I was born and reside in Sydney, Australia. My father was administrator of the Australian Ballet Company, and later of J. C. Williamson’s, the company that for many years produced Broadway shows in Australia.
I majored in music at Sydney University and, after a brief stint as PA/copyist for the composer Peter Sculthorpe, went on to become the first program manager at 2MBS FM, Australia’s inaugural classical FM radio station.
I then got drawn into the theatre, where I have mainly worked ever since, as a writer, actor, singer, pianist, composer, and musical director. I have written feature-film scores, appeared in several television series, had four novels published, and two musicals produced. I know that sounds like a lot, but we’re talking 25 years!
For the last decade I have been cowriter, composer, and a performer in the Wharf Revue, a long-running series of political/social satire shows for the Sydney Theatre Company (13 so far), during which time I have been threatened with a libel suit only once. I have performed solo cabaret shows at various festivals, including Edinburgh, consisting of original material plus standards, Lehrer, Sondheim, etc. If you number perseverance among your virtues, you may be able to track down the CD of one such effort of mine, “Serious Cabaret” (mercifully unreviewed in Fanfare).
Last year I was script consultant on the acclaimed production of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, the Musical, and made my Shakespearean debut as Gonzalo in The Tempest. I write a weekly column for the Sydney free paper SX.
My most cherished gig involved playing the slow movement of Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 21 in a fundraiser with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, which I did beautifully, even though there was a comedy routine going on behind my back. We also programmed Kabalevsky’s Comedians Suite and Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf, the latter reworked as Peter and the Endangered Species.
A lifelong classical record and CD collector, I have subscribed to Fanfare since 1988. I consider it a privilege to have become a regular contributor.