13 February 2024

A star in the making: Town idolises 'trolley boy' Isaac McCallum

| Katrina Condie
Start the conversation
Isaac McCallum's fans

Isaac McCallum’s fans at Ulladulla. Photo: Katrina Condie

Ulladulla’s supermarket trolley collector Isaac McCallum has proven he has what it takes to make it on the big stage, so far impressing the judges in this year’s Australian Idol competition.

The whole town has thrown its support behind the 23-year-old who has been singing in local supermarket carparks, with just a phone and a microphone, for around six years.

Despite a heckling by judge Kyle Sandilands, who asked him whether he felt these were his people or did he feel he was “really a trolley guy who happens to be a singer?”, Isaac smashed Sunday night’s chorus line Top 30 competition singing an a cappella version of Grenade by Bruno Mars.

READ ALSO World in crisis: HSC artist Manny Kneeshaw combines passions for art and science

After shaking off the nerves, he made it through to the next round, the teams competition to be aired tonight (Monday), when he will perform Pink song Perfect alongside fellow contestants Denvah and Bethany.

Speaking from the Sydney studio today (Monday), Isaac said he was “definitely feeling confident”.

The Ulladulla community came together on Monday afternoon at the town’s civic centre to send their well-wishes to Isaac.

Member for South Coast Liza Butler had signs made and installed in the centre of town and she said the entire region was proud of Isaac.

singer on stage

Isaac McCallum on the Australian Idol stage. Photo: Seven Network.

“Like so many others, I was moved to tears when Isaac told his personal story on Australian Idol,” she said.

“When I heard that the Ulladulla community wanted a banner outside of the Civic Centre, I thought it was a wonderful way to show Isaac how much he meant to the Ulladulla area.”

Ulladulla Civic Centre manager Michelle Babington said Isaac had done the town proud.

“I have loved listening to Isaac play in the carpark for many years and sometimes just sit in my car with the window open to listen, as I’m sure many people do,” she said.

“The Ulladulla and surrounds community loves to get behind one of their own, and it is fantastic to see such overwhelming and well-deserved support for Isaac.”

Isaac McCallum's mum Natasha

Team Isaac’s loudest voice, Isaac’s mum Natasha McCallum. Photo: Katrina Condie.

Isaac has thanked the people of Milton-Ulladulla for their ongoing support.

“Definitely feeling the love,” he said.

“The community has always had my back. Without them I really wouldn’t be where I am today and also the confidence I have, it’s all because of them.”

READ ALSO Temora braces for outback extravaganza: Tom Curtain’s ‘Why We Live Out Here’ tour

Isaac has always had a love of singing, but said he was a shy kid who was always encouraged by his mum to get on stage whenever he had a chance.

“My mum has inspired me to be the man I am today,” he said.

“When I was younger, she’d encourage me to get on the stage at karaoke nights, saying, ‘If you don’t do it, you’re gonna regret it’, so I always got on the stage.

“I started busking about six years ago. One day I got up and thought, ‘Stuff it, I’ll just go out and test it out’ – and from there my confidence kept building and building, and here I am.”

This year’s Australian Idol winner will receive a recording contract with industry giant Sony Music Entertainment Australia and $100,000 in prize money.

Start the conversation

Daily Digest

Do you like to know what’s happening around your region? Every day the About Regional team packages up our most popular stories and sends them straight to your inbox for free. Sign-up now for trusted local news that will never be behind a paywall.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.