Actor and singer Tim Campbell is due to release his debut album in April. Campbell is best known for his work on Home and Away and, most recently, House Husbands, where he played Tom Parker, the working husband of Gyton Grantley’s character, Kane. Kane and Tom marked the first time that an Australian drama has featured a gay couple raising a child. However, last month it was announced that Campbell’s character has been written out of the Nine drama and will not return for the third season. I caught up with the 38-year-old to chat about his album, the shock announcement of his departure from the show and his off-air relationship with singer Anthony Callea.
What are you up to at the moment?
Well I’ve just lost 10 bucks at the races, thanks to your tip! [Laughs] This is my first time to the Magic Millions Carnival [on the Gold Coast] and I’m loving it. Besides that, I’m actually right in the middle of recording a new album, which is High School Disco. Basically it is ’70s and ’80s songs.
Congratulations on your debut album.
Thanks. It’s funny because I’ve been asked to record an album before and I always thought that I’ve been so busy hosting shows, acting and everything else in between. But since I hosted the show The Singing Bee, I put a band together. I’ve been doing corporate shows around the country and this is the first time that I’ve made an album, and I’m doing a tour as well.
What was the inspiration behind doing a disco album?
It’s quite funny – when I do perform with my band, the [disco songs] never fail. They could be the richest people in Australia and by the time it gets to the end of the night everyone is a bogan and gets into [those songs]. Their inhibitions go out the door and everyone goes back to their high school days. So I’m sure there will be musical critics who will hate it, but this album is not for them. It’s for people who love those classic melodies from back in our day.
Do you prefer singing or acting?
Well, I haven’t had to choose, thankfully. My background is TV drama. I started singing – like how some actors waiter in between jobs – I was doing theatre restaurants, singing and cover bands in pubs. And probably in the past few years – except for House Husbands – I’ve probably sung more than I’ve acted. It just goes in waves. I put ”entertainer” on the passport!
Many fans were disappointed to hear you had left House Husbands. What happened?
Yes, that was a weird decision, to be honest. For months I was told we were all going ahead and then I got a phone call saying, “we decided not to bring your character back” … I don’t know, that’s television. I don’t want to sound like a bitter actor but the only thing I was disappointed with was that as an entertainer, I hate to disappoint an audience. And I know the show will be great [without me] but the audience love these four couples and they love these families. I just thought why not see [Tom and Kane] break up on television, rather than just [Tom] disappear. But I’m just the actor.
What happens to your character?
I don’t know, I’m not the writer. He might die, I don’t know. And I don’t want to be bitter. I love the show but it’s a weird decision from people in suits who get paid lots of money. I just loved having a gay couple on the show, they were such a good couple. What I loved about the characters was that they weren’t written as a cliche gay couple; you could substitute their dialogue as a heterosexual couple and the characters would work and I love that. People see mardi gras and they see Modern Family, which is great, but this was another point of view for people who don’t have many gay people in their life. The way they wrote it was a really good representation.
How long have you and your partner, Anthony, been together now?
Six years, which is 30 years in gay years! [Laughs] It’s a great relationship; we are lucky we get each other.
Do you plan to go down the same path as your character on House Husbands and raise children together?
Never say never but it’s not really in the foreseeable future. At the moment Anthony and I are pretty happy and I’m not getting clucky.
Do you hope that one day Australian laws allow you and Anthony to get married?
Of course it should [be legal in Australia], but I don’t know if it’s for us. Again, I would never say no, but if the law changed tomorrow I don’t think we would rush to be married; I’m not sure if we particularly want that or need that in our relationship. But I absolutely think it should be legal and it will be … it will happen. And to be completely honest – and I know people will hate me for saying this – that is one important issue. But there are a lot of important issues in society that are beyond homosexuals. So it gets a bit of press and I think other issues need press too.
Will you step back into musical theatre again?
Absolutely, I love it. I did Shout and that was great because it had a rock’n’roll vibe to it. They asked me to audition for Les Miserables – that’s a great musical but it’s not me, I’m not into that classical musical thing, I like to do more Rocky Horror or that sort of stuff. As an actor and singer, I will definitely do musicals again because you can blend two great things together.
WE WENT TO The Moet & Chandon VIP Marquee at the Magic Millions Raceday, Gold Coast.
WE ATE A selection of canapes by ARIA, menu designed by Matt Moran.
WE DRANK Sparkling water and Moet & Chandon.
TIM WORE A Calvin Klein suit.