On the Couch with Kanen Breen

Kanen Breen Arts Review On the CouchWho is Kanen Breen?
Kanen Breen, tickler of fancies, deliverer of opera, divider of opinion. A sad clown, a happy hooligan, an introverted extrovert; an intro-extrovert?

What would you do differently to what you do now?
Singing can be, at times, a very isolated and self- focused job. Hours spent alone practicing, learning, experimenting, perfecting. Sometimes I’m so sick of the sound of my voice and the sight of my face in the dressing room mirror, I want to run from the building and vanish into a crowd! If I had the chance to do things differently, I hope I would choose a more outward-looking, community focused career with a more tangible sense of giving back to the world.

Who inspires you and why?
Right now, Cabaret Goddess Meow Meow is rocking my world and whipping my ass into shape in the rehearsal room for Victorian Opera’s fantastic project ’Tis Pity. The wit, the intellect, the range (and the legs!) on this one are to be savoured and treasured. Under the equally inspiring direction of hot young director Cameron Menzies, the rehearsal room is resonating with laughter and magic and chaos. Meeting artists as keen to play without a safety net as I am is always an inspiring thrill! I love it! Xxx

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
I am raising the most Beautiful 4 year old boy with my best friend Jacqui Dark. I wish I could make the world safer for him, more joyous, more accepting. I cannot do that, but I can help HIM to be joyous and open and loving and empathetic. We are teaching him to be the change we wish for the planet; to listen without judgement, to care and to share, to see the needs of others as an extension of his own. What more can we do to prepare him for a world so fraught with peril and inhumanity?

Favourite holiday destination and why?
My bed, with 10 hours uninterrupted sleep! It’s been a LOOOONG time since I’ve enjoyed THAT particular luxury resort!!!

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
We would head out to the Dandenong’s on a cold and hopefully misty day for Devonshire tea followed by beers, all in front of a roaring open fire. The colder the better so long as it’s warm inside and the conversation is scintillating.

What are you currently reading?
The score of ’Tis Pity! Wrangling a four year old who keeps showbiz hours leaves little to no time at this point to sink into a good book. We write our own stories every night at bedtime about a beautiful witch who helps him and his friends through any dif?culties they may have faced during the day. It is such a joy to behold the sleepy imagination of a little person sorting through life’s wonders and woes.

What are you currently listening to?
The three shows that I am currently either rehearsing or about to rehearse! It’s work, every spare moment, but essential homework when one is a freelance singer expected to turn up on the ?rst day of a new gig, word and note perfect.

Happiness is?
Spontaneous kisses from the little man, the company of my friends and family and the continued opportunities that hard work present in my crazy life’s path.

What does the future hold for you?
Next stop Adelaide for two epic projects in Neil Armfield’s Arts Festival, then more adventures in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney again! Qantas loves me!

Kanen will be appearing alongside Meow Meow in ’Tis Pity: An Operatic Fantasia on Selling the Skin and the Teeth at the Melbourne Recital Centre: 4 – 8 February 2017. For more information, visit: www.victorianopera.com.au for details.

Image: Kanen Breen (supplied)