Tina Bursill

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Tina Bursill
Tina Bursill.jpg
Bursill in 2012
Born (1951-07-24) 24 July 1951 (age 72)
Sydney, Australia
Years active1973–present
Notable work Skyways (1979–1981)
Prisoner (1983–1984)
Doctor Doctor (2016–2021)

Tina Bursill (born 24 July 1951) is an Australian actress. She played Louise Carter on the television series Skyways (1979–1981) and Sonia Stevens on Prisoner (1983–1984). She played Meryl Knight in the Nine Network drama series Doctor Doctor . Bursill won the AFI (AACTA) Award for Best Supporting Actress for the 1987 film Jilted .


Early life

Tina Bursill was born on the 24 July 1951 in Sydney. Initially, she intended to pursue a career in anthropology, however, she set her sights on becoming an actress. She studied drama at the National Institute of Dramatic Art and graduated in 1971.



Bursill started her career in musicals and stand-up comedy, before being cast in more serious roles in theatre.

Most recently, she was in a production of Cinderella in 2022.


Bursill made her television debut in 1973, appearing in the lead role of short-lived comedy series The People Next Door as Meg Penrose. She was a regular character in daily soap opera The Unisexers which was launched in February 1975 on the Nine Network, however the program's low ratings led to its cancellation and removal from broadcast after only three weeks. What followed was a number of guest appearances on Australian television series, before receiving the role of Louise Carter in the Seven Network drama series Skyways , for which she appeared from 1979 to 1981. During this period, she also had a recurring role on police drama series, King's Men between 1976 and 1980.

In 1983, Bursill was cast in the role of Sonia Stevens on Network Ten's cult classic prison drama series Prisoner (Prisoner: Cell Block H), in which she was introduced in the fifth season as a devious vice queen imprisoned for heroin trafficking. She remained in the series until 1984. Her role as Sonia Stevens is one she is most recognised for. After departing the series, Bursill appeared in several recurring roles; in A Country Practice as Bianca Forbes-Hamilton (1981) and Cecily Day (1985), Hey Dad..! as Det. Sgt. Anne Burke (1987), and Heartbreak High (1997) as Hilary Scheppers (the mother of characters Ryan and Anita). She had previously appeared in Heartbreak High the year before as TV news reporter, Trish Ferro.

Bursill is also known for her recurring roles on the Seven Network soap opera Home and Away during the fourth season (1991) and fourteenth season (2001) as Lois Crawford and Stella Patterson respectively. Bursill most recently appeared in the recurring role of Kathy Carpenter in Neighbours during the thirtieth season in 2014. [1]

In 2023 Bursill appeared in the Australian television series One Night . [2] and also appeared in Foxtel/Binge Drama Strife.


Bursill made her feature film debut in 1975 when she was cast in The Great Macarthy , a sports comedy with John Jarratt and Barry Humphries. Her second film role came in 1984, when she appeared in Melvin, Son of Alvin , a sequel to the 1973 comedy, Alvin Purple . In 1987, she starred in Jilted , which earned her an Australian Film Institute Awards for Best Actress in a Supporting Role.

Further film credits include Afraid to Dance , Spider and Rose , Billy's Holiday , The Goddess of 1967 , Son of the Mask , Three Blind Mice , Random 8, and Wish You Were Here .



1973SolomonTV film
1975 The Great Macarthy Miss DeevilFeature film
1978 A Good Thing Going JeanetteTV film
1984 Melvin, Son of Alvin Reporter Dee TannerFeature film
1985 Robbery SuzyTV film
1986 The Three Musketeers VoiceAnimated TV film
A Single Life Billie RussellTV film
1987 Jilted PaulaFeature film
1989 Afraid to Dance Driving WomanFeature film
1992 The Distant Home Dr. RosenTV film
1994 Spider and Rose Sister AbbottFeature film
1995 Billy's Holiday LouiseFeature film
1998Entertaining AngelsShort film
Never Tell Me Never VirginiaTV film
Aftershocks Kerri IngramTV film
2000 The Goddess of 1967 EstherFeature film
Cheek to CheekJulieShort film
2001Saturn's ReturnSheilaTV film
2002 Heroes' Mountain Margy DonaldTV film
2003Courts mais GAY: Tome 5Sheila (Segment "Saturn's Return"Feature film
BlackJack CarmenTV film
2004 Small Claims RhondaTV film
2005 Son of the Mask Network ExecutiveFeature film
2006ShuffleDeniseShort film
2007One of the Lucky OnesAdditional Voice (voice)Short film
PleasanceBiddyShort film
2008 Three Blind Mice CandyFeature film
2011Random 8Flimmaker & NarratorShort film
2012 Wish You Were Here Margie McKinneyFeature film
2013Bloody HenryJaneShort film
2014 Jack Irish: Dead Point PatTV film
2015Going DownShort film
2018 The Flip Side IrisFeature film


