Yes, I have been awarded the Order of Australia Medal for Services to the Arts in the Australia Day honours list. I can now add OAM after my name – and I will: with pride.
I was completely overwhelmed when I got the news. It came as such surprise. I never considered myself a candidate for civic honours.
I used to joke every June and January when the honours list came out: “They’ve missed me again.” This time I received an email from GG’s office bringing me the good news. Would I accept the honour? Yes please. Then came confirmation and the word that I had to keep it secret for a couple of months, which was difficult. I don’t get the medal yet, that comes later at the Government House investiture. It is a beautiful piece of work though. I will be honoured to wear it.
As a journalist I knew that when the list came out newspapers would scan it and interview local recipients. That was tough for me because my wife and I went on 12-night cruise that ended the day before Australia Day. I was uncontactable for the window of opportunity before Australia Day.
Why me? I honestly don’t know. I have written books and plays, been showbiz journo for many, many years. I still am a theatre critic on www.absolutetheatre.com.au and run an Instagram page scott_media.
I’ve done some acting in film, TV and stage, but nothing spectacular. I have also been the Mayor of Gosh for the past eight years, a group of theatrical veterans who lunch once a month and listen to fellow thespian guest speakers. We give an annual cash award to a deserving showbiz type who has shown theatrical excellence during the year and also make a regular donation to the Actors and Entertainers’ Benevolent Fund.
For me it’s all been fun; I love being involved with showbiz, always have, so I count the award as an added bonus and I sincerely hope that all the other award recipients have had as much enjoyment out of earning he honour as I have.
Eric Scott, OAM!