Dancing to beat of his own drum

Lockhart Brownlie opposite the Princess Theatre, where his dancing career started. Picture: SCOTT GELSTON
Lockhart Brownlie opposite the Princess Theatre, where his dancing career started. Picture: SCOTT GELSTON

LOCKHART Brownlie is living the life most 23-year-olds could only dream of - and next year it's set to skyrocket.

The Launceston-born dancer has made a name for himself as one of four male back-up dancers for pop sensation Katy Perry.


He has also spent the past year dancing for Taylor Swift, after being a regular on hit US television shows Glee  and True Blood  in 2012 and being a featured dancer in the 2008 Australian production of Wicked .

But Brownlie - or just Locky to his friends - has not let the fame get to him and has taken a week off from his crazy schedule to relax with friends and family back home in Tasmania and give young dancers tips to help make it to the big time. Brownlie arrived in Launceston on Wednesday, just days after wrapping up Katy Perry's Prism Promo Tour for Christmas.

``I've been very busy,'' the cool and calm former St Patrick's and Newstead College student said.

``We've just done three shows in Europe in three days.

``We did one for the X-Factor  finale in London, one in Berlin for The Voice  and one in Cannes.''

Then it was straight to Los Angeles and back to Australia.

Yet, when Brownlie was back home this time last year, he didn't know he would be doing a second international tour with the world's best selling female artist.

He left Tasmania for the US for what he thought would be a final concert with Perry to wrap up the Part of Me  3D movie and an audition to be a back-up dancer for Taylor Swift on her Red Tour.

The audition scored him and two of Perry's other dancers a spot on the Red tour.

``I was with Taylor for the first six months,'' Brownlie said.

``It was a great experience and she's a great person to work with, but then Katy contacted us.''

Perry contacted her three former dancers to say she was releasing another album (Prism ) and wanted them to join her on a second world tour.

Brownlie spent 10 months in 2011 touring with Perry for her California Dreams world tour.

``Obviously we were with Katy for 2 1/2 years, she's like family to us, so we were, like, `absolutely','' Brownlie said.

``We weren't really dancing in Taylor's tour anyway so I had got a little bored and I really wanted to do a promo tour.''

Working with two different artist was interesting for Brownlie.

``The experiences were completely different,'' he said.

``Taylor is very untouchable.

``When we did see her, we had so much fun with her, but she's a lot more protected than Katy.

``Katy's 28 now and can do her own thing.

``Her team are so lovely, so we have such a good connection. And this time around she is a lot more in control.''

As part of Perry's promo tour, the crew has taken in numerous countries including Australia, Japan, Tokyo and The Netherlands just in one week.

They will continue the promo tour until the full Prism tour starts in May.

It will start in the UK, move to the US, then Australia at the end of the year (possibly starting in October), before roaring into Europe in 2015.

And apart from just taking to the stage, Brownlie has also got back onto the diving platform this year.

``It's a nice break from dancing,'' Brownlie said.

Brownlie also has to find time almost everyday to go to the gym as image in the world of dancing in LA is everything.

Brownlie will take a masterclass at Jenina's Dance Workshop in Hobart tomorrow between 10am and noon, which is open to anyone for $25.

He will return to LA straight after to perform a private concert with Perry and her team for a child's birthday before dancing in Vegas on New Year's Eve.


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