Mcleod's Daughters: articles

Inside Story: Tucker's daughters

Abi Tucker's versatility as a performer has seen her taking on acting roles in acclaimed TV shows like Heartbreak High, Wildside and The Secret Life of Us and making a name for herself as a singer and musical-theatre star.

After a sojourn in the UK, Tucker has returned down under to join the cast of Nine's ever-popular rural drama McLeod's Daughters, playing Grace Kingston, the feisty, estranged younger sister of Regan McLeod (Zoe Naylor).

Playing a campdrafter (that's cattle herder to you urban types) is a new direction for Tucker, who's traditionally been seen in roles that keep her closer to the city, but it's one she's happily embraced.

Q: How are you liking your role on McLeod's Daughters?

A: I'm really enjoying playing Grace. She comes in with a bang, and she seems quite wild but she's also a very gentle kind of soul.

Q: It's something of a departure for you, isn't it?

A: The roles I've played in the past tend to have had very contrasting personalities and attitudes to life and so forth, but I think every new challenge is brilliant. Most of the characters I've played in the past have been city people, so it's quite strange to be playing someone from the country. And I've been lucky in taking on Grace because she's got many things happening in her life. So it's a very different role for me, but it's fantastic. In the scheme of things, it's something I've really enjoyed.

Q: Were you pursued by the makers of the show or did you audition for the role?

A: I auditioned for Grace my initial audition was actually in Edinburgh! I heard about the role while I was working overseas and sent a videotaped audition back to Australia. They then wanted to see me in person, so I came back here to do that. It was really interesting, making that switch from Edinburgh to Adelaide, but it's something that I'm really glad I did.

Q: Were you outdoorsy at all before joining the show? Was it daunting for you, having to portray someone confident around horses and livestock and the like?

A: A little bit, but it's amazing the level of experience the wranglers on the show have and what they teach you. The McLeod's ensemble, in terms of cast and crew, is really second to none. And I love all different mediums of the arts, so I think if you're pushing yourself to take in new experiences even horseriding and sheep-shearing! you're consistently learning.

Q: There's seven years of McLeod's history to take in did you have to do a crash-course before joining the show?

A: You pick it up as you go along. I've personally got a fair bit of background about the show and its characters, but as a character coming into McLeod's Daughters it makes sense to come in with a freshness, not knowing everything.

Q: Joining McLeod's means relocating to its South Australian location. How's that working out for you?

A: I've been living in Adelaide for six months now it's a great city. I feel very comfortable. Dealing with the extreme landscape around here is so different from shooting in a studio. Looking out into such a beautiful space, it's really interesting what you see.

By Guy Davis
April 30, 2007
Rural Press Network