After bursting onto the Australian music scene back in 2008, two-time ARIA Award winning talent, Megan Washington is back with a new sound that is still uniquely her own.

As part of this years’ Brisbane Festival, Megan Washington and Queensland Symphony Orchestra lead by John Foreman will come together for one night only, performing brand new songs from her forthcoming album and a selection of her favourites from her previous three.

We chat with Megan about the evolving sound of her forthcoming album and what keeps her sane.

How would you describe your upcoming album compared to your previous album, There There?
It’s slower, sadder. Romantically melancholy. On this record I wrote about sad love. I was thinking a bit of Roy Orbison. Having said that, it’s very digital and glitchy.

What has inspired the new direction of your sound?
This time, I wanted to make an album that would translate differently live. I often find my shows are such a big sing because the way that I naturally write is quite dense; so with this record I tried to write more sparsely, effectively to give myself more space on stage.

Can audiences expect to get a taste of the new album at your performance?
They won’t just get a taste; they’ll get a whole meal! For this Brisbane Festival show I will be performing my new album in full with Queensland Symphony Orchestra lead by John Foreman. I’ve been a fan of John’s ever since I first saw him as musical director on Australian Idol. Obviously since then I’ve come to fully understand the length and breadth of his musicianship. This is our first time working together.

How would you describe the experience of performing a show back by a live orchestra?
Well, I mean, it’s some kind of dream to have your music realized in such an extravagant way! I tend to make things up as I go in my live shows, changing the set list spontaneously, doing solo songs when I feel the urge. Obviously it’s a much tighter ship when working with such a large ensemble.

Is there anything you’re looking forward to checking out at Brisbane Festival?
I love comedy, so I’m really looking forward to Zoe Coombs-Marr (seriously go see her, you’ll hurt yourself laughing) and I recently discovered Demi Lardner while I was watching stand up clips on YouTube. Musically I’m really jazzed about seeing Ngaiire – her live shows are always so creative and inspiring.

How would you describe your musical journey so far?
Storied. It’s been a strong few years, but I’ve learned that I just have to keep working, keep writing and touring. It’s the only thing that keeps me sane.

Are there currently any exciting projects in the Washington works?
Plenty! I’m working on some new projects, including an opera which I am very excited about.

What is your favourite Brissie spot to unwind?
Sunset Park on monoplane street in Bardon. It’s a dog park. It’s really good.

What can’t you live without?
My husband, Nick, and our Great Dane, Friday. And ginger beer.

Megan Washington and her band will perform songs from her forthcoming album with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra conducted by John Foreman as part of Brisbane Festival on Thur 28 Sep.

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