1973 The People Next Door Regular role: Meg PenroseTV series, 20 episodes
1974 Silent Number Guest role: AnnetteTV series, 1 episode
A Touch of Reverence TV miniseries
1975 The Unisexers Regular role: FelicityTV series, 16 episodes
Matlock Police Guest role: Jennifer CraigTV series, 1 episode
The Dave Allen Show in AustraliaRegular: Various charactersTV series
1976 Alvin Purple Guest role: BerniceTV series, 1 episode 9: "The Rhythm Method"
King's Men Regular role: Policewoman Jaybee GiddingsTV series, 13 episodes
The EmigrantsGuest role: Nurse WatsonTV series, episode 3: "13,000 Miles Away"
1978 Chopper Squad Guest role: MotherTV series, episode 12: "Dangerous Weapon"
1979 The Oracle Guest roleTV series, 1 episode
1979–1980 Skyways Regular role: Louise CarterTV series, 136 episodes
1981, 1986 A Country Practice Guest role: Bianca Forbes-HamiltonTV series, episodes 13 & 14: "Alternatives"
1982 Winner Take All Lead role: Liz BellTV miniseries, 10 episodes
1983–1984 Prisoner Regular role: Sonia StevensTV series, 54 episodes
1984 Special Squad Guest role: MeredithTV series, episode 25: "The Bribe"
1985 The Fast Lane Guest role: FelicityTV series, 1 episode
1981–86 A Country Practice Recurring role: Cecily DayTV series, 14 episodes
1987Australian Traineeship SystemHerselfDocumentary
Willing and Abel Recurring role: Margaret HillTV series
Hey Dad...! Recurring role: Det. Sgt. Anne BurkeTV series, 6 episodes
1987–1988 Rafferty's Rules Recurring role: Erica JamisonTV series, 2 episodes
1989In Melbourne TodayGuest - HerselfTV series, 1 episode
1989 This Man... This Woman Support role: Liz MaddocksABC TV miniseries, 2 episodes
1990 Jackaroo Lead role: Martha LoganTV miniseries, 2 episodes
The Flying Doctors Guest role: Billie SorensenTV series, episode 15: "Billie and Pete"
1991 G.P. Guest roles: Caroline LalorTV series, 1 episode
1991, 2002 Home and Away Recurring roles: Stella Patterson / Lois CrawfordTV series, 31 episodes
1992 Bony Guest role: PetaTV series, episode 6: "Surf, Sun... and Murder"
EEO Free For All ForumNarratorDocumentary
1993 Cluedo TV series, 1 episode
1994 Mother and Son Guest role: CarmenTV series, 1 episode
Under The Skin JulieTV series, 1 episode 9: "Long Way Round"
The Ferals Guest role: White Ant (voice)TV series, 1 episode
1995 G.P. Guest role: Adele MeyerTV series, 1 episode
Over the Hill Guest roleTV series, 1 episode
1996–1997 Heartbreak High Regular role: Hilary Scheppers / TrishTV series, 37 episodes
1996 Pacific Drive TV series, 1 episode
1997 Heartbreak High Recurring role: Trish FerraTV series
1998 Murder Call Guest role: Lori MagnusTV series, 1 episode
1999 All Saints Guest role: Robyn SimmsTV series, 1 episode
2000 Farscape Recurring role: Empress NoviaTV series, 3 episodes
2001–2002 BackBerner Guest role: Jennie TurkTV series, 1 episode
2001 Corridors of Power Guest role: PetraTV series, 1 episode
2001–02 BackBerner Guest roles: Jennie / Naomi KennedyTV series, 2 episodes
2002 MDA Guest role: Dr. Ruth McIntyreTV series, 1 episode
2003 Grass Roots Guest role: Ariadne TotosTV series, 1 episode
Always Greener Recurring role: Lucy BuckinghamTV series, 2 episodes
White Collar Blue Guest role: CaroleTV series, 1 episode
2004 Out There TV series, 1 episode
2005 Blue Water High Guest role: KatrinaTV series, 1 episode
Dramatically BlackTV series, 1 episode
2008 All Saints Guest roles: Helen Fahey / Margaret EvansTV series, 2 episodes
2011 Offspring Recurring role: MarilynTV series, 2 episodes
Crownies Guest role Magistrate Ellen HansbyTV series, 1 episode
2012 Rake Guest role: MiriamTV series, 1 episode
A Moody Christmas Regular role: Maree MoodyTV series, 6 episodes
2013–2014 The Time of Our Lives Recurring role: LenoreTV series, 3 episodes
2014 The Moodys [3] Regular role: Maree MoodyTV series, 8 episodes
2014, 2016 Neighbours [4] Recurring role: Kathy CarpenterTV series, 21 episodes
2016–2021 Doctor Doctor [5] Regular role: Meryl KnightTV series, 48 episodes
2017 Drop Dead Weird Guest role: Tweedy LadyTV series, 1 episode
2019 Harrow Guest role: Alice HobsonTV series, 1 episode
2021 Wentworth [6] [7] Recurring role: Eve WilderTV series, 3 episodes
Wentworth: UnlockedSelfTV Special
Frayed Guest role: CathyTV series, 1 episode
2023 Ten Pound Poms Recurring role: Mrs. WalkerTV series, 3 episodes
One Night [8] Recurring role: HelenTV series, 4 episodes
Strife [9] Regular role: GinnyTV series, 6 episodes

