- Are you an insider or an outsider?
- Why do you classify yourself as one or the other?
- Is there an incident, book, film, story that you relate to which explains how you feel?
Great news! In January and February 2020 I will be joining British actor David Suchet as his interviewer on tour in Australia and New Zealand in a new stage show.
To say I’m thrilled to be joining David as interviewer in his upcoming tour, is a total understatement.
I had the absolute pleasure of sitting down with David in 2012 for my TV program One Plus One. At the time David was performing The Last Confession in Australia. To have this fifty year veteran of stage and screen reveal some of the incredible moments and pivots of his life was mesmerising and that interview remains one of my favourites to this day. David’s honesty shone through as he described his early challenges at boarding school, his beloved photographer- grandfather and his career as one of Britain’s most cherished character actors. As we well know, he’s best known for the long-running TV series Poirot. David is the Poirot we all love and remember. He is also so much more than that quirky Belgian detective.
Towards the end of our 2012 interview, knowing he was about to begin researching the role of Lady Bracknell in the London production of The Importance of Being Earnest, I surprised David on camera by giving him a rare old book I had recently found. It was called Oscar Wilde by Vyvyan Holland. I felt that this book (written by Wilde’s son) had somehow found David, through me!
Since then, I have followed David’s career with great delight. When I saw that he was due to return to our region to tour in a retrospective based around an in-conversation, I thought, perhaps I should reach out to the show’s producer. It was one of those passing thoughts which hold you in the moment, and which you often don’t act upon. But like the Oscar Wilde book which found David through me, one week later an email appeared from David’s producer, Liza McLean. It was Liza who had offered me the 2012 interview with David. To my incredulity, she asked whether I was interested in being part of David’s new venture, playing, you guessed it, the interviewer!
The show is so much more than either a retrospective or a classic in-conversation. It will be a feast for theatre lovers. David will perform some of his best-known and most-loved monologues from his repertoire. There will be video and images. My role will be like the thread in a string of pearls, bringing out his connection to the excerpts and unlocking the secrets of some of the most poignant turning points in David’s life and career.
For me, the stars have truly aligned having just departed from the ABC after a career as an international correspondent, TV presenter and founder of the interview show One Plus One. In nearly a decade presenting this unique little show, I conducted an incredible 500 face-to-face TV interviews. I am extremely excited to work alongside this very special actor who possess a deep intellect while exuding warmth and humanity…How lucky am I?
You can read the full statement hereComment
I've had so much love thrown my way since announcing my departure from the ABC that I think it's only right to acknowledge everyone who’s contributed to making One Plus One a success.
On the day of my final interview, I asked cameraman/photographer Adam Wyatt to take some images of my final production day.
It's with great pleasure that I introduce you to my colleagues, some of whom I've worked with since the beginning of the show in July 2010.
First up, I have to look good, right?
That is only possible with the transformative powers of the ABC News hair and make-up department.
For my final interview, make-up artist Elle Cox worked her magic.
Make-up artists don’t only make you LOOK good, they help you relax and focus before an interview. It’s like a therapy session/a laugh/switch off time before the guest arrives.
This is Clark Sheedy (pictured below) who supervises the make-up department. I've worked with him for around two decades and he’s a fabulous artist and an amazing organiser.
In early 2018 we finally moved into our own studio. Actually, it’s the same studio where Planet America and 7.30 go to air. We use four remote cameras, which means there are no operators on the studio floor. Just the guest and me… or on this special occasion, just presenter (Hamish Macdonald) and me.
The studio is worked by a director and technical director. On my last day it was Tim Kennedy and Michael Hartman...
Our regular director is Janet Argall with Michael Hartman (in glasses) as TD.
Between them, they adjust the cameras, lighting and sound and then Janet switches between the vision coming out of different cameras and make the program look like a smooth conversation.
My final interview with Hamish was extremely enjoyable, much to my surprise! I was expecting to be anxious but Hamish made me feel very comfortable. I had no idea where it was all going to go.
With the interview over, it was time for the fun part! I have always loved having the photos taken at the conclusion of each interview. It’s a moment of relief and joy.
And here below is the the secret to my great Professional Selfies. Thanks Adam!!
The final two images are a tribute to One Plus One’s production brilliant team: video editor Holly Dormor (left) and producer Barbie Dutter.
Each week without fail, Barbie and Holly fine tune my interview; editing it to 28 minutes and adding my reactions, different shots, photo images and video. We are a lean team, but we all share a deep commitment to our guests, who so generously give their time and their stories.
It’s been an honour to work with Barbie and Holly and I will miss themComment
Stepping into the sunshine, I feel myself unwind.
Suddenly the tight spiral staircase unravels inside me and in front of me like a long cloth unfurling.
This is what it's like to begin to feel free.
I see everything: the calm sea, fishing boats, the Island. Why so many oversized poodles?
It's the first day of Spring but warm enough to swim. There are races in the ocean pool.
This is what it's like to begin to feel free. No have-tos. No more homework. No people's heads to dive into into except my own.
I am an optimistic fisherman standing on the rocks.
Or a Mexican cliff diver whose feet have just left the edge....Comment