Debra Byrne back in the spotlight

It’s been ten years since her last ongoing TV role, but Debra Byrne is loving her role as Claire Christie, the matriarch in Nine’s Tricky Business.

It was arguably the show’s boldest casting move, paired with Shane Bourne.

“I did some of The Secret Life of Us,” she recently told TV Tonight, “And prior to that I was with Nine in Law of the Land.

“So it’s been a while, but I’ve been doing a lot of theatre.

“But this show is wonderful.”

Since being discovered on Young Talent Time, Byrne is most recognised for her singing, but is known for being able to deliver emotional dramatic performances. She was nominated for an AFI Award back in 1985 when cast alongside Matt Dillon in the film, Rebel.

Asked what had been the most challenging part in playing Claire Christie, she only had praise for the series.

“Nothing. Absolutely nothing. It’s a wonderful role, I love the show. There’s nothing challenging in it, it’s just fun.”

Tricky Business airs 9:30pm Mondays on Nine.


  1. It would be good if she had a bigger part in the show. We hardly ever see her, its all about Gigi Edgely. No wonder she says its not demanding on her. I used to like her on Young Talent Time as I’m the same age as her and followed her progress, but when I read her book I went off her! I also went to see Mary Poppins in Brisbane expecting her to play the part of the Bird lady as she did in Melbourne and Sydney but unfortunately she didn’t. Trick Business is failing so I think Debra and Shane Bourne should be featured a lot more. Maybe we could get to know them much better.

  2. victormuscles

    Hi David, a couple of innacuracies. A patriarch is a male, a matriarch is the female head. Also YTT has been credited a number of times for discovering various entertainers. Debbie Byrne, Rod Kirkham, Jane Scali, Vikki Broughton, Jamie Redfern and perhaps Phillip Gould were the original team members on YTT, however they all started on Brian Naylor and the Juniors which aired up until 1969. I dont know about the other states, but here in Victoria all of those “kids” at the time were household names.

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