What’s your connection with Brimbank?
I teach acting classes in Keilor Park, which is one of the six locations I teach at across Melbourne as part of ATA Acting Studio. A lot of my students come from Brimbank, with Ardeer, Keilor Downs, Keilor Park, Keilor, Kings Park and Taylors Lakes all very well represented in my classes.
What do you like best about the area and what do you think could be done to improve it?
Brimbank is a very vibrant and multicultural area, which is something I love. There’s a lot of actors in the area and given the cultural diversity, I’ve been able to teach aspiring actors from a number of different backgrounds. In terms of improvement, I’d love to see more theatres in the area and greater opportunities to pursue creative arts.
You’ve been teaching acting for a number of years – is there anything that stands out as different among your Brimbank students?
I’ve been teaching acting for 23 years. What I’ve really noticed about Brimbank is that the cultural diversity makes for a great variety of performers. The actors in Brimbank are all very hard working and also participate in other areas of the performing arts such as singing and dancing.
Have you had any past students of note?
I’ve had a few students who have gone on to achieve great things in the industry. Toby Wallace, who is playing the lead role in the Romper Stomper series, is one that jumps to mind. I taught Toby when he was a child, through to a teenager. I’m also currently teaching a few talented actors who are part of the cast of Matilda. Other actors from the school have gone on to have main roles in Neighbours, Barracuda, Underbelly, to name a few.
There’s been some successful productions out west recently, namely with
. Has this impacted the industry out west and how has it impacted your class sizes?
It’s been good to see many local film and TV productions being filmed in Melbourne’s west of recent times. I think the screen industry has a lot more diversity these days and the west is very topical at the moment.
The current climate of the industry is about authentic storytelling and many locations around Melbourne’s west have been highlighted as part of this.
Tell us about your own acting career
I have been a professional actor for about 26 years. In that time I’ve had roles in TV shows such as
Neighbours, Frontline and A Country Practice. I also starred as a semi-regular in series two of Prank Patrol. I have also worked in film and theatre over the years having appeared in numerous TV commercials and performed in A Midsummer Nights Dream.