Did you want to challenge preconceptions about you? You turned up in a beautiful pastel suit, you’re groomed, you look fabulous…some viewers might not think you’ll do all the challenges?
I think naturally in life and personally I like to challenge people’s ideas around me. I knew I wanted to that. I know that I’m not a glamazon 24/7, not at all. Most of the time, I’m at home in my sweats and having a glass of wine watching the show with my mum. That’s me most of the time. I’m in sweats or at the beach. I love getting dolled up. I love having my hair done and make up but it’s not me 24/7 it’s a very small section of my life and that’s what people have seen so far of me but it’s really nice how this show captures all the elements of your personality.
You’ve done AGT, The Voice, how does this show compare?
It’s the hardest by far…
But you’ve had your friend Abbie to get you through?
Yes! We didn’t know each other but we bonded straight away. We’re close in age and we speak the same language. Getting to know her here, I soon found out she’s just a sweetheart, she’s educated, she’s progressive, she’s outspoken and I think that really bonded us because we’re all about the same attitudes – in fact we bonded because she’s outspoken on issues I care about but she’s got more balls than me. I think she’s an absolute sweetheart.
You’ve both had some horrible trolling online too..
Yes, and unfortunately it’s something we can bond over. You can talk to your friends about it and they’re there for you but they can’t understand it or fully connect on it. With Abbie, she’s had the worst experiences with trolls, paps, the lot. It’s nice to connect with someone who gets where you’re coming from.
You’re smashing any idea that Gen Y’s or millennials don’t want to work because you and Abbie will have a go at anything on the show..
Yes, it’s really encouraging that the media attention isn’t just picking up on the crazy statements, people are focusing as well on the beauty in the generation, that we are willing to work , there are so many conversations we had in there that highlighted that generation gap but that we came to hear each other’s point of view, like conversations with Abbie and I and Dipper for example…
Did those conversations get more heated than what we saw on screen or did you just talk the issues out?
It’s like a conversation around the dinner table between different generations in a family and I know family or friends where discussions would get a lot more hectic that our conversations in camp! I think how Abbie handled that discussion with Dipper was really great but we didn’t see her go down to the pool in tears. I only saw that on screen. I didn’t know she was crying so watching that was hard. But when she came back they talked it out and that is the definition of progressive – people hearing each other out rather than screaming at each other. Who knew we could be functional human beings!
Who else did you bond with?
I don’t think it’s showing as much but I got on so well with Jess. Her Paulini and Abbie were and are my ride or dies. From that moment when Jess and Paulini arrived, we were bonded, but then I met Abbie and I knew I’d be OK in there. I really hope they show more of my interactions with Jess because she was like my mum and sister rolled into one in there and she helped me keep it all together too.
Did you struggle at all – what made you cry in there?
I’m not much of a crier but I did have a cry in there. I don’t cry much when there are cameras around because in the past, even when I’ve wanted to cry like when I was on The Voice singing certain songs I think I have a thing about crying on cameras. I’ve been around them since I was 14 and I’ve had to keep up this face, this mask and I feel like I’ve become emotionally cut off in a a lot of ways, when cameras are around. But you can’t see them in the jungle so you really just have no option but to be yourself and open up. I did have a crying moment with Jess and I really hope they show it.
What sparked that?
It started off about me missing home and then talking about my relationship with my mum and our dynamic growing up and me being in the spotlight from really young. I think I surprised myself by what I was crying about.
You’re getting so much love online since you went into the jungle. Have you been dipping in to that and how does it feel after the trolling you’ve experienced?
I look at my social channels and it’s been nothing but love there, or the majority has. But when you’ve been through times where the majority of comments are hate this feels amazing. I love that people are getting to see me for me and I haven’t really ever had the opportunity before.
Who knew this would be the show where we finally get to see the whole Jack?
What’s next for you?
I’m so grateful for this I'm A Celeb op, there’s some projects coming up and I’m working on music. 2020 was a huge year of reflection for me and being in the jungle was hugely reflective for me, I think there will be a few songs out of that.
Have you got your love of music back?
Yes, The Voice for me was a beautiful experience because I just got to sing. Because I’d won AGT there was no pressure for me or desire for me to be like “I must win The Voice” – so I just got to sing. So it reignited my love of singing.
Abbie’s moving to Sydney, what will you get up to?
I’m so excited. We’ve already picked out spots for dinner, where we’re going to go, I can’t wait.
Will we see you sing?
There’s a moment around the campfire, it’s a beautiful moment when everyone’s a bit down and drained and Paulini and I sing and….there will be a singing moment.
For more, pick up the latest issue of WHO. Out now!