The Weeknd Reverts Back to Birth Name on Socials

Written by John Mendelsohn

Videos by American Songwriter

The Weeknd is The Weeknd no more. The four-time Grammy winner has now changed his Instagram moniker from The Weeknd to his birth name, Abel Makkonen Tesfaye. This comes shortly after he revealed that he would be using his real name professionally instead of his stage name in an interview with W Magazine.

While speaking with W Magazine, The Weeknd said, “I’m going through a cathartic path right now. It’s getting to a place and a time where I’m getting ready to close the Weeknd chapter. I’ll still make music, maybe as Abel, maybe as The Weeknd. But I still want to kill The Weeknd. And I will. Eventually. I’m definitely trying to shed that skin and be reborn.”

While the popular artist is preparing to end his career as The Weeknd and start anew, he did mention that he will release one more album as The Weeknd. Tesfaye added, “The album I’m working on now is probably my last hurrah as The Weeknd. This is something that I have to do. As The Weeknd, I’ve said everything I can say.”

[RELATED: Is The Weeknd Almost Over? Singer Looks to End This Chapter of His Career]

Tesfaye is starring in the upcoming HBO series, The Idol, in which he also serves as a co-creator. The show will be available to stream on Max beginning June 4 and will follow Jocelyn (Lily Rose-Depp), a young pop idol who begins a relationship with a cult leader named Tedros (Tesfaye). Euphoria creator Sam Levinson is also a co-creator and director of The Idol.

Later on in the interview, Tesfaye discussed how his role in The Idol has impacted him, saying “I had to take off The Weeknd outfit, put on Tedros’ wig, shoot with [Depp’s character] Jocelyn, then go back to being The Weeknd. Then, after the concert, I lost my voice. No voice came out at all. That’s never happened before.”

Tesfaye continued, “My theory is that I forgot how to sing because I was playing Tedros, a character who doesn’t know how to sing. I may be looking too deeply into this, but it was terrifying. As The Weeknd, I’ve never skipped a concert. I’ve performed with the flu. I’ll die on that stage. But there was something very complicated going on with my mind at that moment.”

Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images

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