Category Archives: Blogs

March – August 09 Mega Blog!

Hey Funsters,

Well it must be that time of year again when I make myself available to the world wide interweb by putting finger to keyboard and whip out a bit of blog action directly from what is left of my grey matter. Now as some of you will be aware of by now… I am not the most efficient blogger. Where does all this typing time come from? I have had some good lessons from Wil Anderson on how to tweet so hang in there… I am may even out-groove myself and get on twitter… 160 characters twice a year shouldn’t be too taxing. So… Aside from the nappies (the baby’s, not mine) the inevitable bouts of various delightful childhood diseases and spending more time in parks and various playcentres than on any sort of red carpet!

It has been quite a busy couple of months touring this wide brown land (Australia) and even heading further afield to the United States of the Americas and Canada. It was great to see some of you in April for the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. We had a terrific week staying in St Kilda and had a very different festival than in years gone by with so many comics forgoing the massive nights out, to all meet up in parks with our kids… I am telling you we were all dancing on tables in Ibiza a moment ago and now we spend our time picking up snotty tissues and mashing up banana. – Don’t you just love the celebrity lifestyle? It is exactly the same as everyone else except we wear more gowns.

Sydney is always ready and waiting for the Cracker Festival in April. This year I got to host the Gala at the Enmore which was a great honour. The show was going so smoothly and I even had USA management in to watch me with the hopes of looking after me for American work. I have to admit that I did have one of those back patting moments where you put some time aside to just love yourself. I may have a few too many of those – but I digress:

Well… I had one more act to introduce and then my official duties were over. He was one of the bigger acts of the festival and is a huge star in the States but to be honest I had not heard of him – but do bear in mind that in no way am I groovy or with any sort of finger on the pulse. (Mind you I can tell you any intricate detail of useless celebrity gossip or what new style of shoe Christian Louboutin is about to release – but when it comes to popular US comics I have no idea.) So I gave him a big intro and welcomed Pablo Rodriguez to the stage. I was relaxing off to the side when all of a sudden I saw 6 people running up the side of stage stairs and I thought “what the hell is wrong with these freaks?”. It was then that my stomach sank and I realised that I had used the wrong name for the top ‘name’ on the bill. The comedian, fabulous USA impressionist Pablo Francisco, had now had his name changed by me and all hell had broken loose… whoopsie. In my defence, new baby Sophie was only a few months old and poor old mumma’s nappy brain was in full of poo poo… so Pablo, beg pardon. The word of my outrageous faux pas spread far and wide and even earned me a Time Out award, aptly named “The Pablo Rodriguez award for excellence in MCing”.

David and Lisa Cambell’s artistic direction of the Adelaide Cabaret Festival in June was a truimph. Everyone seemed to be very impressed at the star power they had gathered but the truth is they had just searched their global address book and invited a few old buddies, including the legendary Bernadette Peters (who I managed to introduce using the correct name…yessss). I arrived on stage to host the opening night Gala flying in on a wire – my life is so not normal some days. It was such a treat to see Jimmy Barnes singing with David and his sister Mahalia at a late night ‘Soul Mates’ gig that literally ripped the roof clean off the Adelaide Festival Centre. Having been such a massive Barking Spiders fan since I was a young woman… it was almost like a visitation.

The Brisbane “In Stitches” festival in June was loads of fun with two glorious nights at the sensational QPAC. Even Aussie film maker Brodie Lane made it up from Sydney to see the show. So just a quiet time as usual! Early July I managed to perform, for the first time in my 75 years in the business, at Sydney’s prestigious Opera House. The show was called Spontaneous Broadway and the cast were so insanely talented that it hurt my feelings. The magnificent Julia Zamiro, the delicious Genevieve Morris, the very sexy Geoff Payne, the hilarious Ross Daniels, fabulous Russell Fletcher and the musical wizard John Thorn. Both shows were way too much fun… there are not too many times in one’s career that we get to sing about two greyhounds named Paris and Nicole, who were fighting while running in the 5th race in Dapto. Enough said.

