PAMELA RABE earned accolades from critics for her performances with the Melbourne Theatre Company. In Sydney she is attracting similar attention. AMRUTA SLEE reports
As a fresh-faced drama student in Canada, Pamela Rabe played out her first professional role — a hooker — under the gaze of Tennessee Williams.
The legendary American playright was guest director at the tiny Vancouver Playhouse Acting School where she studied theatre. Rabe, rehearsing a small part, had plenty of time to observe Williams who had a disconcerting habit of discussing actors’ merits while they were on stage.
“He told me I had great legs,” she says cheerfully. To put it in perspective she explains she was so intimidated by everyone at the time that being watched by a theatrical icon was no more frightening than anything else. Now she sees it as a great introduction to the industry.
After that she fell in love with an Australian and in 1983 came out here to marry him — a move which coincided with the start of her acting career.
Home was Melbourne, where she became familiar to audiences as a member of the Melbourne Theatre Company, but at the moment it’s Sydney. “No-one in Sydney has seen me. I’m a new face.” she says. (more…)