Justine Clarke Interview + DVD Giveaway!

If you could trade places with anyone for a day, who would you choose?  For me, it would be Justine Clarke.  Oh to be a Playschool presenter – singing to, reading for, and entertaining children around the country!  While I might not ever be on Playschool, I was delighted to have the opportunity to interview Justine about her latest album Great Big World.  (You can read my review of the album here, and check out the title track below if you haven’t seen it already.  Please note that if you are still using IE the video may not play…)

Cath - Congratulations on another wonderful album that kids (and their parents) are sure to fall in love with. Which is your favourite track?

Justine - It changes but at the moment it’s My Shadow and Me. I love the arrangement and the sentiment of the song – that you can always make your own fun. I loved dancing with my shadow when I was a child. I adore that jazz feel that Peter Dasent (composer) captures so stylishly.

Cath - Do you sing your songs at home with your own children, or does it feel like work?

Justine - I do find myself humming them occasionally. My kids are getting beyond the songs age wise so they like to make up their own words to them now which can be pretty funny. Singing never feels like work. I love what I do.

Cath - You give so much to families around Australia. How do you make sure there is still enough of you for your own family?!

Justine - That is something I have to keep in check. We try to keep one day of the weekend to being at home as a family and I tour only once in the year and try to bring them along when it isn’t too disruptive for them.

Cath - Peter Dasent and Arthur Baysting just keep coming up with brilliant melodies and lyrics, and again you have collaborated with them on a few songs. How do you go about writing songs together?

Justine - Over the years the process has changed. At first Peter and Arthur had so many brilliant songs already written that it was just a matter of tweaking them before we recorded them. Peter had half-written a song (Scoot On My Scooter) which he was about to give up on until I resurrected it, I liked the idea of an action song that had a good rock feel with a chorus (‘Do it again, do it again’) that is so simple but so true. Now, Arthur and I communicate via Skype and have ideas we are working on together from scratch. There’s one we are trying to write together at the moment called Silver Trails, it’s about a snail who has to leave home. It’s tricky, I hope it stays in the mix.

Cath - I promised my four year old daughter she could ask a question (to which she promptly replied, “Dear Justine. Can you come over for a play?”) We’ll go with her second attempt! “Dear Justine. My favourite song is Happy Dog. Do you have a dog?”

Justine - I don’t have a dog. I’d love one though. Until then, I’ll just pretend to be one – a happy dog!

*  *  *  *  *

If you missed out on winning Justine’s CD a couple of months ago, thanks to my friends at Roadshow I have FOUR copies of the new Great Big World DVD to give away to SquiggleMum readers!  Just leave a comment below either sharing a favourite Justine Clarke song (from any of her three albums) or one thing you like about Justine.  One entry per person please, Aussie residents only, winners will be drawn at random 8pm Sunday 1 August, Qld time.

Tickets are still on sale for the upcoming Great Big World Tour too.  You can find tour dates and details here. We’ve already bought our tickets as we didn’t want to miss out!  Don’t worry – if Justine invites me backstage I’ll be sure to post photos for you all to see…



Congratulations to the winners (contacted by email):

  • Gayle
  • Michele
  • Jude
  • Jane

60 thoughts on “Justine Clarke Interview + DVD Giveaway!

  1. We LOVE “I like to sing!” Justine is great! My girls and I love to watch her/listen to her sing… she is so animated! and genuine! Love her!

  2. I’m yet to experience the ‘solo’ work of Justine. My daughter and I fell in love with her on Play School but today when we were watching ABC2, ‘Great Big World’ came on and my daughter and I stopped in our tracks. I don’t know who was more mesmerised, myself or my daughter! It’s such an original, lovely song. My sister and her children always rave about Justine…it’s their favourite ‘driving’ music. Judging by the reaction my daughter and I both had, I can tell we’re going to become obsessed!

  3. We LOVE Justine. We are heading to the concert on 20 August and can’t wait.

    We love the ‘Dancing Face’ song from Songs to Make You Smile. Emily does all the actions and love to make a dancing face when we are driving in the car.

  4. my four year old found it hard to choose just one favourite but settled on ‘everybody roar like a dinosaur’ and I love to sing.
    We would love her new DVD, we have her first two on CD but the action of a DVD would be great, fingers crossed!!

  5. We love our Justine CDs and we’re looking forward to seeing if our Grammy made it into the video for “My Granny Loves to Laugh”… Dancing Face and Off to the Library are our favourite songs to sing together :)

  6. My Granny loves to laugh is one of my fav’s & my little girls love it too…..as their Granny does love to laugh!!! all the songs have such special sentiment & I fall in love with every one I hear – just amazing :)
    .-= Sarah SB´s last blog ..lOVE it =-.

