Monthly Archives: October 2012
But today, I caught up. I always brace myself before I ever check these random commenters’ posts, readying for for the punch in the guts that could just be round the corner. But…the ones I uncovered today – and then sheepishly replied to these many months after they were originally posted! – were actually rather lovely.
This one stood out, re: last year’s home tour video: “Keep up the good work of sharing the truth of mummy hood.”
It struck a nerve because here’s the thing: half the time on here, I don’t feel like I do.
I share the good stuff. Some of the crap stuff, but not really the truth of what’s going on day to day. When people used to say to me “I don’t know how you do it!” I would shrug it off, but now if you say that to me in person I’m likely to actually confess the reality, that I’m on the verge of a nervous breakdown when things get beyond insane. But for some reason I’ve loathe to commit these confessions in the written form. So…while I’m freshly motivated but the lovely words of this dear stranger on youtube, I’m gonna share some truth. Dig.
The Truth of Mummyhood: HOW I DO IT ALL.
1. I cut corners. Often. Religiously. The biggest one of these is housework. Which would be fine, except that I actually do happen to enjoy having a clean space. I find it difficult to ignore crap. On Saturday when cleaning under our bed (only because we were having my grandma over, who has an uncanny knack for looking at my post-clean efforts and saying “Wow, you really need to clean up in here!”) I found clothes I hadn’t seen in months, fluff, cups, a lost DVD from the library and a baby bottle teat. We don’t even have a baby. I had a moment and collapsed in defeat on the bed, while the kids gathered round, gave me cuddles and offered to clean the whole house while I slept. I felt like some sort of bogan Cleopatra. I HATE things being out of order, hate it. But…I hate it far less than I hate not getting any creative work done. So…there you go. It is my choice. And I choose a messy house.
2. Sometimes I ignore the kids while I work. I comfort myself with articles that talk about how the french do this and how ignoring them is actually a form of superior parenting. Then I get back to beating myself up about it. Then I inevitably compensate by taking them out for fish and chips on the beach. It’s basically a cycle of PARENTING FAIL, PARENTING WIN, PARENTING FAIL, PARENTING WIN, which goes in direct disproportion to my other cycle of WORK WIN, WORK FAIL, WORK WIN, WORK FAIL. This amazing article I read recently (which could spark off an entire other series of posts on here from all the thoughts and feelings it brought up in me alone), talked about this concept far more eloquently than I can.
3. I sacrifice sleep. It is not unusual to be still working at 2.30 in the morning. I actually really enjoy what I do (I’m lucky, aside from some of the boring admin details I’d rather delegate, I actually do enjoy the marketing, promo and of course, writing work that comes with freelancing as a performer.) The downside? It makes it really hard to pry my butt away from the computer when I should be. And it makes my back hurt. More.
4. I am a super-fast typer. Last time I was measured I was 103wpm. This is not really a confession in itself, but I think it’s important to be honest about how I actually can get a lot done in a small amount of time. I’m not saying that to boast, just to explain how it is possible for me to get through an absolute TON of works (emails, media releases, show blurbs, etc.) pretty quickly: typing fast. I honestly think it’s the best skill I’ve ever mastered. I am buying my kids this computer typing tutor (the very one I learned on) soon.
5. Some nights we have baked beans on toast for dinner. I’m not even sure what the kids eat*.
In summary, much of the time my home time feels like a gong show, but when I really think about what I want from life, I know that above all, I just want it to be full.
And it is.
Chaotically, messy, disorganisedly, crazy, loud, over-the-top, failure-riddled, at times just plain overwhelmingly, on-the-verge-of-a-breakdown FULL.
But, I know that:
a) this is my choice; and
b) I will NEVER do it all.
And today, that is the truth of mummy hood.
The Big Announcement! Or “How to get a cupcake soiree in your kitchen and/or a cabaret/comedy party in your lounge!”
This is it! The project I was banging on about yesterday! It’s all about taking my newest show, called ‘Jenny Wynter’s Wonderland! Featuring Betty and the Betties!’ to the Adelaide Fringe in 2013 and it has officially launched today right here!
