Thursday, 19 July 2012

Question Time - who is Jo Thomas?

Today I'd like to introduce you to Brisbane actress and artist, Ms Jo Thomas.

Jo and I met many years ago when we were cast in a show together.  The play was called "A Tale of Two Men" and was written by a local playwright and director, Scot McPhie.  It was the first time I was paid for my work as an actress, so it was a watershed moment in more ways than one.  There were four characters in the play, two men and two women.  Jo and I became good friends.

We've come and gone from each other's lives over the years and recently reconnected when Jo brought her show "Often I Find that I am Naked" to my neck of the woods.  I drove down to Geelong with a friend to see her strut her stuff.

Jo's a smart, interesting woman.  I hope you enjoy meeting her.  Oh, and did I mention she's just been awarded a Churchill Fellowship?

1. Who is Jo Thomas?
A girl (inside); a woman (outside); an artist; a friend; a lover; a story-teller; a questioning soul; a wanderer waiting; an adventurer and a constant insomniac! 

2. Where do you get your creative inspiration?
Many times from books - a word or a phrase - from people and actions I observe and from other art I see - in galleries, theatres, cinemas.  GOMA (Gallery of Modern Art) in Brisbane is one of my favourite places to hang out and enjoy space, beauty, quiet.  There's a gorgeous cafe sculpture garden which is a special spot.

3. What's your work routine?
Don't have much of a routine - it changes constantly depending on what I'm working on.  However, three regulars every day are: coffee, checking emails and exercising!  If I do these things I can get through anything else the day throws up.

4. What's your favourite word?
Oh so, so many.... this is hard.  I'm going with Dandiprat! (I had to look this one up...I always learn things from Jo!)

5. If you could script your dying words, what would they be?
I'm borrowing from Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller (Peggy Lee's hit...)... very tongue in cheek:

For I know just as well as I'm standing here talking to you,
when that final moment comes and I'm breathing my last breath, I'll be saying to myself,
Is that all there is, is that all there is
If that's all there is my friends, then let's keep dancing
Let's break out the booze and have a ball

6. What gets your hanky in a twist?
Leaf-blowers (use a broom!!); lack of leadership and courage in our political parties; prejudice and injustice; the terribly inefficient and expensive public transport in Australia.

7. What's your ambition?
To understand love.

8. What blogs do you read? 
Honestly the only one I read is divacultura.  I always have several books on the go - either on my e-reader and in paperback; and enjoy old fashioned magazines like The Monthly and The Big Issue. I get frustrated when I can't make notes on something I'm reading.

9. Finish this sentence, "If I was awarded a Churchill Fellowship I'd..." think they'd made an error but still buy myself a new frock and new shoes all ready for the Awards Ceremony at Government House! ;)

You can find Jo on the web over here:


  1. Great word! Great interview! But Jo, I want to know more! I looked at the links you included, and I can see that "Often I Find That I Am Naked" has finished (disappointed - it sounds like it was fabulous) and your profile on the Judith Wright Centre page says you're working on two new things (which also sound very interesting). But if we're intrigued and wanting to know more about what you're up to (in an ongoing way) how can we find out? Do you have an email newsletter, or a Twitter profile or a Facebook page for the work you do?

  2. Hi Rose - thanks for reading! And thanks to the lovely Tanya for posting.
    Um..... yes....
    Twitter: often_naked

    Here's hoping Naked will tour again... working on it!! xx