CANADA: Gay Talk Show Host Christopher Hyndman Found Dead In Toronto Alley

CBC News reports:

The body of Christopher Hyndman, co-host of the afternoon talk show Steven & Chris on CBC-TV, was found in an alleyway in Toronto’s east end Monday night, police confirm. “It is with profound sadness that we share the news Christopher Hyndman died,” said the public broadcaster in a memo distributed to staff Tuesday afternoon. “We extend our deepest sympathies to Steven [Sabados], family, friends and colleagues; our thoughts are with them all.” Toronto police told CBC News on Tuesday that Hyndman, 49, was found without vital signs in an alleyway near the intersection of Queen Street and Broadview Avenue shortly after 11 p.m. ET Monday. CBC arts reporter Eli Glasner said the scene was near the apartment where Hyndman lived with Sabados, his off-screen partner and television co-host. Toronto police Det. Terry Wray said the investigation remains “completely open.” He added that police would not comment further until completing interviews.

More from the Toronto Star:

Hyndman was co-host of the show with Steven Sabados, who was also his real-life partner. They were co-stars of the original Designer Guys show in 2001 as well as Design Rivals (2003) and So Chic with Steven and Chris (2005) before launching their afternoon talk show. The pair formed the Sabados Group Inc. in 1992, specializing in event planning, product launches and set design, his CBC biography says. A 2013 profile of Hyndman and Sabados by Xtra, then Toronto’s gay newsmagazine, called them “Canada’s gay-lifestyle TV guru couple” whose show Steven and Chris was “a bona fide hit for CBC” and aired in more than 70 per cent of the market on ABC’s Live Well Network. The couple told Maclean’s magazine the same year that they had met in a bar in 1988 when they both were working at CityTV.

Reruns of Steven & Chris have been pulled off the air. Below is the most recent clip posted to the show’s YouTube channel.

(Tipped by JMG reader Edward)

  • SilasMarner

    OMG! This is horrible. Loved them and their show!

    • non

      It’s still totally sad, tragic, and mysterious that Hyndman died. Condolences to the family, yadda yadda whatever you’re supposed to say.

      At first I thought you were saying the show was horrible, and I agreed. The overwrought gasping and awing of the audience to the salad spinner disgusts me. Disingenuous fake enthusiasm from a studio audience, barf! Followed immediately by promoting leather for fashion. Cecil just died. It’s too soon to go back to casually endorsements of unnecessary killing and abuse of animal for petty human reasons. Barf! The show is clearly not for me.

      But yeah, it’s totally sad one of the hosts suddenly died. He was still so young. =(

      • bambinoitaliano

        I actually prefer the earlier show when Steven started on his own before Chris and him went to City TV.

      • Scott Carpenter

        Disingenuous fake enthusiasm from a studio audience, barf!
        endorsements of unnecessary killing and abuse of animal for petty human reasons

        So you’re not just tiresome about circumcision, you’re also tiresome about pop culture and leather. I suppose it’s good that you’re not single-focus.

        • Jeffrey

          Roundly tiresome. That’s quite an achievement!

        • non

          You’ve convinced me, wearing animals as trophies on your feet is totally different from wearing them on your walls.

          • Scott Carpenter

            Think bigger than shoes. Imagine a belt made from foreskins; when you rub it, you get a duffle bag.

          • Jonty Coppersmith

            LOL!

      • StraightGrandmother

        I was not faking it, when they did the salad spinner idea, my mouth dropped open, what a great idea! It was a totally awesome idea. so you assuming the audience was faking it, I don’t think so. I loved all of their ideas.

        • Regan DuCasse

          When I washed out my nylons today, I could have totally used that spinner!

          I do hand wash some delicates in the sink. Now I have a reason to get a salad spinner, other than for salad.

      • Jeffrey

        You’re just the worst. Honestly, Im not even sure why you are commenting. Is it to make sure everyone knows how much you hate studio audiences? Is it to share your hatred of leather? I assure you that no one here cares what you think about either of those things. Go stand in front of a mirror and give this monologue to someone who cares.

