Activists + > Celebrity Interviews

At only 18 Vanessa Amorosi is one of Australia's hottest new young talents. She's signed with Transistor Records and she's very quickly skyrocketed up the charts with not one but two self-penned hit singles "Have a Look" (which achieved Gold record status) and "Absolutely Everybody" (which has achieved Platinum record status)!!

Vanessa started singing at shopping centres at age 12 and she's never had any formal training. When this young woman belts out a song (she writes all of her own material) it can literally make the hair stand up on the back of your neck! Everyone's got their eye on Vanessa as she's mega-talented with a capital M & T! Both of her parents are singers (cabaret entertainers) and so show business is most definitely in her blood.

Vanessa is also an animal rights activist. I recently rang her and got the low-down on her thoughts on vegetarianism, battery hens and educating children! Vanessa is a really lovely girl, very unaffected and modest.

 

Interview by June Bird, March 2000.

June: Hi Vanessa! My very first question is are you a vegetarian or a vegan?
Vanessa: I'm a vegetarian, but my manager Jack Strom is a vegan and that's what I'm eventually aiming for!
June: Do you find it difficult being a vego? What's the hardest part for you?
Vanessa: Hmm ... probably going to BBQs. There's nothing for me to eat!
June: Why did you decide to go vego?
Vanessa: It just seemed a natural progression I loved animals and also at one stage I went to an abattoir that really clinched it for me!
June: How did you develop an interest in Animal Liberation?
Vanessa: My manager Jack is really into animal rights so I listened to what he had to say and came to my own conclusions.
June: What do your parents think about you being vego?
Vanessa: They're really cool abut it, and my two sisters (16 and 10) are seriously thinking about going vego too.
June: What about when you're touring have you found much decent vegetarian grub around?
Vanessa: Well we usually bring our own! Salad sandwiches and fruit keep us going. We are always going into restaurants and take away shops and asking exactly what ingredients they're using. For instance french fries that are cooked in animal fat etc you just don't know what you're actually eating until you ask and I ask a LOT!
June: What do your friends think about your beliefs?
Vanessa: A lot of people have been supportive and a lot of people laugh at me! Some people think it's totally uncool to be vegetarian and that it's 'macho' to eat animals while others say that I've helped them to see that it's wrong to have animals slaughtered for our plates.
June: What about wearing leather?
Vanessa: No, I don't wear leather and I'm really aware of all products that use animals. My Mum won't wear any leather either.
June: What form of animal cruelty really bugs you the most?
Vanessa: Um ... probably testing on animals that really angers me. Also intensive farming and battery hens I always eat free range eggs for example. And I've just found out about rodeos, about the 'flank strap' aaarrrggghhh ..... that's horrific!
June: What's your personal plans for the future?
Vanessa: I've got BIG plans!! I'm in the process of buying my own farm for one. I live with my parents Joy & Peter, on a 3 acre property at the moment and we've got horses,dogs, geese, guinea pigs, goats, rabbits, cats and pet rats! When I settle into my own place I intend to bring children in to educate them about the care and respect of all animals. That's my dream for the future.
June: You go girl! Good luck Vanessa with everything. You're a big star in Australia already and I feel it in my bones that you're going to crack the big time overseas. Just make sure that you keep voicing your concern for animals!!!
Vanessa: Yup I'll DEFINITELY do that!
Vanessa Amorosi's website: http://www.vanessaamorosi.com/