The Drama School
Notable Alumni

‘I truly value the training I received at The National and the dedicated artists who teach there. The exploration of self, text and connectivity enhanced my love of acting and opened my eyes to the importance of theatre. ‘

Ngaire Dawn Fair Graduate 2008

Bella Heathcote

Bella Heathcote

After studying at the National, Bella had a recurring role as Amanda Fowler on the television soap opera Neighbours. She played Victoria Winters alongside Johnny Depp in Tim Burton’s film adaptation of Dark Shadows, Jane Bennett in Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, and Gigi in The Neon Demon. She plays Nazi national Nicole Dörmer in the dystopian historical thriller series The Man in the High Castle and appeared as Leila Williams, a deranged ex-lover of Christian Grey, in the erotic romance film Fifty Shades Darker. Her latest Hollywood project is a lead role in Professor Marston and the Wonder Women.

Kat Stewart

Kat Stewart

1998 graduate, Kat Stewart portrayed Billie Proudman in the hugely popular television series Offspring, now in its 5th season. Kat received the AACTA Award for Best Guest or Supporting Actress in A Television Drama for her work in this role.
Her breakout role was the infamous Roberta Williams in the acclaimed series Underbelly. She received both the 2008 AFI award for Best Lead Actress and the 2009 Logie award for Most Outstanding Actress, Her other Tv credits include Mr and Mrs Murder, Tangle, 30 Seconds, Newstopia as well as recurring roles on City Homicide, Kick and Last Man Standing.Other TV includes Mr & Mrs Murder and Tangle Her television roles have led to successive Logie nominations for Most Outstanding Actress (2010, 2011 and 2012).

Richard Cawthorne

Richard Cawthorne

Richard Cawthorne has appeared in many film and television productions. His credits include Catching MilatFat Tony & CoBikie Wars: Brothers in ArmsThe StraitsEast West 101Rush (2008 TV series)Noise (2007 Australian film)NeighboursUnderbelly: SquizzyWolf Creek (TV series) and Killing Time, for which he won the 2012 Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) Award for Best Supporting Actor in a Television Drama. In 2015 Richard was appointed Ambassador to the National Theatre Drama School, Melbourne.

Esther Hannaford

Esther Hannaford

Esther received wide recognition as Penny Pingleton in the original Australian production of Hairspray in 2011. She then originated the role of Ann Darrow in Global Creatures’ big-budget musical King Kong at the Regent Theatre, Melbourne in 2013.

In 2014 and 2015, she performed in a revival of Nick Enright and Max Lambert’s musical Miracle City at the Hayes Theatre in Sydney, The 3 Mikados with Colin Lane and David Collins for the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Billie Bendix in Nice Work If You Can Get It for The Production Company, and Skurry in Last Man Standing for the Melbourne Theatre Company.

In 2016, Hannaford is playing the leading role of Audrey in an Australian national tour of Little Shop of Horrors. It was recently announced that she would appear in the Australian production of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, as Carole King.

John Sheedy

John Sheedy

John Sheedy is a multi-award nominated Australian Director whose work has been staged extensively throughout Australia. In 1998, John completed his Bachelor of Dramatic Art at the National Drama School in Melbourne before completing his Masters of Dramatic Art (Directing) at National Institute of Dramatic Arts in 2002. In  2010 John became the Artistic Director at Barking Gecko Theatre Company, delivering his last season for the company in 2015. In 2016 he became artistic director for Theatre Works, his last season will be for 2018.  His adaptation of Craig Silvey’s best-selling novel, JASPER JONES  premiered in August 2014 to a sell-out season and great critical acclaim. John was nominated for Best Production and Best Director for JASPER JONES and ONEFIVEZEROSEVEN at the 2015 Performing Arts WA Awards.

Sachin Joab

Sachin Joab

Since graduating from the National Theatre, Sachin has appeared in several films and television shows, including City Homicide, Rush, My Year Without Sex, 10 Terrorists, and Conspiracy 365. In 2011, Joab successfully auditioned for the recurring role of Ajay Kapoor in the soap opera Neighbours. He was later promoted to the main cast. Joab left the show in May 2013. The actor has since appeared in the SBS miniseries Better Man and the feature films The Legend Maker and  Lion, starring Dev Patel and Nicole Kidman.  In 2016 he played the lead role of Amir Kapoor in the Sydney Theatre Company  production of Disgraced.

Harvey Zielinski

Harvey Zielinski

Harvey Zielinski is a transgender actor (he/him) based in Melbourne, Australia.