I won’t harp on about the details here, as if you click over to the page itself, all will be revealed! It tells you what the show is all about (clue: JAWESOMENESS), how you can be involved (including IN THE SHOW ITSELF), ridiculously cool stuff you can get for supporting it and the rest.
Note: if you do want to help in some way, please, pretty please, the HUGEST thing you can do with this is to share this link: www.pozible.com/wonderland with your peeps. The sooner we get this ball rolling, the better. That is gold, I tells ya!
I think it’s worth even just checking out the video (posted above for your convenience: I stayed up insanely late making it, PUHLEASE watch it so my crankiness towards my family is at least justifiable in some context: “but look guys, at least 3 people watched Mummy devolving into a banshee!”) even if you can’t be bothered reading on.
I will say that jumping onboard this project as a supporter may be of interest if:
- you have ever commented that you’d love to see me perform if I ever come to your town/country/loungeroom. There are DVDs to be had – and yes, we can ship em internationally! I’ll even seal each package with a kiss if you so desire.
- you have ever harboured a desire to host a musical cupcake soiree in your kitchen;
- you would like to see me looking STONED. Not that I was, only that as I said, I began shooting this video (BEGAN!) at 1.30 in the morning – the only way I seem to be getting work done these days – and well, you can see it in my eyes. These are not the eyes of a well-rested lady. On the bright side, the house is uncharacteristically quiet on-screen.
I also want to tell you guys that this campaign to get the new show up and running has been planned for a LONG TIME. As in, long before the charity fundraiser fell into my lap. And as such, I felt so terribly awkward with the timing of that, knowing that this meant months in a row of putting stuff out there of the “support me! support me!” variety.
So, my choice was whether or not to just turn down the charity fundraiser idea – and indeed, that was my kneejerk reaction. It seemed like just bad timing, what with so much other stuff coming up (like this very project about which I speak now!) but…it really was such an incredible once-in-a-lifetime thing to be a part of, I just couldn’t say no.
And I’m glad I didn’t. Despite it being a damn hard slog to raise that $10k (and continuing to be!), I know that if I died tomorrow, I’d be really proud that I sucked up my doubts and worries and just went for it anyway.
Point is, I was worried it would be too much, to do a massive fundraising campaign for charity, followed almost immediately by a campaign for the new show.
But, as somebody very wise pointed out to me, this (i.e. the show campaign) is a totally different project and the people who support it may be totally different from those (no doubt with some overlap) who got on board the charity fundraiser. Namely cos they are two separate motivations for supporting. One is about donating to a charitable cause, the other is about jumping onboard a creative mission and getting cool stuff for your cash: be they show tickets, DVDs, cupcake serenades, or cabaret/comedy parties in your loungeroom.
Again, I want to stress that:
a) I still love ya cottonsocks whether you support or not; and
b) I will do my best not to annoy the living daylights out of you by pushing it on you over and over. I really appreciate the love and support I’ve gotten this far on the journey and I want to respect that without banging you over the head, but of course will be sharing my excitement and updates as we go. Please bear with me!
I still have doubts. I still have worries. But trumping all that is THE EPIC EXCITEMENT ABOUT THIS NEW SHOW. The kind of excitement that again, makes me know that if I died tomorrow, I’d be really proud that I sucked up my doubts and worries and just went for it anyway.
Let’s bring on The Wonderland!
Again, this is the link to share: www.pozible.com/wonderland
So….not to go all soapie cliffhanger on you, but I have to let you know: I have an incredibly exciting launch coming tomorrow.
Particularly if you have any interest in any of the following:
- “An Unexpected Variety Show”;
- Adelaide Fringe;
- the new show I’m working on at the moment;
- Betty and the Betties;
- parties; and/or
…if you’re into ALL of the above?
You’re about to hit the jackpot baby.
As this week I have been madly getting together my Adelaide Fringe show deets for next year (so excited!) I remembered this document I started working on YONKS ago (as in, I started taking notes of promo things that I found were working while I was at the Adelaide Fringe this year) as I did indeed, have a rather good run.
Soooo…in a move of stunning procrastination on next year’s Fringe deets, I decided to finally polish off my debrief from THIS year’s Fringe deets! It’s like the laziest time travel experience ever.
