On the Couch with Mark Dickinson

Mark Dickinson - photo by Caterina FizzanoWho is Mark Dickinson?
An actor, singer…. competent mover. Or according to my twitter handle “Father, actor, singer, iphoneographer… stilt walker? May or may not be that Dr Brian Ironwood fellow.” I’ve been in this crazy singing, acting life professionally since about 1993. Have played roles in London on the West End. Have a 19 year old daughter. A passion, nay snobbery, for coffee and beer. And enjoying teaching and mentoring young adults trying to make headway into the performing arts.

What would you do differently to what you do now?
If I wasn’t doing ‘this’ in any way shape or form – including teaching – I’d consider being a barista or beer maker. Alternatively a counsellor to young adults with mental health related troubles.

Who inspires you and why?
My daughter is a wonderful inspiration to me. Everyday. People who face everyday life with challenges I’ve never had to face. Gender, race, mental health or sexuality obstacles are everywhere for people who have challenges or questions around these issues. I’ve never had to face many of them in my own life, but have witnessed countless. I won the lottery ticket of life. It’s important to have empathy.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
Teach empathy to people with privilege who can’t see their position as being privileged.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
Hong Kong is one of my favourite cities in the world and I’ve had many visits there for fun or relaxing times. My favourite destination I’m yet to go to would be Cambodia or Cuba. One day!

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
I love playing host to visitors to Melbourne. I’ve done it a lot. I take them to my favourite coffee places and bars. Usually Brunswick St, Smith St and surrounding areas. To the Botanic Gardens. And somewhere in the arts sector. A play, fringe festival, NGV.

What are you currently reading?
Scripts. Shakespeare. Much Ado About Nothing and Othello. Always finding more. Always learning.

What are you currently listening to?
I’m listening to a little Melody Gardot, some Paul Kelly, and Dave Matthews Band.

Happiness is?
My morning coffee ritual. Grinding beans, and making an aeropress, pour over, stove top or espresso. (Told you I was a snob!)

What does the future hold for you?
Creatively I’m very satisfied but there is alway more I want try, learn and experience. More tv and feature film is constantly a goal. I also see more teaching in the future. And there can never be enough kisses and ‘huggles’. Fortunately those are in great supply too, from my daughter, my girlfriend and her daughter. Life is good!

Mark is currently appearing in the Pop Up Globe’s productions of Much Ado About Nothing and Othello at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl in the Kings Domain, Melbourne. For more information, visit: www.popupglobe.com.au for details.

Image: Mark Dickinson – photo by Caterina Fizzano