As herself

1976 Celebrity Squares ContestantTV series, 1 episode
1978; 1980 The Mike Walsh Show GuestTV series, 2 episodes
1984The 1984 Annual TV Week Logie AwardsHerself - Audience member with 'Prisoner' castTV Special
1985 Blankety Blanks ContestantTV series, 2 episodes
1987 Have A Go JudgeTV series, 3 episodes
1987 1987 Australian Film Institute Awards HerselfTV special
1989 The Midday Show GuestTV series, 1 episode
1991 Tonight Live With Steve Vizard GuestTV series, 1 episode
1991 The Main Event ContestantTV series, 1 episode
1992 The World Tonight Guest ("Beauty and the Beast' segment)TV series, 1 episode
1995Monday to FridayGuestTV series, 1 episode
1995; 1998; 2000; 2001 Good Morning Australia GuestTV series, 4 episodes
1997 This Is Your Life GuestTV series, 1 episode
2000 The Morning Shift GuestTV series, 1 episode
2008 Susie GuestTV series, 1 episode
2009 9am with David & Kim GuestTV series, 1 episode
2018 The 60th TV Week Logie Awards PresenterTV special
2019 Talkin' Bout Your Generation ContestantTV series, 1 episode
2020 Today GuestTV series, 1 episode
2020; 2021; 2022; 2023 Today Extra GuestTV series, 5 episodes
2021Wentworth UnlockedGuest (Eve Wilder)TV special
2021Hot Off The PressGuestTV series, 1 episode
2021Teal TalkGuestTV series, 1 episode
2021 11th AACTA Awards PresenterTV special
2022 Studio 10 GuestTV series, 1 episode
2022; 2023 The Morning Show GuestTV series, 2 episodes


