Firstly my love and thoughts go out to all of the people in France and worldwide who are dealing with any loss and or injuries from the Paris bombings…. We are all thinking of you as we stand united.
I’m sitting in the dressing room getting ready to do one of our last shows at the Sydney Opera House, we close on Sunday night and it’s been a blast doing VELVET here in one of the most iconic “houses” in the world. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all of the people who have come along to boogie down with us during the season. It seems like such a short time ago that we all first met up to put VELVET together! For those of you who missed it this year we will be touring it again in 2016 – stayed tuned as we will soon be announcing where to next!
Many of the cast are from Sydney and the other members are from the US, Scotland, Germany and England. I’m going to miss you guys and I’m sure that your families will be happy to spend the holiday season with all of you who have been missed.
It will be strange when the season wraps, but there won’t be any time to rest as I’m heading down to Melbourne next weekend to play a few gigs at Waterfront Port Melbourne and at Trak.
The thing that I’ve missed over the past few months whilst touring, is cooking up a storm and sharing it with y’all, hopefully I’ll be sharing some new recipes with you soon. Also I miss going out to the flower markets first thing in the mornings to say hi to all of the kind people I’ve met. I’m looking forward to doing some serious walking and a bit of training, not to mention catching up with some friends during my summer break.
Speaking of the holidays, can you believe that it’s just under five weeks before Christmas! I’ve not done any Christmas shopping as yet! I’ll put up my fairy lights at the end of the month as well as the wreath for my door. I so love Christmas. Whatever you are doing I hope that you are beginning to get into the spirit of the holidays. It’s kinda hard not to be if you’ve got kids around, they tend to continually remind you daily, too cute.
Musically, I’ve not had much time to listen to anything new but I did hear a couple of tracks from the Tina Arena CD, you go girl, you’ve always been one of my favourites! I hear that Nathaniel’s newest CD is slamming, so if you get a chance do check him out and let me know your thoughts.
My cousin Deeka passed away early this week and she shall be missed by us all. RIP. Life is such a gift, love lots, laugh lots. Give and get as many hugs as humanly possible. Eat and share something delicious with a friend, I’m thinking chocolate perhaps…. Ok that’s me for now, much love… Peace
Blog Post: Hello All!
Yes, it’s been a while but do know that I’ve missed y’all. How is everyone? I hope that this new week has treated you well so far… We have been having a ball playing at the Brisbane Festival in the Powerhouse. Can’t believe we are almost at the end of the two week season. Y’all need to know we are so pleased with the response here in Brisbane, thanks to everyone who has come along! Some of the cast from Club Swizzle and Strictly Ballroom came to see our show the other day – it’s always good to have showbiz peeps in the house – they whooped and hollered just the way we like it.
Brendan and I had great day on Monday flying back to Sydney to do lots of media. We got to do an interview with the gorgeous Deborah Hutton on Foxtel, then we went to the ABC to film for RAGE. If you feel like a bit of breakfast disco on Saturday, tune into RAGE at about 8.30am for our disco themed episode!
I’ve been listening to my trusty iPod and loving some old school gospel music, Alvin Slaughter is a huge voice and I also adore a gospel singer called BeBe Winans, he’s such a soulful singer he does a slammin’ version of ‘Oh Happy Day’. That song was first done back in the day by the Edwin Hawkins Singers.
So it’s a big football weekend coming up – I’d like to take this opportunity to wish both teams all the very best, you both so deserve your places this weekend!
I’m about to start sending my mailing list these blog entries each week, which I hope they’ll be interested in reading. If you’d like me to send you my blog each week too, please click here to sign up.
OK that’s me for now. Have a great weekend, give lots and get as many hugs as you can. Love lots and smile at a stranger just because….you’ll make their day. Eat well and eat something delicious, and keep some chocolate close at hand.
I can’t wait to do our Opera House season I’m going to be expecting y’all to come along and party with us, and a big shout out the good people of Brisbane – come and be with us for our last weekend at the Powerhouse Theatre.
Much love… Peace.
Blog Post: Hello All,
I hope that all is well in your world and with those you love and hold close.
It’s just wonderful to be back home! The flight back seemed to take forever, probably because I was so looking forward to returning! Edinburgh was such a cool city and doing the show there was fab. We all worked hard and the people there truly enjoyed VELVET.
On the way over I travelled with Joey Accaria, his wife Miss Leah and our director Craig. That, I must tell y’all, was a hoot. We slept, ate and laughed all the way. Coming home I travelled alone and it was kinda lonely without the guys, but I made it. When I walked into my place at 7.30am I breathed a huge sigh of relief, honestly there is no place like home.
This week I’ve been doing tons of publicity for VELVET, I’ve been working hard since I’ve been back, and there are a few other things to get done before next week when I’m off to Brisbane for our two-week season at the Brisbane Festival. And then we open in Sydney! We are all so excited about it and I’m hoping to see many of you at the show. Wear your disco gear and be ready to have a great night.
