Hamilton boss hires Barty’s ‘mental coach’ to get cast through lockdown


“Then she got in connection with Ben Crowe, and Ben’s done an amazing job with her, and Ben said ‘let’s tell the world what you want to do, let’s tell the world how you’re going to do it, and let’s live the dream’. And the difference he’s made to her life and her tennis is just incredible.”

Big help: Mental coach Ben Crowe with  Wimbledon winner Ash Barty.

Big help: Mental coach Ben Crowe with Wimbledon winner Ash Barty.Credit:Twitter

No doubt Cassel is hoping for similar results with his own cast and crew, though even Crowe will have difficulty finding a glimmer of hope for Hamilton’s investors, who have sunk millions of dollars into getting the Broadway hit to Sydney.

Cassel has also had to weather the Melbourne lockdowns that created major upheaval for his Harry Potter and the Cursed Child show and hit its box-office takings.

It costs upwards of $750,000 a week to stage shows on the scale of Hamilton and Harry Potter. Cassel says the productions could only be feasible and get a return to his investors if they keep running with full houses, which, given the huge demand both shows have generated was not inconceivable.

However, what capacity will look like once lockdown finishes is unclear, and that is one of Cassel’s biggest fears in the long term, given Hamilton is due to move to Melbourne next March.

Unreal estate

Fake auctions, professional actors pretending to be buyers and attention-seeking socialites clamouring for walk-on roles: it all adds up to Sydney’s newest and guiltiest TV pleasure, Luxe Listings.

In fact, just about the only genuine thing going on in the Sydney real estate horror show on Amazon Prime is the extraordinarily bloated egos on display.

PS’s favourite pocket-sized property prince Gavin Rubinstein, who this column previously revealed was officially “announced” as being “in the building” to rapturous applause from his fellow agents during open houses, is certainly lapping up the attention. So too his nemesis D’Leanne Lewis.

But PS hears all is not what it seems, such as the great Vaucluse auction fiasco of episode four, which has been completely re-enacted with the addition of professional actors, presumably for greater dramatic effect. However, PS suspects a lack of signed release forms could also be in play, thwarting the use of footage from the actual, real-life drama of the auction that did happen.

Prestige agent Michael Pallier even took part in the stunt auction, recreating his jubilation when it sold for $24.6 million to Australian-Chinese millennials.

Eastern suburbs real estate agent Gavin Rubinstein has cultivated a mass following on Instagram.

Eastern suburbs real estate agent Gavin Rubinstein has cultivated a mass following on Instagram.Credit:Instagram

Perhaps the producers might look beyond the Sydney waterfront for next season’s drama.

PS previously reported on the interim AVO police took out on behalf of former NSW minister and National Party vice-president Katrina Hodgkinson against her estranged husband, high-profile Southern Highlands real estate agent Jack Saeck.


Along with the AVO, court records show Saeck, of Berrima, has been charged with intimidating and two counts of destroying or damaging property.

Saeck, who is pleading not guilty, is accused of damaging numerous cups and glassware during a late-night incident last November. A month later he is alleged to have damaged personal items ­including cosmetics belonging to the victim.

Making things even more intriguing is that Hodgkinson and Saeck remain living on the same rural property in separate lodgings.

A hearing is scheduled at Moss Vale Local Court for November 26.

Socialite media

Another week in lockdown and another slew of social media feeds raising eyebrows (or at least those that can still move) across town.

However, PS is bewildered by the seemingly inordinate number of Sydney socialites who have been posting anti-vaxxer messages on Instagram and Facebook, whining about their right not to inject anything “foreign” into their bodies, and yet are only too happy to have their heads pumped full of Botox and fillers. Bizarre.

At least Russian heiress turned Sydney FC football doyenne Alina Barlow is putting her Instagram feed to good use, posting from the back deck of her super yacht on Sydney Harbour last week. And no she wasn’t out on a COVID patrol of her neighbours waterfront mansions. She informed PS it was a family fishing expedition, which “was a permitted activity when we checked”.

With a stiff voddy or glass of bubbly in one hand and her phone and halo ring light in the other, former Real Housewives of Sydney star Krissy Marsh has turned herself into the Dalai Lama of Dover Heights.

She has been busy posting nightly videos proffering sage words of wisdom ranging from her newfound distaste for Instagram filters (oh the irony) and lamenting the lot of today’s 20-something trust-fund babies no longer able to jet around the world. Truly heartbreaking stuff.

But perhaps the best feed belongs to hip hairdresser Brad Ngata, who has been uploading a seemingly endless array of disco ditties shot and performed in full costume under a giant mirror ball strung up at his Blue Mountains retreat to cheer up his celebrity clients who are dealing with the awful truth of greys and frizz.

The struggle is real, people.

Hemmes’ regional holiday

Billionaire bar baron Justin Hemmes says he’s been “following all the rules” after photos emerged of him playing doting dad in Byron Bay last weekend with his young daughters and current model girlfriend Madeline Holtznagel.

Hemmes revealed he had been out of Sydney for more than four weeks and spent two weeks in isolation in Narooma after being notified he was a close contact of a COVID case. Sydney went into lockdown during his isolation in the South Coast hamlet, where he is currently snapping up properties, thwarting his return. Instead he flew to Byron Bay where he is also hatching big plans for expansion.

Madeline Holtznagel and Justin Hemmes.

Madeline Holtznagel and Justin Hemmes.Credit:Lucy Rose, Louise Kennerley

Meanwhile, Hemmes’ own seaplane has become a regular visitor to Narooma, often spotted by locals landing on nearby Corunna Lake. However, Hemmes said he was not on board when it made a fleeting visit last weekend.

A $10,000 essential

Perhaps for some a $10,000 Louis Vuitton bag is an “essential”, but you have to plan your trip before walking into the luxury goods superstore on George Street, which continues to trade during the lockdown by offering “appointment only” bookings.

By appointment only: The Louis Vuitton boutique in Sydney.

By appointment only: The Louis Vuitton boutique in Sydney.

It’s the same deal up the road at the Dior boutique, while Tiffany & Co is only open to customers who have already purchased an item and are picking up, with five-minute time limits on customers who are allowed in only one at a time with strict “no browsing” rules.

David Jones continues to trade, though rival Myer has shut its doors in response to Sydney’s stay-at- home orders.

Hermes, Chanel, Prada and Armani have all closed their boutiques.


Caitlyn Jenner’s reality TV ambitions have brought her to Sydney.

Caitlyn Jenner’s reality TV ambitions have brought her to Sydney.

What arrival caps? While it’s not clear how it all bodes for her campaigning for the Governor of California role, but the world’s most famous trans woman Caitlyn Jenner is part Kardashian after all so the lure of reality television should not be understimated. Jenner is due to arrive in Sydney this weekend and will go into a fortnight quarantine before emerging as one of the stars in the VIP Big Brother series being shot at Sydney Olympic Park.