On the Couch with Sarah-Louise Young

Sarah-Louise Young photo by Jamie ZubairiWho is Sarah-Louise Young?
Sarah-Louise is a cabaret clown, songwriter and storyteller, obsessive wig collector, Kate Bush fan and lover of cheese… not to be confused with the adult entertainer of the same name.

What would you do differently from what you do now?
By the time I have answered this question there will be a new ‘now’… so the best answer I can give is to stay more present. On stage there is no choice other than to be in the moment and respond to what or who is in front of you. It’s one of the reasons I love cabaret – you’ve got to be alert and ready to set sail in a new and sometimes unexpected direction. Off stage I can be a little prone to nostalgia. I would like to appreciate the power of now a little more often.

Who inspires you and why?
People who live their lives in line with their values, but who aren’t afraid to interrogate and challenge their beliefs and evolve. Those who are unashamedly ‘work-in-progress’. Quietly generous souls who give without fanfare. Flawed humans who make art from their mistakes.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
Share resources, be vulnerable, admit mistakes and challenge authority.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
Home. I’m rarely there and if I manage more than a month this year my husband has promised we can get rescue cats!

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
A walk from one chapter of the city to another, taking in at least one decent pint and some local delicacies along the way. I lived in London for 25 years and loved taking friends on walking tours as opposed to using public transport so they got a sense of all the diverse neighbourhoods connecting together. I always prefer feet over wheels.

What are you currently reading?
John Irving’s The Last Chairlift. It’s his first novel in seven years and I love how he explores multi-generational families and dances with magical realism.

What are you currently listening to?
Legend – the Joni Mitchell Story
on BBC Sounds. I was a huge Joni fan growing up. I’ve also just finished the brilliant The Witch Farm by Danny Robbins. If you like your ghost stories full of life, I highly recommend it.

Happiness is?
Being wholly seen and loved as you are by the people you love the most.

What does the future hold for you?
I refer you back to my answer to Question 2.

Sarah-Louise stars in An Evening Without Kate Bush – which will be presented at the Wharf 1 Theatre (The Thirsty Mile), Walsh Bay Arts Precinct: 18 – 21 January, as part of the 2024 Sydney Festival. For more information, visit: www.sydneyfestival.org.au for details.

Image: Sarah-Louise Young – photo by Jamie Zubairi