Musically I’ve been listening to Daft Punk. Gotta love Nile Rodgers, the father of the group Chic, and all his funky funky ideas. And also a bit of my lifetime crush, James Taylor. His Greatest Hits is just so soothing and I do and always will love that man’s voice.
OK, that’s me for now. Take good care of one another and know that you’ve been missed. Have a wonderful weekend and I hear it’s going to be warm. I’ll be down at The Rocks with Cameron Daddo for the Smooth Festival Of Chocolate (surprise surprise!). Come on down and say hi.
Eat lots love lots and give and get as many hugs as possible.
Much love. Peace.
Blog Post: Hello All,
Firstly, I hope that this message finds you and yours well and happy. I have been listening to the radio in Sydney through streaming and it seems that you guys have been having some very different weather at home. Very warm days and now I believe that it’s raining like crazy! My Melbournian friend Paul sent me an email saying that they too were having some unseasonably warm days there! Ciel’s dad sent me a photo of the jasmine in his garden just about to open, so it sounds to me like spring has come a’knocking. I’m looking forward to some warm sunny days upon my return home.
We are now in our last week here in Edinburgh with VELVET and it’s been just great. The people here are so open, kind and warm. The audiences have been enjoying the show and that makes us all so proud. We come to work with a smile and leave the Spiegeltent each night after the show’s finished with even bigger smiles.
My roommates Stephen and Sophie have been a dream to live with. We sleep in, catch up for meals and have some great laughs watching a few things here and there on YouTube. They are such a sweet couple, I’ve truly lucked out having them as my roommates! Y’all don’t know this but I have always had a secret crush on David Caruso the guy that plays Horatio on NCIS Miami. Anyhow, I find out Sophie does too. We discovered our shared crush on him on her first night here, Stephen just rolled his eyes at us and walked away laughing. During the week she and Stephen had a thank you card printed up with for me with a huge photo of Horatio on the front of the card in all his glory wearing those famous sun glasses! I opened the card and couldn’t stop laughing. It now has pride of place next to my bedside table here and I’m thinking I’ll have it framed once I get home. Too funny!
Musically I’ve been listening to Mariah Carey a lot – ‘The Emancipation of Mimi’. It’s one of the first CDs of hers that I ever bought. I like her voice a lot – such an amazing instrument and she was so sad when she recorded that album. I hope that she’s found happiness now – we all deserve that! As I’ve said, my trusty iPod is where I’m getting my music these days and good old Usher is rocking my world with his album ‘My Confessions’. Boy can that child dance, such a natural and there ain’t nothing like a man who can dance. Can I hear an amen ladies???
OK, that’s me for now. Take good care of one another and give and get lots of hugs and love like there’s no tomorrow!
Who said chocolate?
I miss you all. Much love and peace.
Blog Post: Hello All
Can you believe this Autumn weather we are having? The days are just so perfect. I began training down at Icebergs gym this week! My, I kinda forgot about how much muscles can hurt, but as they say no pain no gain! My trainer, Andre, is da bomb and makes an amazing view for when you’re hurting! I got out of bed the morning after and it was hard to stand up, but I’ve been eating well and sleeping better than ever.
Got a nice walk in with an old friend and we spoiled ourselves with a lovely healthy luncheon afterwards. I’ve been playing a bit of piano of late and it’s nice to sit down at the keyboard and try and figure it all out. I’ve cooked some healthy food as well and I’m still lovin’ my vegie soups – hearty and healthy.
Planning on having a very social weekend – dinner on Saturday, lunch with my friend Megs who’s going away for a while filming, and a birthday party on Sunday.
Music wise I’ve gone old school and I’ve been listening to Mary J Blidge. She’s such a soulful singer. I love the song ‘No More Drama’… Girlfriend has got much to say. New music has been kinda old school too – a guy by the name of Luke James. He’s smooth with a twist of funky.
A friend sent me some Tyler Perry DVDs that I can’t wait to watch. Tyler Perry’s character is a grandma called Madea. If you get a chance check him out. He’s one of the big movie producers in the States. I’d like to wish all of the mothers and carers of children a very happy Mother’s Day. There’s no need to really say that because every day is Mother’s Day.
Have a wonderful weekend spoil somebody and let somebody spoil you. Eat lots laugh lots and love lots. OK that’s me for now. Much love. Peace.
Blog Post: Hello All
Firstly, my heartfelt sorrow goes out to all those who lost their lives, and loved ones in Nepal, as well as the parents and families of the young men whose lost their lives this week in Indonesia, may your sons rest in peace.
What a week it’s been here in Sydney. The rain went and then came back and it seems to be knocking once again, so I hope that you’ve all got something dry and enjoyable planned for the weekend.
