On the Couch with Linden Furnell

Linden Furnell Arts Review On the CouchWho is Linden Furnell?
I presume you mean ‘who is Linden’ – in which case… I’m an actor and a singer songwriter. I grew up in the Blue Mountains, have 2 younger sisters and both parents are musicians that have normal jobs. I left Australia just after my 20th birthday to do a BA in Musical Theatre in Singapore. Lived and worked there for near 7 years and moved back to Australia mid last year to get a foot in the Aussie theatre scene. My main passion is songwriting, but since falling into theatre thanks to teenage years at the Blue Mountains Musical Society, I’m very interested in writing for theatre.

What would you do differently to what you do now?
I don’t tend to think that way. Everything that’s happened in my life has fed into the present. Wait, the other day on the drive to Melbourne, I got lucky in a pub raffle draw and got to go and choose a card from a deck. I chose the card directly below the winning Joker and missed out on $5000. See, I kept saying to myself I SHOULDA picked the one above. But that’s ridiculous, a wrong choice is a wrong choice, not a close choice. It made no difference where in the deck it lay.

Who inspires you and why?
Not any famous person or anything… well, there are a few musicians that I consider to be geniuses e.g. Chris Thile, Adam Guettel, Sondheim etc. But honestly, anyone who has immense focus and determination. I really admire people who zone in on a project or task and single-mindedly pursue it to the end. I tend to get excited by many things and sometimes am distracted and pulled in conflicting directions.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
Well, assuming I have influence over a large group of people one day, I suppose I would like to use my music to blow awareness open on injustices that go under the radar. I mean, anyone can give money to a charity or something, but changing people’s minds is the harder, longer lasting difference. Don’t ask me what specifically, I haven’t figured that out yet, but I’m sure it will present itself when the time is right.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
I love South East Asian countries like Malaysia, Cambodia, Thailand. More so the countryside than cities. Beautiful open scenery, simple and kind people, delicious food.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
There are some beautiful cliff climbs and scenic walks in the upper Blue Mountains that date back over 100 years. I feel very proud to show people the beauty of my home.

What are you currently reading?
A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara. I hear from friends it’s a jerker, so I have the Aloe Kleenex by my bed.

What are you currently listening to?
Punch Brothers latest album. Snarky Puppy’s latest right before that.

Happiness is?
Theoretically, enjoying the everyday moments. wanting for nothing more than you already have. And perhaps a person to squeeze when you wake in the morning. I’m finding there’s a big difference between happiness, and the temporary buzz I get from performing. That’s a drug, one I’m a little addicted to. Happiness would be when I can let go of that and still love my life.

What does the future hold for you?
Recording and releasing an album next year. Finding a better sense of balance in my life. I plan on moving to NYC in a couple years. I’m sort of in love with the lifestyle there.

Linden will be appearing in Songs for a New World at Chapel off Chapel from 2 June 2016. For more information, visit: www.chapeloffchapel.com.au or www.bluesaint.com.au for details.

Image: Linden Furnell

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