On the Couch with Matthew Mitcham

Matthew Mitcham by John McRae oncWho is Matthew Mitcham?
Matthew Mitcham is a pathological perfectionist, chronic nail-biter, champion procrastinator, he dives a bit, likes entertaining people, and still doesn’t know what he wants to be when he grows up. He’s really good at starting things but not finishing them.

What would you do differently to what you do now?
I should have done more music education as a child. Not only is making music therapeutic in itself, it also gives you a community to be a part of in those awkward formative years at school. Not that it really mattered – I ended up hanging out with the musos at school anyway!

Who inspires you and why?
In life: Stephen Fry, because everything he does is gold . In sport: Greg Louganis, because he is the best diver the sport has ever seen. (He is also winning at life.) In cabaret: Michael Griffiths, because he has three one-man shows going on all at the same time and they’re all fabulous.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
Give everyone a ukulele. I can’t help but feel that WWII might not have eventuated if Hitler had been able to express himself through song. I mean, how many wars have been started by musicians?

Favourite holiday destination and why?
Rome, because licorice gelato is my favourite and there’s a gelateria on every block that sells it. The people are easy to look at, too, I guess.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
My favourite Thai restaurant in Kings Cross. It’s this unassuming little place called ‘Pad Thai’ just off the main strip. The attraction (apart from the food) is sitting by the front door and watching what goes by.

What are you currently reading?
The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer. (Who is also winning at life.)

What are you currently listening to?
I’m loving London Grammar, East and Montaigne, but hands down my favourite song right now is Miracle by Kimbra.

Happiness is?
An almond croissant and a cappuccino every time I fly out of Sydney Airport.

What does the future hold for you?
World domination and diabetes, probably.

Matthew Mitcham OAM is the 2008 Olympic champion from the 10m platform, having received the highest single-dive score in Olympic history. He is the first Australian male to win an Olympic gold medal in diving since 1924.

Matthew also reaffirmed his position as a world champion by winning a gold and two silver medals at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games. He has previously won gold for Australia at the World Cup (Changzhou 2010).

Matthew will be performing his show Twist and Turns at Arts Centre Melbourne: 30 – 31 January; Brisbane Powerhouse: 5 – 6 February; Perth’s Fringe World: 10 – 16 February; and Sydney’s Seymour Centre: 26 – 28 February.

For more information, visit: www.twistandturns.com.au for details.

Image: Matthew Mitcham – photo by John McRae