I had the pleasure of working at 301 this week which is a studio that is one of the very best recording facilities here in Sydney. John Foreman and all the team and I went in to record the song that’s been written for Music: Count Us In which is called ‘Gold’. It was a joy to work with a group of seven young talented singers who made that song truly come to life. John is always so full of great ideas and he’s got a pair of the best ears in the business. One of our best guitarists, Rex Goh, also came along and mentored a young and up and coming guitarist towards his contribution for the track. I worked with Rex’s daughter, Emma, in VELVET and she is so much like her dad it’s incredible. Calm, talented and relaxed, topped off with a great sense of humour! We all worked hard to get the song sounding good and I can’t wait to get it out there to all of the schools that are going to participate in MCUI later this year.
I also worked on a project that is being put together for worldwide distribution that’s being piloted by Russell Crowe’s company ‘South Sydney Media’. It’s a great insight into women in the music business. It’s called ‘Like A Banshee’… that’s all I’m saying for now.
Musically I’ve been listening to Prince. He’s an artist that continually inspires and continually surprises. I’d so love to work with such a prolific and forward thinking musician. Billy Porter has an interesting album out called ‘On the Corner of Broadway and Soul’. A fine, fine singer and his rendition of ‘I am Telling you I ain’t Going Nowhere’ is awe inspiring.
I think my weekend will be spent cooking up a storm and enjoying eating some yummy foods. One of my dear friends is off to Hong Kong next week for work so I’ll go and hang with her over the weekend and share a laugh or two. OK that’s me for now. Have a wonderful weekend, share your love and laughter with those close to you. Eat lots of warm comfort foods. Question: Does that include chocolate? (smile).
Much love… Peace.
How’s the week been treating you? It’s been mighty warm so I’ve been spending a bit of time appreciating the ocean breeze by the sea shore – there’s nothing like it. I’ve also enjoyed a couple of long walks in Centennial Park, somehow I never tire of that place. Back in the day I used to do some serious rollerblading there before enjoying a well-earned breakfast!
This week I’ve been doing a bit of publicity for ‘Velvet’. It’s been good fun talking to the journalists and hearing the enthusiasm of the anticipation for the World Premiere at the Adelaide Festival next month. It’s great to be working on something so new – and from the ground up. Our wonderful international ensemble cast brings all different flavours and we begin our rehearsals next Monday coming and I can’t wait!
The theme of ‘Velvet’ is discothèque and I’ve been listening to music from the era to get me in the groove. Apart from that, I’m really digging the newest song ‘Uptown Funk by Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars – he’s the bomb – and as cute as a button! There’s nothing like a dude that can dance, it’s great to see a performer who always takes it to the MAX! I’ll be totally watching his video for ‘Uptown Funk’ over and over to learn some of those mighty dance moves of his. Too cool!
Here’s to a wonderful and safe weekend shared by all, give lots of hugs and eat lots, laugh lots and spend some quality time with someone you love.
Much love – peace.
Blog Post: Well hi there, how’s everyone?
Here we are in a New Year as we get back into the swing of the holiday season being over for yet another year. I hope you all had a great Christmas with your loved ones. Was Santa good to you? I love putting up my Christmas decorations – it’s the taking them down that I dislike – just like most of you I’m sure. Proud to say – I’ve put away everything very neatly for next year!
I hope that your New Year has begun with great zeal and happiness. If you’ve made any New Year’s resolutions good luck with them – personally I try not to go there – but if you do, good luck with it and I’d so love to hear what they are. So if you feel like sharing please do!!
I had a ball bringing in the New Year performing with Weather Permitting at Wests Leagues Club on NYE. Champagne was shared backstage, we all toasted one another and talked about the year that was. It was wonderful to meet the VIP guests before the show. We were also able to watch the fireworks from Sydney – what a cool evening! By the time I drove back to Sydney and reflected on the evening it was about 5:30 am, so I climbed in bed and slept most of the first day of 2015 away. And boy did I need it! There was a party that I’d been invited to but there was no way I could have even budged from the comfort of my bed. Ah the sweetness of sleep!
With the launch of Velvet just over one month away, I’ve begun studying for the show, so consequently I’m not listening to much new music. Although I am really liking a guy called Eric Roberson. His album is called ‘The Box’, very smooth and kinda old school. I do hope that all of you who live in Adelaide will come and check out the premier of Velvet at the Adelaide Fringe Festival – more information here: http://www.velvettheshow.com/
That’s me for now y’all! Here’s to a wonderful year ahead filled with good health, good fun, good food, good love and good friends. Much love. Peace.