Since graduating from The National Theatre Drama School in 2017, Harvey was selected to be one of Red Stitch’s 2018 Graduate Ensemble Members.   In 2018 at Red Stitch he appeared in Hir by Taylor Mac, The Antipodes and Suddenly Last Summer.  He recently guested on ABC comedy TV series Get Krack!n and was a 2018 Heath Ledger Scholarship top ten finalist. In 2016, Harvey was interviewed for the transgender episode of ground-breaking ABC documentary series You Can’t Ask That (ABC network). Also Harvey will be starring in the new Hollywood series  ‘Don’t look Deeper’ directed by Catherine Harwick on new viewing platform Quibi in April 2020.

Other credits include:   Chris in seasons 4/5 of the  SBS2/web-series Starting From…Now! Coal in the feature film Zoe.Misplaced and 186,000 by MKA: Theatre.

Harvey’s life work and passion is acting; he is rapidly forming part of the ever-improving representation of transgender characters and stories, and is a public advocate for the continuation of this work.

Brett Tucker

Brett Tucker

Since graduating from Melbourne’s National Theatre Drama School, Brett has been busy working in Australian and US productions. Best known in Australia for his long standing role of Dave Brewer in the award-winning TV series McLeod’s Daughters, he is also recognised for his role of Daniel Fitzgerald in Neighbours. After his notable feature debut in Australian independent film Mall Boy, Brett has gone on to appear in Thor: The Dark World alongside Chris Hemsworth and Anthony Hopkins, The Outsider, The Great Raid, and I Love You Too and the U.S series CSI, Off The Map, Spartacus and Castle.

Martin Copping

Martin Copping

Before moving to the US in 2009, Nash graduate, Martin Copping, played a range of roles in local television series such as Neighbours, Something in the Air, Blue Heelers and Rush  as well as leads in short features including The Countdown, Jackpot and Sheep Impact. Among  Marty’s recent American credits are the short Elegy for a Revolutionary for which he won Best Actor at the Filmstock Film Festival in New Mexico, and the features Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, Zombie Hunter and Forbidden Ground . A further feature, The Last Duane is currently in pre-production.

Lawrence Mooney

Lawrence Mooney

Lawrence Mooney is a stand up comedian. His brutally honest and hilarious insights have earned him Best National Act 2013 Perth Comedy Festival and Best Comedy 2011 Melbourne Fringe Festival.

From 2013-2016  Mooney hosted the theABC TV show, Dirty Laundry Live, a weekly comic dissection of the world of celebrity. ABC viewers will also be familiar with his work on Agony Uncles, Agony of Life and Agony of Christmas. In 2013 he also appeared on Tractor Monkey’s (ABC1), Slide Show (Seven Network) and It’s a Date (ABC1). Lawrence graduated from the National Theatre Drama School in 1995.

Geraldine Quinn

Geraldine Quinn

Geraldine Quinn is a songwriter, guitarist, singer, comedian and actor based in Melbourne, Australia. She won the Best Emerging Cabaret Artiste award at the 2006 Green Room Awards(Australia), and was nominated for Original Songs.

Quinn has appeared on Australian TV shows Spicks and Specks, RocKwiz, Adam Hills Tonight, The Comedy Channel and Upper Middle Bogan. She has performed solo shows SEXDEATHBOWIE, Bad Ambassador, Hex and the City and Shut Up and Sing in the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Adelaide Fringe Festival and Edinburgh Festival Fringe. In 2007 Quinn performed at The Famous Spiegeltent with Paul Kelly in a celebration of his songs by leading cabaret artists.

In July 2015, Quinn was asked to perform at the opening of the David Bowie Is exhibition in Melbourne.

Richard Davies

Richard Davies

After graduating from The National in 2005 Richard’s first television roles were as guests in Neighboursand Satisfaction. After this, he played Max Regnary #2 on The Saddle Club series 3 In 2009, he guest-starred on an episode of the second series of Rush and starred in the film Oxygen.

Since 2008, he has had a recurring role in Bed of Roses. In 2010, he played the lead in the short film When the Wind Changes, which he also wrote and produced. Currently, he is starring in Offspring. He played the role of David Hookes in Howzat! Kerry Packers War.

Ngaire Dawn Fair

Ngaire Dawn Fair

Ngaire is an ensemble member with renowned Australian Theatre company Red Stitch, having appeared there in a number of roles. She has also appeared in TV shows Holding the man, Killing Time, Satisfaction, The Slap and House Husbands but is probably most recognisable from her recent series of commercials for Ford Australia.

Tosh Greenslade

Tosh Greenslade

Tosh is an ensemble member of Shaun Micallef’s Mad as Hell on the ABC. On Mad as Hell he plays a diverse range of characters, such as advertising guru Flornoy Quimbie and ranting idiophobe Caspar Jonquil.

He also played the role of Marcus in Paper Giants: Magazine Wars (2013) and in 2014 he appeared twice as a panelist on Dirty Laundry Live and was a guest on Live on Bowen. In 2015, as well as appearing in season 5 of Mad as Hell, he played the role of Phil in the feature, The Subjects.

