Maggie Kirkpatrick

Recent Role:

Star on The Getting of Wisdom


1/29/1941, Albury, NSW, Australia

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  • Credits
  • Biography
  • Margaret Ann Downs was born on 29th January 1941 in Albury, a small town on the border between New South Wales and Victoria, Australia. Only six months later her father, James Downs, was killed whilst on active service as a soldier in North Africa. This tragedy meant that Maggie's mother, Chrissie Downs, had to bring up Maggie and her older brother Adrian all by herself. Maggie grew up in Newcastle on the East coast of Australia. She was early interested in acting and she appeared in several school plays. At the age of fourteen and ten months she quit school simply because she couldn't stand it any more. Her mother than sent her to drama lessons, perhaps mostly to keep her out of mischief. Some years later she got her first professional acting job with John Alden's Shakespeare Company. After that she promptly gave up acting and instead worked with a lot of different things, like working in a dress shop, being a doctor's receptionist, comparing fashion parades and different jobs in bars, restaurants and hotels. During these years she met merchant seaman Norman Kirkpatrick, born in Northern Ireland. They got married in September 1963. Then they moved from Newcastle to Sydney, where Maggie decided to resume her acting career. She appeared in two plays before she again put her career on hold, this time because of the arrival of her daughter, Caitlin. As Caitlin got a little older Maggie continued her work at the theatre, and eventually also on TV and in movies. Maggie is now divorced and she has got two grandchildren, Daniel and Megan. Apart from her acting career she has for a long time been involved in the fight against HIV/AIDS and she has been awarded the Sydney Gay Community's DIVA award for her work.moreless

    Birth Name:

    Margaret Ann Downs



    Birth Place:

    Albury, NSW, Australia

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (24)

    • Maggie Kirkpatrick: (on reruns of 'Prisoner' and the musical) To be honest, I'd really rather have put the whole thing to bed in 1986 when the show ended, but the powers that be don't let that happen. The just keep replaying it, and because I don't get any replay fees, or any residuals for those sales all over the world, I just think, well, this is my turn to make a quid out of it. So I'm perfectly happy to go and do the musical which is absolute shlock but great fun. I mean, who can knock an hour and a half on stage every night with people screaming with laughter? It's great fun.

    • Maggie Kirkpatrick: (on fans) I like to be able to leave the theatre and then go to whatever club or wherever and have a drink with my mates and not be pestered. Fortunately that doesn't matter in Australia because, as you well know, if ever I go to any places along Oxford Street it's just 'oh, that's her'. Which is fine because I am as known to the gay community for doing other things than 'Prisoner'.

    • Maggie Kirkpatrick: (on performing with UK crossover drag legend, Lily Savage in the high camp, tribute piss-take of 'Prisoner') It was heaven. He's so wicked, and clever and I kind of learned to be a straight feed to a comic in that show, because I never quite knew what he was going to do next. He's the master of ad lib. Off he would go on a tangent and I would just deal with that, never trying to compete with that sort of rare comedy, but perhaps just adding to it just by the look. Then he'd veer right back to a cue that was necessary, so I was quite happy to go along with that, and knowing I could get a laugh with just a look was quite gratifying. It was a lot of laughs on and off the stage. We were like a pair of naughty kids together. I had to come home and give my liver a rest!

    • Maggie Kirkpatrick: (on her one woman show 'The Screw is Loose') Actually, at this moment I don't really feel desperately afraid about it, because doing this show is sort of out there somehow in the future. But the days are slipping by and it's going to be here before I know it and there's no turning back now. I've just got to keep on with it!

    • Maggie Kirkpatrick: (on bodily functions) I recently [Agust 2006] underwent a four hour operation to remove a rather nasty little polyp/tumour from my colon.It was a bit of a shock but thankfully it was discovered during a routine colonoscopy and after 20cms of colon was removed, the all clear was malignancy. So, I am recovering extremely well and thankful for my vigilence in matters of health. I share this news with you because I realise that so many people are shy, embarrassed or whatever about discussing bodily functions, particularly matters of the bowel. DON'T BE COY. Bowel cancer is highly prevalent....but can be avoided and indeed cured if caught early enough. Be aware of your bodies....and take apropriate steps with your G.P.if you have any doubts !

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    Trivia (20)

    • Maggie has been in Home and Away twice, the first as Marilyn's aunt Jean, who was a clean freak, and the other as Alf's first love The Guv

    • Maggie entered 'Prisoner' as Joan 'The Freak' Ferguson during episode 287 and remained until the final show, over 400 episodes later.

    • Maggie's first role was as a Witch in 'Macbeth'. She was 20 at the time.

    • Maggie appeared in Australian rock band Silverchair's 'Anthem For The Year 2000' video. Maggie played the robotic figurehead for a futuristic totalitarian government. Interestingly, Silverchair, who hadn't met Maggie before, also come from Newcastle, and attended school with her niece and nephew.

    • Maggie starred in the production 'Truth' at the Jane Street Theatre in 1971.

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