This is not a definitive, exhaustive list, by any means. It is rather a pretty personal debrief of all the chunks of promo I did while in Adelaide, which, while not all of them will work for everybody (as you’ll see if you do choose to check it out, a few of them were just good old-fashioned lucky!) but I think there’s plenty in there that will at least be good food for thought as you start making your plans for Fringe 2013. Personally I think it’s worth checking out even if you’re not doing the fringe but are into promoting shows full stop. But it is most certainly geared towards the Fringe in terms of offering examples of doing guest spots in other festival line-ups, etc. I hope that makes sense!
I would love to share it with those of you who are interested in this kind of stuff and have FINALLY gotten my butt into gear and worked out how to upload a free PDF! So if you’re keen, just look over to the right sidebar there and click on the image of me strutting like a ham that says “Free PDF” etc. It should be emailed directly to your inbox within 24 hours, mail chimp working as it should!
I truly hope it’s helpful, us artists have to stick together man! (Sorry for calling you ‘man.’ It just pops out sometimes when I’m excited. Which is often.)
Better shows, better promo, better industry = better for everybody!
Woodford is coming up faster than my anxiety at getting through the next few months/my life.
But seriously, SOOOOOO thrilled to announce that not only am I coming back to perform all over every corner of this year’s Woodford Folk Festival – truly, it’s a highlight of my year, both in terms of doing gigs and the family being able to come along for the ride (they LURRRRRRVE it!) but…I’m coming with Betty and the Betties! Wooohooooooooo!
This will also mark the debut of my new show, “Jenny Wynter’s Wonderland! Featuring Betty and the Betties.” (Friday 28th Dec, 10.20pm at The Parlour.)
Stoked. Stoked. Stoked.
Now I just have to finish writing it! Up, up and away!
So as we approach the end of the year, here in CM land big things are happening.
I’m getting sorted for early 2013′s plans, the likes of which include Adelaide Fringe (again! With a whole new show! Which includes the faboosh Betty and the Betties! And a guitarist! And guests! I am secreting stuff in excitement right now) and other festival madness I am sworn to secrecy about.
I’m applying for new passports for the entire family. It is expensive, both in $$ and in wrist-exertion from signing stuff.
AND…gearing up for my first ever series of cruise ship gigs. AAAGGGGHHHH!!! So happy. They are very kindly allowing me to take turns bringing a family member on these bouts of sea-faring with me, first up will be Mister 8 on a trip to Fiji in November (fair, given he missed out on Adelaide fringing this year) and we are both pumped.
Life is busy and good.
And my house is only one of the above.
It’s a sad state of affairs when the only thing that can even give me a glimpse of motivation to get on top of the mess is the thought “I should make a youtube clip out of this.”
Sums me up in a nutshell, really!
Writing and performing An Unexpected Variety Show has been one of the hardest, most thrilling, painful and exhilarating experiences of my life.
The content of the show itself forms an emotional rollercoaster, so it seems fitting that my own ride performing it, from the insecurity of launching it at the Melbourne Fringe where nobody knew who the heck I was, to the complete out of the blue delight of it winning the Cabaret Award at that same festival, to a rocking season at Adelaide Fringe, to even being accepted into a festival in NYC this year (an opportunity it PAINED me to turn down, chiefly due to finances!) to sharing the show with my daughter in the front row for the very first time, to performing it in front of my brother and sister on the night of my 10th wedding anniversary, to having complete strangers email me with their own incredibly personal and heartbreaking stories saying how it impacted them (AMAZING, SO honoured), to the excruciation of performing the same painful portion of the show night after night after night, has been exactly that.
And it’s that last bit – the pain of performing the show – which has brought me to the decision to put it to bed.
At least for a LONG TIME. And at least for Australia. It would have to take something HUGE (like NYC and actually having the ability to take it there!) to bring it out of retirement.
Those of you who’ve seen it will understand what I’m talking about. When I was writing the show, I knew that I wanted to do something different from just pure comedy. I wanted to do something massively personal, something dark as well as light, something real, something authentically me. And when I first started performing the piece – and people started responding – I was so happy to go there.
