremony in Australia, as reported by Pink News. When it came to the wedding, Caroline Boucher, a former in-house PR for Elton John, told The Guardian that John “told a friend that Renate walking down the aisle at St Mark’s church was the most beautiful sight he’d ever seen. He was totally committed to this relationship, which was always going to be tough on Renate – the gossip, the male ex-lovers, moving from a £34-a-week flat in Kilburn into the opulent Woodside.”
People reported that the ex-couple met in 1982, when Blaue was working on John’s “Too Low for Zero” music album. They reportedly got engaged over a dinner of chicken curry and the wedding was a Valentine’s Day ceremony.
Blaue’s marriage to John was short-lived because John came out as gay shortly after the couple called it quits. In 2017, Pink News reported that John admitted, “Many years ago, I chose Australia for my wedding to a wonderful woman for whom I have so much love and admiration. I wanted more than anything to be a good husband, but I denied who I really was, which caused my wife sadness, and caused me huge guilt and regret. To be worthy of someone’s love, you have to be brave enough and clear eyed enough to be honest with yourself and your partner.” When Blaue and John first split, John’s friend Ed Coan told People that it was because of John’s busy work schedule.
So, what happened to Blaue after she and John called it quits? According to The Guardian, she left her home with John and settled into a house in the Home Counties. She then reportedly threw herself into her musical studies. Blaue worked as a sound engineer. Her love of music, according to The Guardian, was what reportedly attracted John to Blaue. A writer with The Guardian wrote that, “The spark with Renate was music – they were both obsessed by it. She was a breath of fresh air; knowledgeable, bright and unthreatening.”
According to People, after Blaue and John split, one of the first people who John broke the news to was in the royal family. It wass Fergie, the Duchess of York, at Prince Charles’s 40th-birthday event.
John came out as gay to the public via Rolling Stone Magazine, after he was asked directly about his sexuality by a journalist. Recalling the moment, years later, John said to Today, “When Cliff Jahr asked me in Rolling Stone, ‘I’m gonna ask you a question, but if you don’t want to answer it, I’m gonna turn the tape recorder off.’ And I said, ‘You’re gonna ask me if I’m gay or not.’ And he said, ‘How did you know that?'” John continued, remembering that, “I said, ‘I’ve been waitin’ for people to ask me this. It’s not exactly a secret. I live with my manager. I’m openly gay outside. I don’t have a girlfriend. And nobody’s ever actually out — I just thought it was common knowledge.'”
After John and Blaue broke up, People reported that they “genuinely intended to remain best of friends.” Over the years, Blaue has not spoken out or given interviews concerning her marriage or divorce to John.