Marshall Law: articles

Alyson Whyte

The Whyte Way

"I haven't done one of these for age," quips Alison Whyte, her fine frame collapsing into a comfy lounge for our chat at the Melbourne drama studios of the Seven Network.

What Alison hasn't done for some time is a press interview. After winning a Silver Logie in '97 for her level-headed Emma in the ABC spoof Frontline, Whyte appeared as Stella in the second series of Good Guys, Bad Guys, then disappeared from regular TV work.

There were one-off TV roles and a steady stream of theatre work, but then it all came to a halt for another major role—motherhood.

Still wearing the fashion label power suit that fits Marshall Law's Verity like a glove, there are two tell-tale signs that Whyte is very different in real life to the series' perfection-driven Marshall sister. Firstly, she's already replaced Verity's classy high heels for the sort of flatties you'd by at a chemist shop and, secondly, her pantyhose are a mass of ladders.

"Verity is very anal… she's a snob, and I love that, and she's always going to fall, which is great. She's a really good character."

With Frontline's Emma, Whyte's mass of golden-red curly locks were left uncontrolled. With Verity they've been styled and straightened, giving her a demure, Kidman-esque look.

"What have I done?" says Whyte, 34, repeating the question then quizzing herself on what's happened over the past two years. "I've been having a baby (Rose was two weeks old when Whyte auditioned) and stuff," she concludes.

She didn't expect to find herself with a key role in a high profile series at this time of her life, admitting she won the role of Verity, older sister of free-spirited, openly promiscuous Ros (Lisa McCune) in Marshall Law, by accident.

Motherhood, she says, has helped her feel more comfortable about her career. It's one of many things that she and her screen sister, McCune, also a first-time mum, have in common.

"It makes you much more efficient, you can't think about yourself entirely, which I think is really good for an actor, Being a mother, you don't have time to do that."

By Gillian Cumming
September 2002
The Sunday Mail