  7. She is a talented actress and someone that the kids will look up to as a favourite singer. She has been a favourite actress of mine since Home & away and now my 4yr old daughter loves watching her on play school & her dvd. Great work Justine!!

  8. We love Justine. Our favourite song at the moment is “Dancing Face”. We love to do all the silly actions together.

  9. Dancing Pants is our current favourite Justine Clarke song. It’s a scream to see my two girlies dance and sing as they watch the DVD. Justine sings cleverly written songs and the artwork and stlye of each DVD is amazing. Can’t wait for the concert!
    .-= Amanda – Busy Brissy Mum´s last blog ..We Love Pre-loved! =-.

  10. So many Justine songs, its now hard to choose one favourite. We are loving the GBW CD right now so the DVD would be awesome. Our favourites from this CD are Happy Dog, CLimbing up the Rainbow and Great Big World … but all 3 CDs are great. I picked up Michaela from kindy today and they had played one of her CDs at rest time … Michaela was thrilled and I don’t think much sleeping went on as they were all singing along. Bring on the concert next month … should be great!

  11. I can’t believe I didn’t know about Justine Clarke until we moved to Australia, I am so relieved that my children are the perfect age. Honestly, she is the only music that I can tolerate and ENJOY for children and of course my girls love her! We all sing along as loudly as we can: WATERMELON, WATERMELON!

  12. love the dog question. Would have to be Watermelon for us too, but real Justine fave would be a little segment of OLD playschool where she does a story about a boy called Conrad that goes to visit his nanna and she makes little footprints and drawings/paintings as she goes along with the story.

    On high rotation

  13. I can’t believe you got to meet Justine…wow…lucky! We have been to all her concerts and have the tickets for two shows this time around! Love, love, love her! Favourite song would have to be ‘song to make you smile’ – simply beautiful!

  14. Justine is one of the most natural presenters and captivating on screen. She seems to be able to connect directly to the audience big and little and she makes everything seem so effortless. Watching old Play School Ep’s where she was quite heavily pregnant, jumping around smiling and singing gave me an even higher respect for her. She radiates happiness!

  15. We have but one Justine DVD,(I Like To Sing) and it’s pretty much worn out! A great favorite in our family, we as parents love it, my 9 year old loves it, as does the 5 year old and the 2 year old twins. Amazing to find something they all like. Our favorite song is definitely `The Dancing Chicken’. Such a cool rhythm and great dance moves. :) Great interview Cath, good,interesting questions. xxoo

  16. I love, you love watermelon!

    Not only are her songs fantastic but the graphics in the film clips captivate me every time. The first time I saw one I was instantly taken back to my childhood when there was a short time-filler on the ABC between shows with graphics just like that, set to the song ‘Butterfly Ball’. It’s something I will never forget and am so happy to be fondly reminded of it through Justine’s work.

    Oh, and the kids love her too :)

  17. Okay, it’s settled. I’m moving to Australia! Our children’s TV programming is so LAME compared to this. Thank you for opening my eyes to her.

    I’ve mentioned this to several of my Aussie friends, but you guys must be doing something right when it comes to raising your girls because they grow into such amazing women!
    .-= Teacher Tom´s last blog ..Butterfly Tattoos =-.

  18. Lovely interview Cath! Our favourite at the moment is Gumtree Family. My 3 year old loves to guess which animals are being described for each verse.

  19. My daughter loves dancing face :) I love……all of them :) although the Watermelon watermelon i like you like watermelon has been very welcomed in this house -has been transformed to what ever vegtable etc that is going into that nights meal —-you will often walk into our kitchen to find my 3.5yr old daughter Indiana and myself happily chopping vegies and singing away …………..brussle sprouts brustle sprouts …….;)

  20. My girls LOVE Justine and her music is easy on my ears too. Important when you listen to it everyday severals times a day. We are loving “my shadow and me” too.

  21. I like Justine – lala la la la
    I like Justine – lala la la la
    I love her, I love her
    I really really do
    I like Justine – lala la la la

    Just bought tickets today for her Adelaide concert on August 2nd which will be the best way to celebrate my little ones third birthday!

  22. Justine captures the imagination of all little kids that love to sing and dance! When she sings on the screen it feels like she is in the lounge room with us!!
    “I like to sing” and the Watermelon song are loved in our house! :)
    .-= Tina´s last blog ..We Play – Silly Playdough Critters =-.

  23. My 2 year old boy loves ‘Everybody roar like a dinosaur’ and we also love Justine on Play School – she’s such a natural at connecting with the kids

  24. My 2-year-old has been enjoying Justine’s music videos following Playschool in the afternoons. His favourite song at the moment is “Watermelon”.

  25. In my house our fav Justine song is “I like to sing”:) I love that Justine’s albums are something that my 13 year old right down to my 2 year old can listen to and enjoy.

