Thoughts from the sea...
Gidday. Sophie here. I used to always get to this time of year and do the classic highlights wrap up of my favourite shows. I’m well aware we are all sick of hearing about COVID but I cannot deny the fact that it has altered my life in a number of ways, or at least has given it a good old shake up.
2020 I shifted home to Dunedin from Melbourne coincidentally just before we went into the first of many lockdowns - after performing between NZ, Australia and China. 2021 I was back touring and performing as much as I possibly could within border restrictions. When we went into full lockdowns again I was looking down the barrel of a second clean wipe cancellation of all of my performing work. I took a job as marketing manager for NZ Opera, had my tonsils chopped out (no better time than when all of your gigs are cancelled) and moved to the City of Sails.
COVID certainly taught me some pretty valuable lessons in the meantime though such as finding some hobbies again and trying to find an identity outside of being a performer. Still working on those…
March this year I sang my first public gig again - to a crowd of 100 in traffic light restrictions. It was small but at the time it felt huge. Soon after that I had a guest role on Shortland Street… Restrictions started to ease and momentum came back… I performed national anthems and gigs at venues including Spark Arena and Eden Park... I met some wonderful people and worked on some special projects.
Every year heading into a new year I get an uneasy feeling - what will I be doing next year? what gigs will I have? are you a singer if you have no gigs?? But COVID (and the mere realities of being a performer) have given me some pretty solid practice in not having a grand plan. And as I write this I am on the ocean headlining my own shows on the Seabourn Odyssey finding my stage sea legs (literally) - so I am certainly not going to be quiet anytime soon.
I think it’s super important to look back as well as look ahead… Thank you to everyone who has continued to support me in many different ways, shapes and forms. Have a wonderful summer and I cannot wait to see you soon to spin some yarns and sing some songs