        • non

          I’m commenting because trolling is how I entertain myself. Duhhhh. Why so serious?

  • bambinoitaliano

    OMG! That is tragedy. That intersection is not exactly quiet area. Have quite a few bars that are busy on the weekend. It’s a mix area. Like the rest of the city, quite a few condo development happening. Both Steven and Chris are local celebrities. Steven is like the Nate Berkus of Canada. I have no idea Chris was Steven real life partner. My condolences to him and the families.

    • They kept their relationship secret until 2008. Not sure why. They had great chemistry onscreen — maybe they wanted to keep the mystique. Not that this matters anymore. 49 is far too young.

      • bambinoitaliano

        Back in the early 90’s I use to bump into Steven with a woman at his side at various gay bars or in the village. He always have that friendly smile on his face and very well aware of his surrounding. I often fantasize if I had the money, I would hire him as my interior decorator. 🙂

  • oikos

    I had never heard of them. Very sad and my condolences to his husband. 🙁

    • They were big in Canada but their show(s) were apparently shown in 80 countries.

    • bambinoitaliano

      Unfortunately in Canada, having a tv show is not a big as deal like in the US. The market here is just not that big. I remember Steven had appear on Oprah shows a couple of time when home decoration was a big things than.

  • Octavio

    I hope cause of death is “natural causes” and not assault. 🙁

    • Because it was an alley, people are assuming it’s something violent. But, if it’s where I think it is, we’re not talking about some place dark and seedy. Obviously, violent crime happens in broad daylight but it could easily have been a heart attack.

      • Schlukitz

        “Because it was an alley, people are assuming it’s something violent.”

        Or sleazy…

        • Sk3ptic

          Right…drugs, sex. Hopefully none of the above.

      • ETownCanuck

        There was a news clip showing them discovering him in the alley, it wasn’t a creepy long dark alley you could see all the way to the opposite end and it was brightly lit. His body also appeared to only be just a short distance inside of the alley as well.

        • Sashineb

          Yes, the laneway connects to a parking lot behind the two loft buildings, and the lot goes up to Queen E. It was likely a short-cut for many people. I saw the report about the body having been found, and it was just a few feet from the sidewalk on Broadview. Very close to the street.

      • KT

        To get to my friend’s apartment from the main parking lot, I cut through an alley that is pretty wide and full of walking traffic. It literally ends on the main street of her town. If I dropped dead of a heart attack there, it would be reported that I was found dead in an alley.

      • Gigi

        The alley where he was found is in an area where there are lots of lofts. It’s more of a walkway than an alleyway.

        • Prixator

          I am trying to figure out where this alley is. I live on the other side of the Don and I go for long walks every morning and I have walked along every street and alley in the vicinity at least once in the last 13 years. I think I should check the TorStar article.

          • Gigi

            I live in Riverdale. They said on the news that it was at Broadview and Queen. It looks like it’s south of Queen on Broadview near the lofts.

          • Prixator

            I saw it on the news. It’s not a through lane, so I never walked along it. Still, so sad to die alone in an alley. I’m jealous!

          • Gigi

            Jealous of what?

          • Prixator

            A quick exit.

          • Sashineb

            It’s south of Queen E., on the west side of Broadview, close to Eastern Avenue. There are two red brick loft buildings with a laneway between them. The laneway connects to a big parking lot at the back, which I think is owned by the car dealership in that area. I hadn’t heard the earlier reports of a body having been found, so all I got was the announcement that Chris is dead. News reports showed the laneway, and he was quite close to Broadview Ave. when this happened. Very sad.

          • Prixator

            Thanks. I later saw on the news where this alley was. Because it doesn’t go through, I never walked it.

    • Schlukitz

      Yeah. The reference to an “alley” realy sensationalizes this sad happening in the same manner as cheap tabloid would report it.

    • bambinoitaliano

      Yeah, the alley part does give one the wrong impression. From a congenital heart disease, drug overdoes to mugging. From the report of the police, it seems quite neutral. And he passed close to his home. Regardless, he is gone and hopefully Steven and the rest of the family get to celebrate his life.

