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  • Writer's pictureJenny Wynter

Johnny Depp, Henri Szeps & I

The only thing better than having my first ever major profile in The Courier Mail, is having the front page of the lift-out covered in Johnny Depp’s face.

You see, I have a bit of a thing for Johnny Depp. That is, if by ‘bit’, you mean ‘completely out-of-control, undying and certainly completely mutual-if-we-ever-met’.

Okay, I lurrrrvee him. So to be only four pages apart from each other in the Arts lift-out…(even if the photo you can see makes me look like Hannibal Lector’s long lost daughter) well, that is what it’s all about.

This has been such a wicked weekend.

On Friday I got to interview Henri Szeps on the Frog and Peach on 4ZZZ – for the benefit of my overseas pals, let me tell you he is something of an Aussie icon, most famous for his turn in a very funny eighties series Mother in Son amongst a gazillion other productions for stage and screen: he’s worked with pretty much anybody who’s anybody in our industry.

In the flesh, he is a man of such immense presence and power that while he is very friendly, you actually feel awe-struck, welcomed and intimidated at the same time. At the risk of repeating myself, I was so inspired.

Off-air he told me how much he’d loved Walk the Line: “There is such a clear and fabulous turning point in that film, it’s perfect. When he’s down on the tractor and she says to her father ‘I’m not going down there,’ and he says ‘honey, you’re already down there.’ It just turns it in this entire other direction, it’s an extraordinary film.” Brilliant observations, yet I was too busy thinking oh my heavens, Henri Szeps is talking to me. Jenny, snap out of it and nod. I nodded.

I mentioned I did stand-up comedy and asked how he incorporated stand-up into his show “Why Kids?”. He said “stand-up is fantastic, but the thing is with a stand-up comedian, no matter how good they are, they won’t make an audience cry. I want to make an audience feel happiness and tragedy. It’s stand up drama.

Did you hear that? That was my mind ticking over.

Okay, ticking’s stopped.

I later had the good fortune of catching his solo show (which I’m reviewing for Vibewire, so will let you know when that’s up) that night and afterwards caught up with him briefly to tell him how inspired I’d been. “Bless you,” he said. “Do you want a book?” I had to run, but he said “Okay, nick off, nick off, I’ll send you one!” So cool, yet I was too busy thinking oh my heavens, Henri Szeps is talking to me. Jenny, snap out of it and nod.

I nodded.

Then went out to the in-laws’ place for a mini family reunion of sorts (my hubby’s brother and wife are visiting from overseas – the same brother and sister-in-law who are going to be in the States at the same time as me so will be joining me at various intervals to assist my mission to paint USA red, redder and redder still) then to top it all off, had an absolutely wonderful gig tonight at The Powerhouse.

So, I apologise for the lack of blogging action this weekend, but as you can see, it’s all for good reason. The only thing that can knock me off my happy happy little bubble of insert-nice-word-here, is the realisation that it’s only three weeks to go til I leave for New York. Not that that isn’t absolutely brilliant, but I’ve got a million things to do before then, not the least of which include:

– making a video for Ella and Cay to watch while I’m away; – writing a book for Ella, that Tim can read her at a rate of one page per day; – planning Ella’s birthday party (did I mention I’m going to be missing her fourth birthday? That just wrenches my guts out to the point where I can no longer even stomach chocolate. I know: dramatic, huh?)

I’m sooo scared about leaving them (did you see how many ‘o’s I put in the ‘sooo’? Wow, I hear you think, she must REALLY mean that!), but have resolved to stock up on as many cool American presents as possible so that upon my return I am fully equipped to buy their love back. Genius.

Ciao for now…rest assured I feel fully debriefed and will be back with short and sharp entries henceforth.

Jen. x

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