Jackie Woodburne

Jackie Woodburne

Jackie attended the National Theatre Drama School and graduated in 1980.

Woodburne is best known for two long-running soap opera roles. The first was Julie “Chook” Egbert in Prisoner, a role she played from 1985 to 1986. This was followed by the role of Susan Kennedy in Neighbours, a role she has played since 1994.

In 2005, she was nominated for the Best Female Performance in a Soap Opera award at the international Rose d’Or television festival, but was beaten by actress Lesley-Anne Down.

Woodburne appeared in a documentary special celebrating Neighbours’ 30th anniversary titled Neighbours 30th: The Stars Reunite, which aired in Australia and the UK in March 2015.

Janet Andreawartha

Janet Andreawartha

Andrewartha first came to prominence in the popular Australian series Prisoner. te 1985. She appeared in the police procedural Blue Heelers as Det. Bridget Ryan. Other appearances include a guest role in A Country Practice, and the telemovie Moby-Dick.

She may be best known for playing Lyn Scully in  Neighbours, a role she played from 1999 until 2006, returning in 2009 until 2011.

After her 2006 departure from Neighbours Andrewartha worked in London and with the Melbourne Theatre Company.  Andrewartha has been recognised twice by her peers at the Green Room Awards. She has appeared in many other plays including Rising Fish Prayer, Hotel Sorrento, Navigating, Jerusalem, Good Works, Underwear, Perfume and Crash Helmet, A Happy and Holy Occasion, Sex Diary of an Infidel, Love Letters, Framework, Lysistrata, Ticka Tocka Linga, Once a Catholic, Honour and Other Desert Cities.

Sarah Sutherland

Sarah Sutherland

Sarah graduated from the The National in 2000 after completing her BA (Psychology, Uni of Melb) and her Masters in Drama and Psychology (RMIT). She has been an ensemble member of Red Stitch since 2006. Sarah’s Red Stitch credits include Day One-A Hotel-Evening, That Face, Faces In the Crowd, Red Sky Morning, The Pain and the Itch, Motortown, After Miss Julie. She has also appeared on Australian television in Angry Boys, Neighbours, Blue Heelers and Stingers.

Eddie Orton

Eddie Orton

Eddie is a 2014 graduate of the National. Recent credits include Jurassica for Red Stitch Actors Theatre which was nominated for 5 Green Room Awards, Project: Hysteria for TBC Theatre as apart of the inaugural 2015 Poppy Seed Festival and the independent feature film About An Age. Throughout 2017, he toured with The Players for Bell Shakespeare, portraying Romeo and various other roles.

William Ewing

William Ewing

After graduating from the National Theatre in 2011, William played the recurring role of Griffin O’Donohue on Neighbours, Kevin in The Chocolate Frog directed by Malcolm Robertson, and is quite well known to Queensland for his role as the ‘Time Traveller’ in the RACQ car insurance commercial. In 2013 William appeared on screen as Oliver Armatage in Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, which screened on ABC1. He also toured Australia in the rock musical Rolling Thunder Vietnam in 2016.

Keith Brockett

Keith Brockett

Since graduating from The National Theatre, Keith has performed extensively throughout Australia, most notably for Melbourne Theatre Company Happy Ending, La Mama Theatre Porcelain, The Yellow Peril, Still A Hero, 5Pound Theatre Noises Off, Because of Reasons, The Tempest, Sex Diary of an Infidel and Chapel Off Chapel All That I Will Ever Be. He also received the Best Male Actor Award for his performance in Death by 1000 Cuts at the 2007 Short + Sweet Festival.

He was a series regular in the ABC cult hit The Librarians, for which the cast received Best Comedy Ensemble at the inaugural Equity Awards, and has worked on Rush, The Time of Our Lives, Bruce Lee Played Badminton Too, and Verite. Keith is a co-founder of The Kin Collective, as well as a member of the Melbourne-based theatre company 15 Minutes from Anywhere, and part of the current ensemble for the improvised comedy troupe The Big Hoo-Haa! Melbourne.

Janine Watson

Janine Watson

After graduating from the National Theatre Drama School Janine trained with SITI Company New York.

Her acting work includes A View from the Bridge dir. Iain Sinclair (RedLine); American Beauty Shop dir. Anna McGrath (KXT/Some Company); Antigone dir. Damien Ryan, Three Sisters dir. Kevin Jackson (SFJ); The Happy Prince, Dangerous Liaisons, Dracula dir. Stephen Nicolazzo (Little Ones Theatre); Dolores co-dir. Janine with Kate Box (RedLine); The Dream dir. Peter Evans (Bell Shakespeare); Triangle dir. Tanya Dickson (MKA); and the feature film That’s Not Me dir. Gregory Erdstein

Recent directing: Crimes of the Heart (Old Fitz), The Players (Bell Shakespeare). Janine is also a recipient of the Sandra Bates Directing Award.