Interview: Betoota Advocate‘s Clancy Overell “We really want to do an Israel Folau The Musical”

It’s only been a week since Aussie satire newspaper The Betoota Advocate launched their second book, How Good’s Australia, and the team are already about to restock their copies – which can be bought through the website, as editor Clancy Overell has been quick to remind me.

More than just a stocking filler for the Christmas – or, as Overall says, the holiday season, if we must be politically correct – period, How Good’s Australia is a look back at our nation’s finest moments. And, with 2020 on the horizon, it’s certainly a timely release.

Oversell says that this book will preserve history, unlike their former which was much like a Lonely Planet guide for school leavers and backpackers.

“Through The Betoota Advocate lens, as we reach the end of the decade it’s about where we are at as a country… dissecting what we think is a very positive time in Australia.

“We’ve got a media cycle which has adapted well to the 24 hour phenomenon of social media and news. We’ve got a nation who have an opportunity to elect their own prime minister which is a rare thing nowadays. We’ve got this incredible leader, Scott Morrison, who has just the skillset we need to achieve economical and environmental stability.”

“As well as some of the most amazing minds in Canberra. We’ve got an Australian cricket side who no longer have to scrape sandpaper across their balls in matches. It’s just really a positive time.”

2020 seems to be on everyone’s mind. When asked about their #goals for 2020 that they’d like to share, Overell seemed excited to get into the music biz: “We really want to do an ‘Israel Folau The Musical’ or perhaps ‘Izzy, The Musical’. I think that would really be great fun. I think we’d be able to tell that story very accurately through an incredibly camp musical number.”

The Betoota Advocate‘s optimism and savvy prowess to find opportunities where other print publications and content houses have gone into receivership probably stems from their roots. Overell remembers back in 2014: “We were always a print newspaper serving a small community. We had our circulation and we had our printing press and that was it. Then in 2014, we had a young millennial working for us as an unpaid intern. She insisted we start a Facebook and a Twitter page which we thought was ridiculous. But we took a chance on her and before her internship wrapped up she was able to set us up a Facebook page and we were able to reach a wider audience. She was right, sometimes when you do listen to millennials they sometimes offer up answers. And now we’ve realised there’s different ways to tell stories. And maybe this book is one of those. Maybe a musical in the future?”

While we can only hope that a musical will be on the cards for The Betoota Advocate in the future, it seems there will be little to no singing for the 2019 tour for How Good’s Australia.

Taking a leaf from Betoota‘s book, this journalist remains hopeful that Izzy, The Musical will come to her hometown soon. In the mean time, you can get tickets to The Betoota Advocate Book Tour for How Good’s Australia in the links below.

Sat 7th December @ The Outpost, Fortitude Valley QLD – Tickets
Tue 10th/Weds 11th December @ The Sydney Opera House, Sydney NSW – Tickets
Fri 13th/Sat 14th December @ Alex Theatre St. Kilda, St. Kilda VIC – Tickets