The Bunker Cartoon Gallery will be hosting the Women on the World International Cartoon Competition to coincide with International Women’s Day on March 8. We catch up with the event’s special guest, Denise Gold.
Denise, you grew up in the Coalfields of the Hunter Valley. What inspired you to head for the city lights and join the showbiz industry?
It was the bright city lights of Newcastle Showground that lured me like a moth to a flame for the 1985 Miss Newcastle Showgirl competition! I will never forget being strapped to the back of that Holden ute, 2 occy straps keeping me firmly within the tray, waving at the little people and baby pigs as we passed the animal enclosure … golden memories! I was such a hit, nearly snagging the crown and being named Runner Up … that interest just spread like wildfire. Local newsreader, Ray Dineen, was a judge that day and said I had ‘huge things in front of me’, and I really have had a fabulous glamorous, rich life in the arts – performing at Mardi Gras, the Sydney Fringe Festival, Tamworth Country Music Fest, numerous glittering art gallery affairs with Ben Quilty, Annie Liebovitz, Brett Whitely and many more! I’ve also been blessed to perform at many other amazing events like Probus, VIEW Clubs and Rotary. I thank God every day that fate steered me down Hunter Street and into the Mattara Festival of Newcastle that year (where I waved like the Queen with Big Dog).
These days you’re a regular performer across the country. Tell us about your show.
I sing, I dance, I have absolutely no self monitoring! My mission statement is ‘to bring back the songs you’ve tried VERY hard to forget’! You’ll enjoy torch songs, Jazz numbers, Country love-gone-wrong tales, operatic arias and the music they play in heaven – DISCO! I also make good use of my cordless microphone and visit the audience.
What can we expect from you when you attend the Women on the World event at the Bunker Cartoon Gallery in Coffs Harbour?
Well, what CAN’T you expect is more like it! What can I say? I’ve been awarded the ultimate ‘Style and Beauty Queen of Newcastle’ for ten years running! The Denise Gold Institute just gives and gives and gives, running competitions like this! You can be assured you will laugh, you will need strong pelvic floor muscles (don’t say I didn’t warn you!) and quite frankly, you will be jealous of my dazzling outfits and Samoan size 8 figure.
Why was it important for you to be involved in this particular event?
I LOVE doing International Women’s Day events and this one got my motor running, because it is set in the amazing Bunker Gallery and ART is about my second favourite thing in the whole world, after staring in the mirror … oh hang on…
Anyway, I love art, and this just appealed to me because all the other gigs that I could have taken that day didn’t involve a road trip and the possibility of me scoring a caricature of myself! They’re also paying me, which is lovely … did I mention I can’t wait to see the BIG BANANA?