Blog: Hello all. Can you feel it? Where ever I go everyone seems so busy, happy and far more patient than usual. I think it’s called holiday cheer. Children are doing all they can to try and behave because Santa is on his way. The excitement in their little eyes is beyond cute. I put up my Christmas lights the other day and they look great. I waited till it was dark then sent a video of them to my goddaughter and she was thrilled to see them, in return she sent me the most beautiful video message thanking me for the lights!!!
We have begun working on pre-production for ‘VELVET’ It’s extremely exciting and things are falling nicely into place, I’m really looking forward to doing an ensemble piece – it’s been a while since I’ve done any theatre and honestly I’ve missed it. So the year ahead is going to allow me to exercise that passion. Exciting times ahead although slightly daunting!
Last week ‘Weather Permitting’ and I did a great gig out at Rooty Hill, the audience was ready to have a good night out and the show went very well. We all had friends and family in attendance so that’s always a hoot knowing that some of your peeps are there. We got home late and on the drive back we saw lots of homes that were decorated with tonnes of Christmas lights. Love that. I mean if it still gives me a thrill imagine how magical it must all be for the kids!
The show is pretty full on so Sunday was a rest day, I’d gone up to the fountain markets and bought lots of goodies on Saturday, marinated some salmon, got lots of fresh veggies and fruit so I was totally prepared for my Sunday dinner which I shared with a couple of friends that were popping by. It was a nice restful kind of day! The wet weather allows you to stay home and appreciate your surroundings.
I went out to a very nice Christmas dinner party this week with some people that I’ve known for years we ate and laughed and ate and laughed some more. It wasn’t a late night but I have to say that it was a loving and memorable evening shared by all.
My girlfriend got a new puppy last weekend and she’s called her Kloud. She’s an energetic and beautiful looking white ball of fluff! It’s quite wonderful how much love and happiness a new puppy can bring to a home. They will all be very happy together! I went out to a huge rose farm in Dural with Nicholas this week so my home is filled with the scent and the beauty of an assortment of roses. I was going out to the Homebush markets every 2 weeks, then Nicholas suggested that we go out to Dural. He’d been going out there for ages and he finally dragged me out there. I’m so pleased that I did. Before I forget I’d like to wish all of the kind people that I met during my morning visits to the flower markets out there at Homebush a very merry Christmas and may 2015 be good to you all! I look forward to seeing you all again in the new year.
I’ve had to do a bit of studying for ‘VELVET’ so I’m listening to lots of old school music. One of my favourites is the song by Earth Wind & Fire called Boogie Wonderland and it’s funny how you think that you know a tune until you begin to learn it and check out what the lyrics really are! New music that I’ve been checking out is by Jarred Lawson – new guy who has such a warm and soulful voice. Can’t take it off of my sound system. By now you guys should be used to me saying that! 🙂 Wow what a talented guy. Check him out if you get the chance and put some good music on and have yourself a boogie! Trust me you’ll enjoy it.
I hope that your Christmas shopping is getting done and that you are enjoying the parties and the fun that we are all enjoying to the lead up to Christmas and New Years. Take good care of yourselves, eat well, laugh lots give and get as many hugs as possible and take good care of one another.
Much love to you all,
Blog Post: Hello All
What a wonderful time of year, summer is here! We’ve been asking when will it arrive and with the temperatures soaring, we all have to admit she’s here! The nights are so muggy – so I’m happy to have my air-conditioner on so that I don’t sweat through the “war paint” alias my makeup.
It’s been perfect weather for fresh salads and fish. It’s that time of year when mangos are back in season, I feel like I’ve died and gone to heaven! I’m not mad on ice cream so I usually have my mango with yogurt and blueberries! Strawberries are starting to become a favourite as well.
Party season is upon us. Steve Carfino is one of the many Americans that has played a large part in introducing basketball to Australia, we don’t see one another very much but when we do catch up we chat and share a good laugh. One of the many conversations that we had the other night at the “Ivy” party was about his son who is planning on playing basketball next year in the States. And as you’d imagine, Steve could not be more proud. For those of you who follow the game here you’ll know who he is. The reason we were all celebrating at the “Ivy” was because an old family friend by the name of Dorry was throwing the “do” for his associates and I was lucky enough to be invited, it was a nice evening with a good group of people to share some Christmas cheer!
I’ve got Christmas carols playing in my car and around the house. Geesh they always make me feel like a kid. One of my all-time favs is The Temptations singing their beautiful version of “Silent Night”, so soulful and wow so high!! It’s not a Christmas carol, but I’m also loving Usher’s “I Don’t Mind”.
I have not done much Christmas shopping, just a bit here and there, so I’d better get my stuff together because before I know it, boom, it’s gonna be Christmas Day. And honestly I can’t wait!
Tomorrow night the band and I are playing at Rooty Hill RSL and I hope to see a few of you there. That’s me for now. Have a nice weekend, spend some time with someone you love. Hugs lots, laugh lots and stay cool in every way. Much love. Peace