Kate Miller-Heidke performing in the 2019 Eurovision semi-final in Tel Aviv on Tuesday.
Kate Miller-Heidke performing in the 2019 Eurovision semi-final in Tel Aviv on Tuesday. Sebastian Scheiner

Can Kate bring Eurovision gold glory to Central Queensland?

AGENT to the stars and former Gladstone dancer, Michael Montgomery was at the opening of Muriel's Wedding, the musical, when he met Kate Miller-Heidke.

But it wasn't the first time they'd met - there was something niggling at the back of his mind.

"It was the name, Heidke. I asked her 'is your mother's name Jenny and were you born in Gladstone?'", he said.

Yes, the Australian Eurovision sensation was born in Gladstone Hospital on November 16, 1981.

 

Agent to the stars, former Gladstone man Michael Montgomery with Kate Miller-Heidke and her husband Keir Nuttall at the opening of Muriel's Wedding in Sydney.
Agent to the stars, former Gladstone man Michael Montgomery with Kate Miller-Heidke and her husband Keir Nuttall at the opening of Muriel's Wedding in Sydney.

Her parents, Greg Heidke and Jenny Miller, had moved to Gladstone for work and Jenny taught contemporary dance at Patti Gleeson's dance school for several years.

Miss Glesson is Montgomery's mother and he was a teenager when Kate was born.

"I'm not sure how long they lived there for, because I left at 15. But I do remember Jenny was a very inspirational teacher," he said.

He first became aware of Kate Miller-Heidke when he saw her perform with David Wenham in Opera Australia's Jerry Springer.

"It was very, very, out there, a huge hit on Broadway and West End," he said.

"She's an amazing talent, and I always had it in the back of my mind about her name Miller-Heidke."

It wasn't until the Sydney Theatre Company's launch of Muriel's Wedding - Miller-Heidke co-wrote the music and lyrics - that Montgomery had the chance to ask her if she was the baby he remembered.

 

MUM'S GIRL: Kate Miller-Heidke was born in Gladstone in 1981. Pictured here with her mum, former Gladstone dance teacher, Jenny Miller.
MUM'S GIRL: Kate Miller-Heidke was born in Gladstone in 1981. Pictured here with her mum, former Gladstone dance teacher, Jenny Miller.

Montgomery's own talent was obvious as a very young child and after years performing locally and winning countless awards in the Gladstone Eisteddfod, he left home in 1983 to The Australian Ballet School in Melbourne.

His career included dancing for Prince Charles and Princess Diana, London's West End and six years in Paris at the Moulin Rouge and the Lido.

Today he's one of Australia's leading talent agents with Morrissey Management in Sydney.

 

Michael Montgomery (third from left) as guest judge on Dancing With the Stars
Michael Montgomery (third from left) as guest judge on Dancing With the Stars

Eurovision rules stipulate you can't vote for your own country and Montgomery says it's time to garner the support of family and friends in Europe to vote.

Yesterday Australia's Kate Miller-Heidke made it through the first semi-final with her song, Zero Gravity, which she wrote about recovering from depression.

"She's now third favourite. She's right up there, but we have to knock off the Netherlands and Sweden," Montgomery said.

"This is the first time we could actually win it."



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