1971Theatre In Education
1971 Hippolytus University of NSW Old Tote Theatre
1971 Lady Windemere's Fan Lady Windemere NIDA Theatre
1972 Grease MartyMetro Theatre, Melbourne
1972Great Banana Split Twelfth Night Theatre
1972-73 Godspell Richbroke Theatre
1974Scandals of '74Macleay Theatre, Sydney
1975The Jockey Club Stakes Her Majesty's Theatre, Adelaide & Princess Theatre Melbourne
1976The Ripper Show
1977Son of Naked VicarThe Speakeasy, Kensington
1977The Big Bang ShowThe Speakeasy, Kensington
1977Mothers and Fathers University of NSW Parade Theatre
1977-78, 1983Beyond MozambiqueRita Nimrod Theatre Company
19782001 - A Postcode
1981Catch a Rising StarMelbourne Theatre Restaurant
1982 Zastrozzi Matilda Seymour Centre
1985 Tomfoolery Seymour Centre for Festival of Sydney
1986; 1990 Rough Crossing Natasha NavratilovaPlayhouse Adelaide, Sydney Opera House, Playhouse Canberra
1988 Manning Clark's History of Australia – The Musical Elizabeth Macarthur, St Peter, Caroline Chisholm, Kate Kelly, Lady Carrington. Princess Theatre, Melbourne
1989 Top Silk Jane Fredericks Seymour Centre, Athenaeum Theatre, Melbourne, Canberra Theatre, Playhouse Adelaide
1992 On Golden Pond Chelsea Thayer Marian Street Theatre
1992 Macbeth Lady Macbeth Ensemble Theatre
1993The Sugar MotherCecilia PageBridge Theatre, Coniston & Sydney Opera House
1994 Don't Dress for Dinner Susanne Regal Theatre, Perth, Canberra Theatre, Newcastle Civic Theatre
1998Blinded by the SunGhislane Sydney Opera House
199923 Blooms on My Great Grandmother's RosebushSarahIland Robinson Productions
2001 Up for Grabs Dawn Grey Sydney Opera House, IMB Theatre, Wollongong, Riverside Theatres Parramatta, Playhouse Canberra, Playhouse, Melbourne, Newcastle Civic Theatre
2003Purgatory Down Under Sydney Opera House
2004 The Vagina Monologues University of Sydney
2005 Flatfoot CleostrataAustralian national tour
2006Double ActAlexandra Tuggeranong Arts Centre, Laycock Street Theatre, Peninsula Performance Centre, Manning Entertainment Centre, Sir Henry Parkes School of Art
2007ALP Arts Election Launch Riverside Theatres Parramatta
2008Small Metal ObjectsCarolynInternational tour (USA, Europe & Asia)
2010The Swimming ClubLaura Southbank Theatre, Melbourne, Playhouse Perth, Geelong Westfield Shopping Centre with Melbourne Theatre Company
Vita & Virginia VitaActors Forum
2015Boys Will Be BoysArthur Wharf Theatre with Sydney Theatre Company
2017 Me and My Girl The Duchess of Dene Hayes Theatre Co
2018The Feather in the WebVarious Stables Theatre, Griffin Theatre Company
2022 Love Letters Melissa Gardner Ensemble Theatre
2022 Cinderella [10] Madame (Stepmother) Sydney Lyric Theatre, Regent Theatre, Melbourne with Opera Australia
2024 The Children Dunstan Playhouse with STCSA


Awards & nominations

YearNominated workAwardResult
1987 Jilted Australian Film Institute Awards for Best Actress in a Supporting Role Won
2012 A Moody Christmas Equity Award for Most Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series Won
2001 Up for Grabs Mo Award for Best Female Actor in a Play Nominated [12]
2017 Doctor Doctor AACTA Award for Best Supporting Actress Nominated [13]
2018 Doctor Doctor AACTA Award for Best Actress Nominated [14]

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  1. Dainty, Sophie (22 November 2013). "'Neighbours': Tina Bursill joins cast as Lauren Turner's mother Kathy". Digital Spy . Retrieved 25 March 2014.
  2. "Airdate: One Night | TV Tonight". 7 August 2023. Retrieved 21 December 2023.
  3. https://tvtonight.com.au/2013/09/cameras-roll-on-the-moodys.html
  4. https://10play.com.au/neighbours/articles/tina-bursill-joins-neighbours-in-a-guest-role/tpa190615ifgzu
  5. https://tvtonight.com.au/2017/09/doctor-doctor-brings-tina-bursill-full-circle.html
  6. https://www.news.com.au/entertainment/tv/stars-on-women-aussie-culture-and-life-behind-the-scenes-as-wentworth-heads-into-final-season/news-story/48aa848ea9fa207c6194e28f67ba1834
  7. https://tvtonight.com.au/2021/08/tina-bursill-joins-wentworth.html
  8. https://tvtonight.com.au/2023/02/cameras-roll-on-one-night-new-local-drama-for-paramount.html
  9. https://tvtonight.com.au/2023/12/tina-bursill-proudly-a-difficult-woman-in-strife.html
  10. https://www.4bc.com.au/the-funny-story-that-reversed-cinderellas-and-prince-charmings-roles/
  11. "AusStage". ausstage.edu.au. Retrieved 21 December 2023.
  12. https://www.thesenior.com.au/story/7727093/it-feels-so-good-to-be-bad/
  13. https://www.thesenior.com.au/story/7727093/it-feels-so-good-to-be-bad/
  14. https://www.thesenior.com.au/story/7727093/it-feels-so-good-to-be-bad/