      • Octavio

        Not to mock, but I love the idea of a “congenial” heart disease. 🙂
        May my own passing be nurtured by something pleasant. 🙂

        • bambinoitaliano

          Thank! I haz fix! 🙂 Alternatively the headline could have read. Found steps away from home. Even found at path near home.

          • Octavio

            Yeah. I’ve noticed that every black victim killed by a white cop has his mug shot published in the paper rather than any other photo of the person.

          • assuming the black person even had a “mug shot.” but you’re right, if the dead black person has a police photo, it’s always the first thing they show, not the murdering cop.

          • Jeffrey

            yes, the whole CELEBRITY DEAD IN A DITCH angle is kind of gross.

      • Gigi

        The police officer who found the body said that he wouldn’t release the name because there were no signs of foul play. That’s something I guess.

        • bambinoitaliano

          Yeah. I think the police just waiting for the coroner’s report to confirm.

  • Baltimatt

    Sorry, wrong thread.

  • Jordan

    Heart breaking, love these guys, my husband and I would watch them most nights (they were on the LiveWell channel in the US).

    • Rex

      I watched their show on the LiveWell channel as well until the local Cleveland ABC channel dropped LiveWell. Chris was always the comic relief, and I always assumed they were a couple, although they never exploited their relationship. My sympathies to all those who knew him, especially Steven, and I too hope it not due to foul play.

  • Hue-Man

    Here’s the description of today’s episode which is a rerun of Feb 11. It was scheduled for 1:00 PM local time across the country on CBC.

    A recipe for a romantic meal; DIYs for movie night; financial expert Gail Vaz-Oxlade.

    Devastating news.

  • hdtex

    Oh no…..I really really liked him. Their show was always a pleasure to watch. Flamboyant, stylish, and witty….

  • As someone who watches NBC’s Dateline and CBS’ 48hrs-Mystery every week, I did not have the same reaction to this story as previous posters. My first thought was, “Hmmm. There’s something strange here.”

    • Bruno

      Me too, a little. It has something to do with being found on the street outside one’s home. If it were natural causes, that would seem an odd place for it to happen, but anything’s possible.

  • he was a really sweet man. we’d met on several occasions. funny, self-effacing, generous and kind. it’s shocking and sad.

    to any canucks – not that would you, but i made the mistake of reading this story this morning on the Toronto Sun’s website – it broke my heart. nothing but a sea of mouth-breathing bigots mocking his death. avoid that rag.

    RIP, Chris. you were bright and funny and brought a lot of joy to people. you will be missed.

    • Sashineb

      Yes, it was shocking news. Very sad. It’s said he & Steven lived in that area. The map shows the laneway between the two buildings leads to a big parking lot at the back (which I think is related to the car dealership that’s there.) R.I.P., Chris.

  • Canadian Observer

    I am a little pissed off at the language used by both CBC and The Star… they are referring to his spouse/husband as his partner. They were married in 2008 – given that they were also business/infortainment partners, they should have used the correct terminology in describing their relationship. It is pathetic that only the National Post seems to have gotten this right.

  • Ninja0980

    My thoughts go out to his husband.

  • maxracer

    When the Toronto police say they won’t discuss cause of death “for reasons of privacy” it is almost always code for suicide.

  • houstonray

    OH MY GOD, I loved watching those guys. My partner and I would watch it fairly regularly on our local cable channel. Wow. Too sad. thoughts to his husband.

  • fuzzybits

    I know I saw Designer Guys. I want to say it was on HGTV. My sympathies to Steven.

  • NYC GUY

    LivWell in NYC is still showing reruns tonight.

  • SnakeEyes

    I really liked him. It’s too bad, such a positive guy, so charming. I had a crush on him.

  • DumbHairyApe

    So sad. I enjoyed them on HGTV during their Designing Guys show. I only watched their talk show once and I didn’t enjoy it much. My thoughts go out to his husband and their families. So sad.

    His mother is reported to have said that he was a chronic sleep-walker and she thinks he fell off their apartment terrace.
    http://t.thestar.com/#/article/news/gta/2015/08/06/chris-hyndmans-mother-believes-he-died-sleepwalking.html