Melanie Araya (Gabby)
Why you were attracted to this play? An actor who’s recently discovered pole dancing, Melanie had never imagined her two passions would come together. “I thought if I was lucky I’d probably get a role as a pole-dancing stripper in the background of some underground crime show. But when I saw the audition notice for this play, I knew this was it.”
Why will audiences love this show? “I think the audience will see themselves in this show. All six women come from different backgrounds, with completely different stories… Everyone has found themselves in an awkward situation with people they don’t really know, and somehow, tried to laugh it off like these women.”
Melanie Araya is an actress and dancer well described for her confidence, dedication and quirky character. Melanie has trained as an actor at NIDA, ATYP and The Actors Hub, and graduated from Metro Screen with a Diploma in Screen and Media in 2014. In 2012, Melanie co-founded, produced and acted with youth theatre company Mon Sans Productions. Her credits with Mon Sans Productions include Dog Sees God (2012), Not a Word (2013), A Broken Law (2014). Melanie’s passion for diverse storytelling is reflected in her involvement with the Powerhouse Youth Theatre, and most recently, working on Spanish short horror film Desenmascarado (Unmasked) with Sydney Film School. Melanie’s interest and passion for physical theatre and movement led her to pole dancing in March 2014.
Kaitlin DeLacy (Faith)
Why you were attracted to this play? The Naked Truth was so vibrant I fell in love with it immediately. It shows the struggles of real women and real friends. It doesn’t pretend to be anything it’s not, it portrays people as how we are in real life. We swear, we get angry, we talk about sex and love and relationships. It’s raw and real and ultimately heartwarming.
Why will audiences love this show? People are going to love The Naked Truth because, we’ve all been there done that. Maybe not pole dancing, but we’ve all had a go at something we were just not any good at and it’s great to be able to watch the women in this play just give it a go. It’s funny, it’s heart warming and most of all it’s real.
Kaitlin DeLacy has studied extensively at the National Institute of Dramatic Arts, Actors Centre Australia, Actors College of Theatre and Television and Darlo Drama. She has also studied abroad at London’s prestigious Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts where she completed the Shakespeare Summer School in 2012. Her theatre credits include Five Women Wearing the Same Dress (Act IV), which she also produced, Dancing at Lughnasa (Rosie), The Small Poppies (Clint), The Crucible (Mary Warren) and Who’s Afraid Of The Working Class (Trisha).
Hayley Flowers (Trisha)
Why you were attracted to this play? “The show celebrates women – rare in our current industry –and it explores the complexities of women’s relationships. Having an all female cast and crew also is something rare in theatre in Sydney and that camaraderie lured me.”
Why will audiences love this show? “I lost a close friend to Leukaemia and have many close friends and their families fighting for their lives with cancer at the moment which makes being part of this play so much more relevant and meaningful. But audiences will love the show because it’s not just poignant but very, very funny! Eight women of all different shapes and sizes attempt to swing around poles for very different reasons, well, who wouldn’t want to see that?!”
Hayley Flowers is a graduate from The University of Wollongong, completing a Bachelor of Performance Degree in the Faculty of Creative Arts. Hayley has also completed a Bachelor of Teaching in Drama and English (Secondary) through Charles Sturt University. Hayley is a skilled singer and has toured with several NSW bands. Hayley is also the co-creator of award winning comedic web series Hei and Lo. Hayley took out the 2015’s LA WEB FEST Outstanding Achievement Award for “Best Lead Actress in a Drama” and the series was nominated for “Best Script Writing”. Hei and Lo was also in the official selection for screening at the festival and was further nominated in highly competitive International Academy of Web and Television Awards in Las Vegas.
Jeannie Gee (Sarah)
Why you were attracted to this play? “The humour is also very familiar to me. I love the journey of my character, but I also like the fact that there’s an important underlying message… That appearances are very deceptive – we only have to scratch the surface to see that there is far more to each of us than may be initially apparent.”
Why will audiences love this show? “I’m pretty sure there will be moments that create belly laughs and maybe even a few tears and no doubt, some poignant moments that I suspect most women (and even some men) will be able to relate to.”
Jeannie studied drama in schools in the UK and Australia and, she still enjoys taking classes and learning different techniques at every opportunity. Some of her recent theatrical credits include: George’s Marvellous Medicine;Brother Daniel;Book of Days; Dying For It; Equus; The Vagina Monologues;Cat On A Hot Tin Roof; Sunshine Boys; Cosi; Bombshells;Charitable Intent; and Women Behind Bars. She has a number of short films and US television series to her credit and her face often pops up in television commercials. Jeannie is also a trained clown, working mainly with special needs children through Variety, the Children’s Charity; where she is also privileged to serve on a number of committees – and, she is a member of Actors Equity (MEAA).
Melinda Ryan (Bev)
Why you were attracted to this play? “There just aren’t enough great plays for women being staged. The Naked Truth is something I’d go and watch so if nobody else is doing it, I figure I’ll do it myself! I watched my aunt die from ovarian cancer so I was determined that through this show we could give something back to charity and raise awareness of women’s cancers.”
Why will audiences love this show? “It’s real women, who talk, swear, love and laugh like real women. It’s filthy, it’s hilarious and it’s got heart. What’s not to love?”
With extensive training at NIDA, Actor’s Centre Australia, Darlo Drama and Improcorp (Lyn Pierse), Melinda is an experienced stage actor appearing in numerous plays including Five Women Wearing the Same Dress (Trisha) for Act IV, Love Song (Joan) for Gamut Theatre Co, The Jungle (Cynthia Page), Money and Friends (Vicki), Dancing at Lughnasa (Kate), The Girl with Red Hair (Ina) at Darlinghurst Theatre (Darlo Drama) and Antony and Cleopatra (Cleopatra) at Manly Vale Community Centre. Mel is also co-director of Gamut Theatre Co. Her production credits include John Kolvenbach’s Love Song for Gamut and Five Women Wearing the Same Dress and The Naked Truth for Act IV.
Wendy Winkler (Rita)
Why you were attracted to this play? “Finding stories that have majority roles for women is often tough – and ones that give the audience a good laugh and are fun to play are even tougher… but this one fit the bill perfectly. At our first table read we were all giggling and that solidified this play being the right fit for our company. The role of Rita is interesting to delve into – she’s got some characteristics of a myriad of women in my life and then a whole host that are new and exciting to get to create and explore. Plus working with a bunch of fab gals is truly a gift…”
Why will audiences love this show? “Want to know what a bunch of women really talk about in their own company? Ever signed up for a gym or dance class and then thought ‘what the hell have I done?’ Yes? Then you’ll have a right old laugh at this story! These gals are ballsy and it’s all out on the table so brace yourself for an hilarious ride!”
Wendy first found her love of the stage with roles in the musical theatre classics The Music Man, The Sentimental Bloke and Guys and Dolls. As part of the Criterion Players she has had roles in the music hall comedies True Blue Aussie Revue (solo singing and monologues as well as chorus) and Rome Sweet Rome (as Muesli). Her love of contemporary American Theatre has been showcased before an audience in scenes from Doubt, Rabbit Hole and Closer, while her Shakespeare credits include the roles of Rosalind from As You Like it and The Doctor in Macbeth. She has studied part-time at NIDA, Darlo Drama, ImproCorp (Improvisation) and ACA (Shakespeare and American Theatre). Last year Wendy produced and starred as Georganne in Five Women Wearing the Same Dress for Act IV.