On the Couch with Toby Francis

Toby Francis Arts Review On the CouchWho is Toby Francis?
Some dude who keeps putting his name on the elastic of all my underwear.

What would you do differently to what you do now?
I like to think I would have gone into a STEM field or Economics as those are the things that I’m really interested in now as hobbies. But really, I’m a pretty rubbish student so I have no idea where I’d be if I wasn’t doing this. And there’s probably nothing else I’d rather be doing honestly.

Who inspires you and why?
It’s clichéd to say, but my partner, Lauren. When I think about her, or even sometimes when I take a moment just to look over at her and watch whatever it is she is doing, she astounds me. Not because of what she is doing at that time but because I think about how she is as a person, I think about our life together. She doesn’t stop; she constantly gives her time to others and works hard. We’ve experienced almost half our lives together and she makes me want to be better. She inspires me and it makes me proud to say that she loves me.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
I think small choices in your day are the best way to consistently make a difference. Small things make large differences when compounded.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
Hands down, Disney World. I am shamelessly in love with that place.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
I usually have a wander with them down to Rushcutters Bay in Sydney. It’s simple, beautiful, and close to home.

What are you currently reading?
The first chapter of about fifty books that I’ll never finish.

What are you currently listening to?
Godwolf’s EP. Of which Kinky Boots‘ own Joe Kosky makes up half the group. And this isn’t one of those “I’m going to use an interview to tell people to go and listen to my friend’s music” kind of answer either. It really is top notch and I can not stop listening to it. They’ve already got a large and dedicated following so I’m not blowing the roof off the place with the reveal of some secret new band. I discovered them late but I’m now a massive fan.

Happiness is?
Over-rated. Contentment is where it’s at. Being content allows for happiness but it doesn’t come with all the pressure of not having a tough couple of months now and then. You can be content and sad, or you can be content and happy, but you can’t be happy and sad. Because those two things are opposites and that would be bananas… Wait, scratch that, I want to say Go-karting. Happiness is Go-karting. I’ve never seen anyone weeping into their helmet while Go-karting.

What does the future hold for you?
Kinky Boots as far as the eye can see… And that’s more than alright by me…

Toby is an award-winning performer, writer, and producer. As a member of The Ten Tenors, he toured America on the recent Home for the Holidays tour and Australia and New Zealand as part of The Power of Ten tour. He starred in the Australian premiere of Dogfight at Hayes Theatre Co, and in Tim Freedman and Alex Broun’s musical Truth, Beauty and a Picture of You.

In 2010, Toby won the 8th Annual Cabaret Showcase and went on to debut cabaret show Blokelahoma! directed by entertainer David Campbell. He penned Love and Death and an American Guitar, winning the 2014 Sydney Theatre Award for Best Cabaret Production. Toby also co-founded Highway Run Productions, producing two sell-out seasons of RENT at Hayes Theatre Co.

Toby stars as Charlie in the Australian premiere season of Kinky Boots, currently playing at Melbourne’s Her Majesty’s Theatre until 15 January 2017. For more information, visit: www.kinkybootsthemusical.com.au for details.

Image: Toby Francis – photo by J Green