Stage Name 'Gael Phillip' aka my fatherI was born to parents who grew up in wartime London and survived. My father’s first love was acting with the Renegades Theatre and reciting Shakespeare; my mother cut a fine figure with a gypsy knife and circus past.

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My childhood was drawn amongst the wildscape of the Norfolk Broads, in an idyllic rural village, not unlike Narnia.

I learnt to swim the world’s oceans aboard a fine cruiser before being dumped into the hot empty city of Sydney.

Think Mad Men without the irony.


I morphed into a young woman as my friends formed a garage band and became INXS, their strange beats thumping on hot terrace tiles, under our feet.

I yearned for visitings from Mr Bowie, Roxy Music and Blondie – (all came true) and asked God if I could please have hair like Jerry Hall.

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I observed the boardroom tips and media smiles of Margaux Hemingway and passed innocently through the underworld of Sydney’s poets and dead men.

And then back to London where I draped myself in fur and velvet, for Jewish fashionistas and purveyors of silk.

I burnt an Italian heart, in trade for an English lesson and a few puffs of something illicit.

Backward and forwards I went England, Europe, Australia, England, Europe, Australia.

I watched Siouxsie, the Sex Pistols and Adam Ant at the Marquee and walked to Marble Arch in the snow, in my sandals – I never listen.

Ultimately, a corporate gypsy for too many years with a shoebox of burning revelations and aesthetics under the bed.

Too many loves, too many lovers, too much of everything. Grief and sorrow.

Then a new bloom appeared on the stem of my life. A drumbeat called, maybe too late, maybe not?

There it was, cracked between London’s mysteries and the sodden green jewels of the English countryside – the power I had known all along – the power of story, the recognition of wisdom.

I nod to myself –  that is what I am and always have been…a seeker, a storyteller and a woman on The Heroine’s Journey.