Articles-Celeb In The Making

PAULINE CAMPTON - Australian Actress

Pauline Campton; An actor who's realist with passion. “I like affecting people and telling them stories”

When Pauline was young she always wanted to have a creative outlet.  Although she entered a talent competition at 13 years old while living on the Gold Coast, she didn't start formal training in acting till her mid-twenties.  “I always wanted to do it but I was a bit afraid...It was a confidence thing...I didn’t know how to do it or go about it.” She lived in a country town in New South Wales, joined a theatre group and performed a minor role in a play.  “That was my first real taste of performing and I loved it.”
  Pauline Campton - Actress, photo taken by Chrissy Layton, AusNotebook Music & Creative.

Following for passion, she graduated from the Australian Film and Television School in 1996 and played her first theatre role in 1997 as Mae, sister-in-law to Maggie the Catin Tennesee William’s Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.  Pauline's television work in the late 1990s included the short film, Academy, a tele-movie as well as commercial work on the Gold Coast.
Theatre is Pauline’s first love.  “I like the interaction of the audience.  It is different from television where you have to get it right the first time”.  She hopes that one day she will “just once” do professional theatre with the Queensland Theatre Company.

One of Pauline’s favourite acting roles was in Shakespeare’s lesser known comedies, 'Measure for Measure' in 1997, produced by Trocadero Productions, where she played the Madame of a whore house named 'Mistress Overdone'.  “It was a small role, but I loved every minute of it... I would never do nude, never, but I actually had to get down to stockings and all that sort of thing.  I’m not into that of course but I did not feel bad at all.  To my surprise I really enjoyed it and the cast was really great as well.” 

Pauline is adept in mimicking accents following training with a dialect coach. These skills have been highlighted in stage reviews. “They were really impressed with my accents and dialect work...I have a natural ability to pick up on accents.  I just have to listen and I'm lucky to have what you call a ‘good ear’ to be able to hear the accent and then mimic it.  Some people have it and some people don’t.” Her performance as a Jamaican slave named 'Tituba', Harvest Rain’s Production of Arthur Miller’s The Crucible demonstrated this skill.

Pauline admires the acting skills of Kate Blanchett. “She is one of Australia’s success stories...I really like her… she is a character actor.  She believes in the transformation. Pauline says, “When they look at you on stage they don’t see you but the character you are acting...The biggest compliment for me is when I come off stage and people who have just seen me perform do not recognise me, as me.  So for me the job has been successfully done.”  Pauline also admires Jodie Foster and Aussie actor, Namoi Watts for her tenacity and for never giving up.

Pauline feels that it appears that actors are “resurrected from the tomb”. She questions why others are not given a chance, “instead of rehashing the same performers”.  She believes that the Industry should give two or three up-and-coming young artists a chance, rather than rehashing the “same old, same old”.  Pauline understands the need for “getting bums on seats” and the concern that the public might not attend productions with lessor known actors.  “The Industry should just take a chance, for there are many people tired of not getting noticed.  I’m one of them,” (she says, laughing).

Pauline is realist and enjoys her day job.  She has made a firm commitment “to not starve for her art”.  For Pauline, if her home life is not secure and stable, enabling her to pay her bills, the pressure, “would spill over” and she “would not be able to focus.”  This does not detract from her passion for acting. “I put everything I have into it when I act.  I would love the opportunity to be a professional actor….but probably why I don’t do it for a living is because of the Industry…..and because I put so much emotion into a performance.  When I finish a show I am absolutely wrecked, exhausted emotionally.  So that is not a good thing because you should be able to turn it on and turn it off, which I can do sometimes.  But a couple of times I’ve actually been a bit naughty and have pushed myself a little too hard, and beat myself up about it.”

“I realise that for me acting is an outlet. I like affecting people and telling them stories... Changing my appearance, away from who I am, is a challenge for me.  A deep amount of emotional ability is required and I have more of that than the average person, I think. Acting is a great outlet to channel that sort of energy, and it keeps me very grounded.  I do have a day job but acting is my other life so I’m getting the best of both worlds.”

This balanced approach to work and acting hasn’t hindered her recognition in the arts. Pauline was nominated twice for 'Best Actress', 2002 at The Perform/4MBS Awards for her role as Annie in ' Alan Ayckbourn's The Norman Conquests' and as 'Mary Haines' in Clair Booth Luce's The Women.  Both performances were produced by ‘Mixed Company’. Other productions she has acted in include Little Women and Steel Magnolias.

We look forward to seeing more roles interpreted by this talented artist.

Pauline supports any research in finding a cure for AIDS. “I am two hundred per cent behind it.  Someone close to me has suffered from the disease (HIV) and I am very supportive about any research and anything that would assist in finding a cure.” 



Article and photos by Chrissy Layton - AusNotebook Music & Creative  (Revised 20/5/07)

Associated articles:   Little Women
Steel Magnolias

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