Melissa Jaffer, Actor

Melissa Jaffer was born in 1936 in Gladstone South Australia. When World War II began, her father joined the RAAF and her mother supported the family as secretary to the head of a munitions factory. Her mother sang for Amelita Galli-Gurci of the Metropolitan Opera House and was predicted to have a brilliant future but did not pursue this career. When her father returned from the war they bought the Royal George Hotel in Kyneton, Victoria.  Melissa and her sister, Juanita, attended Loreto Mary’s Mount, Melissa from 1948 until 1950. Melissa’s first exposure to film was Laurence Olivier’s Hamlet shown on a donated projector at school.

After leaving school, Melissa met William Carr, head of the National Theatre School and Company in Melbourne who gave her the part of Helena in A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

In 1976, Melissa Jaffer was awarded an AFI award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Caddie.

Melissa has appeared in television roles including Bellbird, Brides of Christ, A Country Practice, Mother and Son and G.P and in film roles including Mad Max: Fury Road, Farscape: The Peacekeeper Wars and Cheek to Cheek.

(References: Wikipedia entry ‘Melissa Jaffer, My Country Childhood’, comp. Annabel Frost, Country Style)

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