Time Out Melbourne

From game show host, to talent show judge, to musical star, Todd McKenney has showbiz in his blood and twinkle in his toes

People’s perception of me on Dancing With the Stars is everything from “idiot” to “moron” I suspect.
I try to be as honest as I can and always try to give something positive as well as tough love. It doesn’t always happen though. I try to be the voice of the audience watching at home.

I keep myself in shape.
I work out with a personal trainer about four times a week and also by dancing in Annie the Musical.

My start in showbiz was a penguin called Percy.
It was for Channel 7 in Perth. Percy was Fat Cat’s best friend and we worked on a kids show called The Early Bird Show. It started at 7am in the morning during school holidays. I loved it!

My relationship with the media is important to me.
We all need to work together. I need to publicise the shows I am working on and I always try to be entertaining at the same time. I’m not always thrilled if I get papped, especially if I am with my five-year-old daughter Charlotte.

The highlight of my career has been surviving it for so long!
The Boy From Oz was an incredible experience for me. It still is. I never tire of singing Peter Allen’s songs and talking about him and his life. I also love the audiences that I perform for. Quite often there is a better show going on in the auditorium than the one on stage.

I’m driven by showing off.
I am not particularly ambitious but I really care about doing my best work and giving the audience the best time I can. I never coast through a show. Ever.

My long connection to Peter Allen has taught me that the most important thing on stage is to be honest.
Audiences will let you get away with anything as long as you are not faking it. He never faked it. I learned to let the audience in. No private jokes… share everything with the audience. And people remember a good laugh. Make 'em laugh.

I appreciate the awards I've won only as a reminder of really good times in my life.
You tend not to get awards when you are in a ‘turkey’!

A popular misconception about me is that I am talented.
I’m really a fraud and I’m just waiting to be outed as one but until then I’m going to keep trying to get away with it!

Todd is starring as Rooster in Annie at the Regent Theatre at July 8. Book now for tickets to Songs and Stories of Peter Allen, his starring role this December 1 at The Palms at Crown. $70-$150.

First published on . Updated on .

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