In 2014, on the first anniversary of Chrissie Amphlett’s death due to breast cancer, JWT Sydney launched a campaign for the Cancer Council whose spearhead was a remaking of the music video for Amphlett’s song with the Divinyls, I Touch Myself, featuring female music celebrities, Olivia Newton John, Megan Washington, Sarah McLeod, Katie Noonan, Sarah Blasko, Suze DeMarchi, Deborah Conway, Kate Ceberano, Little Pattie and Connie Mitchell. The campaign urged women to touch themselves, the home test for breast cancer.
This year, to coincide with Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, that work has been reignited. JWT Sydney, now called J. Walter Thompson Sydney, has partnered with Berlei, to recreate Amphlett’s anthem and the campaign’s message again, this time with the celebrity champion – both of the moment and of strong women – Serena Williams. Williams is a long-term Berlei ambassador.
The full version of Serena Williams’ singing the Breast Cancer awareness anthem, I Touch Myself, has gone live, to coincide with the beginning of Breast Cancer Awareness Month (October 2018).
Sinead Roarty, associate creative director J. Walter Thompson Sydney, commented, “Serena Williams has a voice. Whether you agree with her or not, you can’t help but listen. And her voice is both powerful and vulnerable. Serena brings Chrissy Amphlett’s song to life in a way that is equally raw and soulful to deliver our message as simply as possible: touch yourself.
“Singing straight to camera while looking unflinchingly down the barrel is a big ask for even the most seasoned pro. Serena nailed it in three takes.
“Serena is the champion of champions. And now as a champion of women’s health, the message to take your breast health into your own hands will be heard by young women all around the world.”
Simon Langley, executive creative director, J. Walter Thompson Sydney, added,
“It has been an absolute privilege to work with Serena on this project. Yet again, she has shown what an amazing strength of character she has, and this powerful and moving film we’ve created for the I Touch Myself Project is just another demonstration of why Serena is an inspiration to millions around the world.”
Williams’ 1.20-minute version of the song was released on social media as a music video directed by Daniel Askill, the Grammy-nominated director of Sia’s Chandelier. A 60-second version has also been developed for TV.
Here is the teaser:
Amphlett’s husband, Charley Drayton, commented, “Every day we are reminded of how precious life is and the lives of those for whom we care strongly. It was Chrissy’s passion for life that continues to bring us together.
“Sharing Chrissy’s breast health and awareness message and having Serena, along with everyone who has graciously contributed to I Touch Myself Project team, has been enormous. Our pledge to Chrissy was to encourage all of us to look after one another and Serena is someone who has been outspoken on the welfare of all.”
Williams’ recording is supported by other campaign executions include print, outdoor, online, and a microsite, all developed by J. Walter Thompson.
“Serena is a passionate believer in women taking care of themselves and, although she has never recorded a song before, chose to sing this breast health anthem as a powerful reminder of the importance of self-examination,” explained Simon Langley, executive creative director, J. Walter Thompson Sydney.
“Getting young women to pay attention to a breast cancer message isn’t easy. But grabbing their attention with the things they love is. So we decided to start this important conversation by speaking to some of their greatest passions: music, sport and celebrity. And Serena is no ordinary celebrity. She’s a strong, powerful ambassador who is not afraid to stand up and make herself heard on the issues close to her heart.
“We’re honoured to have such an advocate for women’s health take part in this important campaign,” Langley continued.
“Her inspirational voice and strength of character comes through loud and clear on a multitude of channels, and continues the legacy of the I Touch Myself Project that has already helped so many women get in touch with their breast health.”
To coincide with the campaign, Berlei has released a new, limited-edition snakeskin print rock star inspired range, named The Chrissy after Chrissy Amphlett. The range includes a t-shirt bra which is lined with the words, I Touch Myself, to remind women to examine their breasts for early signs of breast cancer when they are getting dressed each day. Also available is post-surgery bra, designed specifically for women who have undergone breast cancer surgery. 100% of the profits from the sale of this range will be donated to Breast Cancer Network Australia (BCNA).
As part of the campaign, Williams models The Chrissy t-Shirt bra in a range of campaign executions also developed by J. Walter Thompson.
About I Touch Myself Project:
The 2014 music video reached over 400 million people worldwide.
In 2016, J Walter Thompson approached Berlei to partner with the project. Drayton shared with Berlei the difficulty Chrissy faced when finding a bra post-surgery that made her feel feminine while still being practical. With the choice of post-surgery bras limited for those fighting breast cancer, Berlei designed its first rock and roll inspired bra specifically for women who have undergone breast cancer surgery in 2016. The Chrissy Post-Surgery bra revolutionised the post-care bra options and supported women emotionally and physically during a very confronting time.
Berlei has been a supporter of Breast Cancer Network Australia since 2005 and 100% of profits from The Chrissy Bra are donated to BCNA.
The Chrissy Bra range is available here.
Starring: Serena Williams
Director: Daniel Askill
Music Director: Charley Drayton
Chorus Harmony Vocal: Chrissy Amphlett
Music Producer, Programmer, Mix engineer, Guitar & Visual music arranger: Pat Thrall
Recording voice coach to Serena Williams: Koo Abuali
Original music track: I Touch Myself
Original Songwriters: Christina Amphlett, Tom Kelly, Billy Steinberg & Mark McEntee
Creative & Strategy: J. Walter Thompson Sydney
Executive Creative Director: Simon Langley
Associate Creative Director: Sinead Roarty
Senior Creative & Art Director: Alex Antoniou
Client Services Director: Ana Lynch
Senior Strategist: Heather Morrison
Social Media Strategist: Craig Mack
Account Managers: Ellie Sutton &Bronte Rohrig
Senior Producers: Amanda Slatyer & Tracey-Lee Permall (Hogarth)
Microsite: Mirum Australia
Executive Producer: Sara Greco @ Strangelove
Production Company: Collider
Director: Daniel Askill
Executive Producer: Lucy Pilkington
DOP: Todd Banhaz
Editor: Lorin Askill
Post Production: Hogarth
Music Studio: Song Zu Sydney
Division Manager: Holli Michelle
Marketing Manager: Andrea Michelle
Brand Manager: Chontelle Clark
Media: OMD Melbourne
Business Director: Kylie Pascoe
Account Director: Camilla Wallace
Account Manager: Jasmine Poole
Public Relations : Mint
Client Services Director: Miranda Bryce