It isn’t every day someone you know writes and performs in their own cabaret show, so my ears pricked up when I heard about Lou Spargo’s debut cabaret professional at the upcoming Melbourne Fringe Festival and I pounced on her to find out more.
A former Collins Street lawyer, Lou delights in being fashionably late to the party in her show, ‘A delay to somewhere‘, an upbeat and satirical comedy in which she lays bare the reality of life as an unemployed cabaret performer, matters of the heart, unfulfilled expectations and the time clock in her head.
Ditching her job as a commercial litigation lawyer at age 28 to take up a musical theatre course, Lou says she felt like a fish out of water, being older than half the class:
I’ve spent my life feeling like I don’t belong, like I haven’t found my niche, so that’s what my show is exploring.
“The show is about making that initial change. It’s an ongoing struggle to continue to live life as an artist and the values that are important to you – like having nice things and going out to dinner – but I didn’t like working in an office by myself pouring through boring legislation.”
I think you spend a lot of time at work and you should feel inspired by what you do.
Why did she choose cabaret?
“The key to being in the arts in Australia is diversifying what you do. If you sit around waiting for auditions it can be disheartening. Cabaret is a great way to generate and write my own work. I like being on stage and being me. On some level it’s therapy. What I’m writing is so personal and biographical, which is hard because I don’t know how to finish it, I feel like it needs to be perfect, but that wouldn’t be real,” she says.
Life’s not all a cabaret show for Lou, who also has a day job as campaign manager for the Leukaemia Foundation.
“You need balance, I have a credit card to pay off. It’s not all black and white and you have to find shades of grey to make it work. I didn’t grow up in an artists’ family, so a conservative mindset is part of me,” says Lou.
She may be delayed to where she’s going but this girls got a killer combination of guts, talent, beauty, intelligence, wit, determination, disarming honesty and passion that can only lead her to great places.
Lou’s show is an inspiration (or cautionary tale) for anyone contemplating a career change, or any change for that matter, and a (mostly) encouraging endorsement for living life without a GPS.
If you fancy watching Lou belt her way through an eclectic mix of music theatre, modern pop, and even a taste of some classic Nashville you can buy tickets here: www.melbournefringe.com.au
For your chance to WIN a double pass to Lou’s show on Saturday 20 September 2014 follow @ohmygoodness_au on Instagram and keep an eye out for competition details to be announced on Thursday 11 September 2014.