On the Couch with Hugh Sheridan

Hugh Sheridan Arts Review On the Couch Who is Hugh Sheridan?
Good question, it’s hard to define myself in an answer, however I feel like I’ve come to know myself very well, ha! I’m pretty easy going these days, but like most people you have to endure years of personal struggle on varied levels to know yourself. I think my grandparents would be proud of me, that helps me like me, not proud for my work but my day to day choices, actions… I always try to walk through life with an empathetic heart and no judgment. Worth noting I’m also a clown.

What would you do differently to what you do now?
Right now? Not much, maybe put more time for writing? I’ve spent the last few years looking at all the things I didn’t like about how I lived my life and I feel that most of that is on the mend… I guess it’s worth pointing out that I spend a lot more time thinking about “where I am” in this second, I try and take stock. I check in with myself, my higher power and meditate… helps slow life down a bit.

Who inspires you and why?
People, animals, children and nature. Anything spontaneous and instinctive, I’m inspired by the creative time and space we live in, I enjoy watching the world. Listening to exchanges between people and nature is my main inspiration when songwriting or performing.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
You know, I consciously try and walk my own talk these days. I spend a fair amount of my weeks doing service work and often for complete strangers. I think the big difference is made when everyone does their own little bit. I’ve noticed through all the unrest and animosity in the world right now, more and more people are feeling the need to do something, even little actions of kindness, to push through all the separation. It seems little to you but collective consciousness is picking up on it too.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
The Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia. It’s beautiful, it’s my childhood beaches. I feel so lucky to travel all over the world, but I always come back convinced it’s still the most rugged, majestic coastline on earth.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
It depends where I am. My home is LA these days so I take them to the downtown LA arts district. It’s actually changing before your eyes – I imagine NYC in 1975 might have had the same hustle, clash of cultures, people yelling in different languages, artists, actors, amazing restaurants. It’s a beautiful place to share with friends.

What are you currently reading?
The Rattling Wall – a literary journal my friend Dustin gave me. He’s a comedian who worked for one of the writers on the book. It’s short stories and poems from LA authors about the US and the world.

What are you currently listening to?
All Again by Josh Nelson and Sara Gazarek. Josh plays piano for me in when I perform in the US. He’s so talented – he was concert pianist for Natalie Cole, so I feel very honoured he works with me haha. Sara I’ve listened to for years, I had no idea he played for her too until he gave me their new album. It’s an amazing album, exquisitely put together.

Happiness is…?
Self love: the best way to self love is through self care. It’s also ‘inner peace’. The best way to inner peace is a free conscience, so make the choices and take the actions that reflect the person you want to be.

What does the future hold for you?
I don’t really want to know the answer to that! My life’s been a bloody rollercoaster so far, many unexpected turns and twists. Even the ‘shit’ times I look back fondly on because they’re often the times of most growth. I’m excited for the future, I don’t know where it will lead but I’m gonna try my hardest to enjoy where I am now and let the future take care of itself.

Hugh is an ambassador for the 2017 Adelaide Fringe – currently running until 19 March. For more information, visit: www.adelaidefringe.com.au for details.

Image: Hugh Sheridan (supplied)