But earlier this year it got to a point where I felt like performing this piece was starting to hurt me. I’m specifically talking about the material about my mum and her very sad premature death. It was like going over the same wound night after night after night – OR, I could switch off my emotions to protect myself, only then the performance itself felt disconnected. Do you suffer for your art or does your art make you suffer? Where do you draw the line?
Well, I’m drawing it here. I have started writing my next show – one which I’m already getting ridiculously excited about, it’s going to be massively musical, interactive and SILLY! – and in the name of moving forward, have decided that I want to give An Unexpected Variety Show a fitting farewell in front of a supportive homecrowd, record it onto DVD so that any who wish to see it, still can! That this final Aussie performance will be part of the Brisbane Cabaret Festival at the scrumptious Judith Wright Centre is just a GODSEND. It really is going to be magical.
To all who have supported the show thus far, I want to say a huge thank you. Whether you’ve bought a ticket, facebooked it, tweeted it, reviewed it, told your friends to come see it, messaged me, approached me, or even just sent a positive thought this way, THANK YOU!!!!!!!! Any performer who gets a show up and running on a shoestring knows how bloody all-consuming it is. When I’ve been on the downward spiral on the coaster, these little nuggets of support have totally gotten me through.
I’m so proud of the show. And I will be proud as I wave it goodbye.
Wanna join me?
Tickets here. (Just click on my head on the poster!)
Last week was one of the most exhausting, elating and extreme slots of time I’ve had in my entire life. It did not, however, get off to a rip-roaring start.
Completely shattered after a ridiculous weekend of last-minute fundraising (I believe my sleep total was quite possibly 8 hours for the entire weekend), when I arrived off the plane at Adelaide airport bright and early on Monday morning only to discover that the person giving me my ride to our first shoot location could not find me anywhere, it was, well, the straw that broke the camel’s back. Almost an HOUR late to find each other, when we finally did, the dam wall cracked and I burst into tears.
Missing the first challenge of the shoot. Missing sleep. Missing my kids.
The guy who picked me up apologised profusely for the confusion and suggested I take a moment to step into the bathroom and wash my face. “No, I’m fine,” I said. “I just want to get going!”
He insisted and led me to the bathroom, where I looked in the mirror and burst out laughing. My eyes were GLOWING RED. Fantastic. My first appearance on commercial television and I was going to look stoned off my freaking rocker.
In my fragile little “poor me” state, I found myself having second thoughts about the whole “wearing a tutu in every challenge!” thing. I called the fam and had a chat and moments later received this:
The upside of this little breakdown, of course, was that I got the lowest point of the entire week out of the way before it had even begun.
Because from then onwards, it was BEYOND AWESOME.
As for the constant filming stuff, may I reveal myself for the shameless piece of ham I am and let you know that I ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT. I think part of this is that the show’s not a reality TV piece in the whole “give us the dirt on what you really think about THIS person!” kinda way, it’s really about challenging yourself to these adventurous experiences onscreen. I loved that. Love the travel. Love the people. I’ve realised if I could just make a living shooting travel/adventure style docks like this one for the rest of my life I’d be a damn happy lady. Admittedly it was made umpteen times easier by a truly fabulous crew, including these three super lovely camera guys. Seriously, I cannot even choose which one I loved the most, they were such a sweet and professional bunch!
So now, it’s home again, home again, jiggedy jig.
So pumped to see the fam!
So not pumped to see the house looking like a shaken snow globe.
My body hurts, my tutu hurts…and I’d do it all again in a heartbeat.
So…it turns out shooting an adventure doco around multiple corners of a state is actually pretty damn hectic. I am shocked.
Blogging may be sporadic at best I’m afraid! However I am updating with photos and various attempts at seeming more amusing than I am over at my Facebook page if you care to play along!
In short, I went through a pretty sooky first morning (combo of total exhaustion and missing my babies) but the bizarre fun of the while adventure soon kicked me into gear. Yesterday I had a moment which was worth the entire effort of getting here alone: I surfed. In a tutu. I may just die happy.
Photos will be uploaded as soon as I can pry them off the producers’ cameras!
Lotsa love from the road coming atchya!