Actress says the Church was her first theatre


Actress Theresa Healey told Stuff that lots of Catholics become actors: “I think it’s because we’re introduced to the concept of spirituality from an early age.

Mass is a performance, it’s all rituals, mystery and symbolism. The transubstantiation, wine becomes blood, bread the body.

The church was my first theatre, then the theatre became my church.”

Healy first became well-known for her role as nurse Carmen Roberts, in the New Zealand Soap Opera Shortland Street. 

Last year she played the part of the Queen in the Auckland Theatre Company’s production of The Audience.

At that time Healey told Eleanor Black in an interview on Stuff that she went to Mass on Sundays at the near-by Mary MacKillop Centre.

She said the sisters there are such interesting women: “who came out here from Ireland when they were 18 and they are now 90 and they have got the most wonderful histories.

I just love going and talking to them. They have given up their lives for a belief in something – and we don’t believe in much these days. They have become like my little family across the road.”

In her 30s, Healy wanted to have children but found it really hard.

“After a couple of devastating miscarriages I went to America to get an agent then, at 37, I found out I was pregnant, so I came home.”

“Once I had the two boys, everything changed. Because it was something I’d wanted for such a long time, I put all my energy into them and the school.”

Healey is soon to appear in Head High, a six-part drama series about the hopes and dreams of high school rugby players in New Zealand.

Head High premieris on Three, Sunday, June 28 at 8.30 pm.


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News category: New Zealand.

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