  26. WE JUST LOVE “I LIKE TO SING”! Love it love it love it! AND watermelon is another favourite. I have only just discovered Justine’s music late last year and we are now firm fans, so much so we are going to her concert soon and CAN’T WAIT! She is our absolute favourite presenter on playschool too!

  27. We like to sing is our favorite – even the bun in the oven wiggles around! Definatly going to see Justine live, am enjoying her perforance in Tangle!

  28. My 3 little boys just love the watermelon song . . . It is a big hit in our house!! It often gets stuck in my head for days and days too.

  29. We love her so much, i like to sing is our fav song. we had her CD’s but played them so much they wore out…. Justine is just awesome, as she is so focused on the kids..

  30. Great interview Cath! I also think my dream job would be as a playschool presenter!!
    We have too many favourite songs to mention them all… but at the moment I think the top 3 are “Gum Tree Family”, “Hippity Hop” and “Dancing Face” All from the “I love to Sing!” album. We start out with the DVD and move on to Cds in the car. My daughter is 2 and loves to copy the actions and dance around, so when she knows the songs in the car she does the actions and sings the words. It was hilarious the first time I saw her ‘dancing’ to “Dancing Face” in my rear view mirror.

  31. Our favourite Justine song is “I like to sing”. I didn’t think that my 3 yr old paid much attention to the play school people but when Justine was on GNW last night, Annabelle happened to get up to get a drink and got so excited and told me she was from Play School :)
    .-= Tina´s last blog ..Flavour Savour Searing Slow Cooker – a review =-.

  32. I love Justine!( yes i watch way too much playschool! ) yep she is my favorite person on the old playschool dvd’s. Along with my 11mth old daughter of course!, who lovesssssss playschool – she also likes justine and intently watches her when she is on. I have bought a lot of the playschool dvds because of Justine!!!! Our favorite song is ‘I like to sing’.
    .-= DanniiBeauty´s last blog ..What inspires you =-.

  33. We LOVE Justine – she is so engaging and always looks like she really enjoys what she’s doing. My dinosaur loving boy can’t go past “Dinosaur Roar” as his favourite.

  34. Justine..Thanks for producing such beautiful music for my whole family to sing :) Its simply gorgeous to hear my lovely 3yr old singing “how many stars”…It just melts my heart ♥ I find myself driving along with no kids in the car singing along with the CD too :) Love it!!
    Can’t wait for August 20- 10am concert YAY :) We Love you Justine xxx

  35. My son (4yrs) loves all of Justine Clarke’s music and I love to sing along as well. We saw Justine in 2008 and look forward to her next concert next month in Nambour. Just bought the new CD and our favourites are Great Big World, Climbing up the Rainbow and Scoot on my Scooter. Now if I could just get the words out of my head so I can go to sleep at night. Thanks Justine and keep on smiling and doing what you do best, singing and entertaining our children.

  36. I love Justine’s song “I like to Sing” it’s the first one i heard as well as viewing the video before and after some eps of Playschool, i really like the simpliticy of it.

  37. Great interview Cath! Justine is my favourite playschool presenter because she is fun, passionate and a great singer. My 16 month old also loves seeing Justine on playschool as well. However whenever she hears “dancing pants” she stops what she is doing and starts dancing. It is a delight to watch her dance and always makes me laugh. We would love to own her latest cd!

  38. What song doesnt my son like he loves watermelon, dinosaur roar and i like to sing. For us the huge thing is he is learning the word to them and singing away, it i the cutest thing and a moment we never thought we would see.

  39. I love you love watermelon…..

    Heheheh that song always gets me going!

    She is such a genuine person and has done a great job!

  40. My girls love Justine.
    The song ‘Dancing Face’ always gets a giggle and a smile.
    Also, I love Dancing Chicken. If you asked, I would tell you that I played her music for the kids though! :)

  41. We love ‘ I like to sing’. When the kids are watching Play School and Justice is on , my kids say” Mummy, your girl is on!!”
    She definately brings a smile to my day.

  42. Justine seems to be so ‘normal’ she isn’t a made up character in a ‘cookie cutter’ children’s entertainment group! My kids love how fun and imaginative all her songs are!!
    We have our tickets booked for the up coming tour :) yay!!

  43. We love Justine – have done for years! Neo’s favourite thing in the world is Watermelon, and the song is also his favourite thing to sing!

    “I like to sing” is Zali’s favourite, and mine too, even I find myself singing it! :)

  44. My daughter loves ‘Dancing Face’ the most, and it gets so many giggles out of her. Her second favourite is ‘Doin’ It’, which was on heavy rotation in the baby room at daycare. Love your work Justine! :)

  45. We love Justine’s natural ‘fun-ness’ in our house – a huge hit with both my girls (and me!).

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