Breakers: profiles


John Atkinson…

Last year, John bought a ticket to Europe, determined to take a long holiday away from Australia. Every time he set a date to leave, however, he was offered more work. Finally, adamant he was going to get there before his ticket expired, he booked a flight the day after his Breakers audition. Then, when he reached Rome, he received a fax from his parents: he'd won the role of Steve and would have to come back.

"Theatre has always been my favourite thing, but I felt this was a good show and I wanted some security for a while to raise my profile," says John. "It isn't Shakespeare but who'd want to do Shakespeare all the time, anyway? It's a great chance to refine my skills and is a great learning experience."

John is one of the most experienced cast members, with a long list of theatre credits, including Romeo and Juliet, Wind In The Willows, Desire and An Indian Summer. In TV, he's most proud of his work in Janus and Corelli, while he's also worked on Blue Heelers, Halifax f.p., State Coroner and Chances. He has appeared on two films, When The Bow Breaks and Defence Ethics.

In Breakers, he's already become very fond of his character Steve. "I like the guy," he says. "He's socially very responsible and while I think like him, I don't do anything about it! He has a dark past, which is something that's very interesting to explore and I've known a lot of guys like him who have come out the other side. I modelled him on a friend. As for his romances, that's been interesting, because you never know where you are from one moment to the next"

…as Steve Giordano

Steve, 28, is the manager and father figure of the homeless kids' agency, Against The Tide which, when we join Breakers, is about to be set up in converted rooms at the back of the building.

To some, especially Eve, Steve seems too good to be true, which is a fair assessment, as he has known his share of homelessness and lawlessness and it was only because of the intervention of someone just like him that he's now around to help others. Steve's own past and his experiences help him to identify with the kids who come to him and help them to accept and trust him as a genuinely sympathetic adult.

His own experiences as a vulnerable youth have left Steve with an abiding hatred of anyone who exploits kids at risk. And that led to one dark incident in his past—an incident which will come back to haunt him.

Steve and Eve find themselves attracted to each other, but their different value systems often get in the way of real relationship.