“I will always be grateful”
Lynne McGranger was concealing a major secret when she first arrived on the Home and Away set in 1993: “I didn’t have any idea what I was doing!” she declares with a giggle.
After deciding to leave her theatre origins behind, it was her first significant TV part, and she was afraid.
When Lynne was offered the part of Irene Roberts, she was 39 years old, leading many members of the cast and crew to believe she was an experienced actor.
“Lynne, 69, says, “I felt total abject horror.”
Because I had never done anything similar, I was afraid. Although I had some television acting experience from The Flying Doctors and other projects, I had never utilised a steadicam. I found it strange to remain in one place because I was so used to bouncing about on stage. One of the producers is what I distinctly recollect saying: “Just watch what Judy Nunn does, you get the sense of how it works.””
She did as well.
Judy, who portrayed Ailsa, and Ray Meagher, who continues to play the legendary Alf Stewart, provided Lynne with a great deal of support.
But she acknowledges that it took her “about a year” to feel at home.
She continues, “You stumble along, and then all of a sudden, people keep paying you because they think you know what you’re doing [laughs].
And now, here we are.
is a far cry from her beginnings today. The 35th season of the show is being honoured by the cast and staff.
Despite her unassuming and laid-back demeanour, Lynne has a place in history. Ray has been a part of the cast from the start of the series in 1988, but she holds the distinction for the longest-serving female actor.
Her depiction of the “Aussie battler with a heart of gold,” whose dry wit and vernacular are ingrained in popular culture, is well-known. The show hasn’t slowed down yet, either. The drama programme won the TV WEEK Logie for Most Popular Drama Series earlier this year, raising their overall tally to 68.
“It doesn’t feel that [long] at all,” It does, though, when I think back to my haircuts from back then, she laughs.
When we discuss it and memories resurface, I exclaim, “Oh yeah, bloody hell. That happened so long ago! However, in general, it doesn’t seem like 30 years have passed.
Younger cast members, such as former co-stars Christie Hayes, who played Kirsty Sutherland, Tempany Deckert, who played Selina Cook, and Courtney Miller, who played Bella Nixon, frequently turned to Lynne for help because she was a seasoned member of the cast. She continues to talk to them nowadays.
However, social media has seen more recently the remarkable bond between Lynne and Johnny Ruffo, who was given a terminal brain cancer diagnosis in 2017.
From 2013 through 2016, he appeared on the show as Chris Harrington.
Regarding her former co-star, Lynne comments, “He’s absolutely nice.”
I’m unable to fathom what it would be like to receive that type of a life sentence at that age.
However, where there is hope, there is light, and Johnny won’t give up. He is unfailingly fearless and inspiring. I adore him dearly, and yet he continues to behave inappropriately.
It’s understandably difficult to single out a favourite among the thirty years’ worth of narratives. The portrayal of Irene’s battle with breast cancer, however, was the most important of them all.
Nikki, the daughter of Lynne’s best friend, was dealing with breast cancer at the time.
Irene was reflecting what was taking place with her. Because chemo can have a variety of effects on various people, and because I didn’t want to portray it in a favourable light, it was very important to me that I do it correctly. I wanted to portray it as a terrible reality, and I’m glad we were able to do that. And regrettably, Nikki did not survive it whereas Irene did. A few years ago, she passed away. ”
This kind of deep introspection, according to Lynne, is what keeps her on the show.
According to her, “Home and Away has always sought to mirror society, which can be difficult for a 7pm schedule.”
I want to express my gratitude to all of our devoted fans for supporting us.