Perhaps one of the most significant facts I learned about Tina was that her name is in fact Fillipina and she was (and still is) known to her friends and family as Pina. The name Tina was adopted when she started on YTT. Tina grew up in a very normal household in Moonee Ponds in Melbourne, the middle daughter of two hard working Sicillian immigrants. From a young age she loved to sing and entertain and as we know he big break came when she joined the Young Talent Team. Tina speaks fondly of her time on the show and has only kind words to say about host Johnny Young and her fellow team members. I thought this was refreshing in an age where many people like to dish the dirt on former castmates whenever the chance provides itself.
The early years of her adult recording career were not easy ones for Tina and she really paid her dues, working away tirelessly writing and recording songs with only moderate success until her big break came. While she enjoyed much success, Tina also endured heartbreak along the way, with a public and bitter marriage break up and the burnout that many performers suffer due to the overwhelming demands of life in the public eye. Fortunately for Tina she healed and built a new life with her French partner and their son in London and Paris.
I got a really good sense of Tina throughout her story. Through all her success she has remained grounded and very close to her family and friends in Melbourne. Although now living in Paris, she returns home often and reiterates her identity as a proud Australian throughout the book. She also has a good sense of humour and this also shone through as she shared various stories.
Now I Can Dance is well written, it is easy to read and doesn't get bogged down with too much factual information about recording contracts and the like. It is Tina's story, told with honesty and a sense of fun and should inspire those who also seek to live out their own dream of making music on the world stage.