The good news from the past few months is that I have finally ‘let go’ of my obsession with people parking in the pram spaces at our local shopping centre in Bondi. It was getting to a stage where I was staking out the car park ready to pounce on the gym junkies who wanted to park near the door to go inside and run for 10kms. I was using some of my own private time to plan their deaths… and let’s face it, that’s really not that healthy, so I had to let it go. (I still twitch when I see one of them park but I just plan their deaths under my breath and drive on).

Then in mid July I packed a bag full of brand new Charlie Brown gowns and made my way to the Montreal Just For Laughs Festival (via a quick shopping trip in LA). The festival was wall to wall comedy stars and the gigs were all over town. There is something really fantastic about crossing the planet and going to a place were you have a ready made group of old mates and collegues… it’s like a fun school trip but with no curfew and a few dry white wiiiiines.

Most of the gigs went until midnight so by the time everyone made their way back to the Hyatt Montreal bar, there was little chance anyone was making it to bed before 3am. It was loads of laughs to clock who had written themselves off the night before and spent most of the next day apologising… I kept thinking ‘oh I have so been there’ but not this festival. I was on my best behaviour and did some really great business… where is old party jmo doing nude headstands in the corner? I do miss her. This time I was all business handing out my book to US TV execs and trying to direct everyone to my new website… The crew from Good News Week were there filming the big Galas and interviewing comedians from all over the world. Paul McDermott was in vintage form and really is a gentleman and a scholar. Wil Anderson was being heavenly and very funny, as was honorary Aussie Ross Noble and my dear old friend Hillsy (Adam) was in sparkling form, hosting every big gig in town. Jimeoin was still the funniest man on any bill and Akmal was ripping his gigs apart. Relative newcomer, Tom Ballard was not only charming and delightful but easily held his own with some of the best comics on the planet. It has to be said the Aussies really shone. My personal festival highlight was being chosen to be on Whoopi Goldberg’s All Star Gala. Whoopi was such a very generous host and really showed us how it’s done. She is relaxed while at the same time razor sharp. As Wil Anderson said “it was like watching a comedy masterclass” Whoopi is a true superstar.

So I am back in Sydney for the time being, getting lots of snuggles from my girls Ruby and Sophie… we still think Sophie is going to be a teen model, as she spends most of her 8 month old days smiling and chucking. Ruby is chatting very well for 2 and a half and is happy that winter is coming to an end. (The winter in Sydney can be so grueling and gets down to nearly 18 degrees some days so a cardi can be required). Both babies seemed to have curbed their swearing lately which is great but one of them has started to say “kiss my bum Mummy” and all I can think of when she asks that is that it feels like I am back working for the big networks. Oh well.

Keep an eye out for me over the next few months as I hit the road again… Looking forward to coming to Darwin and the Hunter in mid August, getting jiggy with my Fernwood homies in Canberra in early September, Brisbane Writers Festival the weekend of the 12th, and there are whispers of LA maybe in early October, soon followed by a long-overdue trip to Perth.

PHEW -THAT WAS HUGE! I am sure there is loads more news that I have forgotten but you know that my brain is not that big and I lose lots of stuff. Lots of love until I see you and hope that you and yours are way too well.

jmo x

Dear Friends

Hope you are way too well… I am relaxing in the private home of some close friends in Bel Air, just a little sun kissed from the convertible drive down to Malibu yesterday… sometimes showbiz can be a gruelling struggle.

Crossing my fingers I will see some of you in Montreal,  as I take the royal JMo tour to Canada.  The infamous ‘invitation meet’  Just For Laughs comedy festival should be a blast and I have to say I am looking forward to making myself available to one or two good times.

When I arrive back in Sydney I will be popping up on Good News Week and stoking the substantial number of irons that I have in so many of life’s fires.

Love you madly

JMo x