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Favorite Times With Michael
written by Michael Hutchence's niece, Erin.

Christmas in 1993 on the Gold Coast.
Michael gave Erin a guitar and encouraged her to write songs

When I think about my favorite times with Michael, the thing that comes to mind is the fact that we shared a love of books and art. I was a painfully shy child who walked around with a book under my arm because it gave me security to know that I could open it up at any time and engage myself in the words instead of being tongue-tied if someone should speak to me.

Michael understood my anxiety because he was also a shy child and even as a teenager, he was often uncomfortable in situations where he did not know everybody in the room. I was so grateful to him for never pushing me to be more outward when I was backstage.

The first book I shared with Michael when I was 6-years-old was Sam Shepard's “Fool For Love and Other Plays”. It was a strange book for a little child to be carrying around I admit, but it had been given to me by a babysitter who was studying to be an actress. She was studying the plays and I just thought it was a cool book. One day in Sydney , when I went to lunch with Michael and Michele Bennett I took this book and Michael was intrigued. He thumbed through it and said he wished he had a copy.

That Christmas my Mom and I tried to find a copy for him, to no avail, so I gift-wrapped my ‘dog-eared', much read, copy and gave it to him. Michael was so touched and I felt such happiness that of all the beautiful gifts he received that year, he seemed to treasure mine the most.

After this, he never sent a fax or spoke with me without mentioning what he was currently reading or what he had heard was good reading material. I miss Michael every day and wish he could be here to meet my son who also loves to read.

Erin Wapner
California , USA.
January 16, 2006