Life Begins At » Get on the dance floor with Marcia Hines!
Celebrity Corner

Get on the dance floor with Marcia Hines!

Marcia Hines

By Pamela Connellan

Many of us grew up watching Marcia Hines on Countdown every Sunday night and it was no shock to us when she won Queen of Pop for three years running from 1976 to 1978. We loved her confidence, poise and the way she could really belt out a tune.

Nearly 40 years have gone by but surprisingly, not too much else has changed. Hines still has confidence and poise – and there’s no doubt she can still really belt out a tune. In an exclusive interview with The Retiree, she spoke about her latest work projects and whether she’ll slow down and retire one of these days.

She’s currently rehearsing for next year’s season of Velvet, a disco musical. Hines starred in Velvet last year with sold out performances at the Adelaide Fringe, Brisbane, Edinburgh and Sydney Opera House.

The Retiree: You’re currently rehearsing for next year’s season of Velvet, a disco musical which you starred in last year to sold-out performances at the Adelaide Fringe, Brisbane, Edinburgh and the Sydney Opera House. When you were first approached about Velvet, did you think a disco musical like this could work?

Hines: I always thought it was a great idea. My manager came up with it and we knew straight away in rehearsal, it was going to be good. Then when we went in front of audiences and it just exploded!

We did it last year at the Adelaide Fringe, Brisbane, Edinburgh and the Opera House and the audiences loved it.

The Retiree: You’re also rehearsing with your band for your Disco Inferno show which your taking on tour in NSW until the end of the year. Even though you’ve been a performer for a long time, do you still love that feeling of singing in front of an audience?

Hines: That’s a good question and if I were to put it into words, they just wouldn’t do it justice. You know it’s my medicine – it soothes me and it’s a very happy place to dwell in, when I entertain an audience.

The Retiree: You’re very busy – has it ever crossed your mind to slow down or semi-retire?

Hines: Why would I? I like being physical so as long as I’m able to do the shows, I’ll do them. But there will be some differences!  I can assure you I won’t be kicking my legs over my head! I may slow down but it will be a variation on the theme.

The Retiree: What would you do if you found you had some spare time?

Hines: My life’s allowed me to do so many great things, so to want more would make me a slightly ungrateful person.

The Retiree: How do you keep fit and healthy so you can keep up with your schedule?

Hines: I do a lot of walking – I usually walk eight or nine kilometres a day if I can. I sometimes walk around Centennial Park or I walk from Woolloomooloo to under the bridge and back – that’s a fair walk.

I used to really love roller blading but it became slightly uncool so I stopped. But I may take that up again and not worry what people think!

My shows keep me match fit as well. If you think there’s a lot going on onstage, you should see what’s going on back stage!

The Retiree: You’ve signed up for another Cruise N Groove which is a cruise featuring lots of great performers. The last Cruise N Groove you did was in 2013 – did you enjoy that?

Hines: I absolutely loved it. At first I thought in God’s name how am I going to handle this? But everyone was so cool and everyone was ready to party and it was just a great time. That’s why I want to do it again.

The Retiree: For this Cruise N Groove, there’s over 30 international and Australian artists performing across seven stages – it’s one of the biggest retro musical festivals ever staged. Did you enjoy the other acts?

Hines: That was the greatest thing about it. I sat and watched every act and I plan to do that again next time. We have a really good eclectic range of performers lined up. I’m looking forward to seeing KC and the Sunshine Band and Bony M and all the others.

The Retiree: You starred in Hair when you were just 16. Would you ever do a return season of it?

Hines: No, I wouldn’t do it. I don’t believe in that. Hair was a revolution – we were trying to change the world and we really believed we could. That was a certain time.

But I did do it for Superstar – we took it to the East – to Singapore and Asia – a few years ago. That’s a show I would do again. Superstar is a totally different thing.

The Retiree: Did you enjoy being a judge on Australian Idol?

Hines: I loved it. It was hard because there, but for the grace of God, I didn’t want to see people get ripped to shreds. But some of the guys in my show, Disco Inferno, came through Idol so that’s been great.

The Retiree: Do you ever travel to America to visit?

Hines: Yes, I travel a lot and I go to America often. I go to visit relatives and I find it a great place to watch shows. I go to Broadway and see what’s happening. I’ll never forget what America gave me and I’m a citizen of both countries – Australia and America.

The Retiree: You had asthma when you were quite young and still at school. Do you still have that and do you think it’s sometimes under-diagnosed?

Hines: Yes I do, but I’m OK. It rears its ugly head if I’m run down. I can’t really comment on whether it’s not diagnosed properly but it seems there’s a lot of asthma going around Australia. With mine, there’s no way they couldn’t be onto it – I was dying.

At school, from around December to before May, I couldn’t go. In America, we’d have these incredible seasons and it’s so cold and it snows. There are incredible extremes. And my asthma would be stronger in certain seasons, so I did a lot of my work at home.

The thing is, when you’re away for a long amount of time and then you go back, you’re the odd man out. So I learned to be happy with my own company. I know it made me the person I am today.

The Retiree: When Jennifer Saunders came out recently she said ‘60 is the new 40’ and this does seem to be the case these days. People keep working well into their 60s and 70s and no-one seems to want to retire any more. What do you think of all this?

Hines: I think it’s really good. Back in the day, when you were 60 you were old. But why be old when you’re not? So if you can still do at 60 what you were doing at 35, why not?

To find out more about the next Cruise N Groove, featuring Marcia Hines, KC and the Sunshine Band and Bony M, take a look at this video here.

Or to check out the dates for Marcia’s disco musical, Velvet, check it out here.

And before Christmas, if you want to see Marcia and her band performing Disco Inferno around NSW before Christmas, these are the dates and locations here.

Marcia HInes Singing

About the author

Alana Lowes

Add Comment

Click here to post a comment