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In case you think Sons and Daughters' new hunk, former top model Mark Conroy, is simply just another pretty face, please heed the following...

"I'm sure people think: 'Oh, here's another model trying to get into acting' and I think that's unfair. I don't want people to see me as a dummy-model," Mark said.

Behind the good looks of the 27-year-old acting newcomer, who plays Glen Young in the Seven Network series, there's an academic, sporting and much-travelled guy.

Mark has a Bachelor of Social Science degree and began his working life as a social worker. He has also studied art at university, worked as a designer and graphic artist in an advertising agency, once sang in a band, and is also a competent triathlete!

It was his work at the advertising agency which accidentally led him into modelling: "I was offered a job in an orange juice commercial. I turned it down at first - until they told me how much money I was going to get!" he said with a laugh.

Over the past six years Mark has been modelling constantly, not only in Australia, but throughout Europe, London and even Egypt.

"Modelling is a great way to see the world, still be able to live and not spend your own money," he said. "But I can't say I really enjoyed it. There's a lot of glitz and glamor, but after a while it just becomes another job.

"I'd always had a fascination for acting and it eventually became a bug that gnawed at me."

So, in London last year, Mark enrolled in an intensive acting course. Returning to Australia, he continued his studies with method acting, voice production and TV and video workshops.

It all paid off when he was asked to audition for the role of Glen Young in Sons and Daughters.

"It's fab, because I'm learning so much more on Sons and Daughters than I'd ever learn in a class situation. The only trouble is, while I'm learning, they're filming and putting it on TV!" he said.

"It's a real buzz to be doing something positive and using your brain."

On the surface, Glen is a lot like Mark. "Glen's generally a do-gooder and, at the moment, a bit of a super-hero. And for the first few weeks I always seem to be bare-chested and kissing Belinda Giblin!"

In current episodes, Glen and Alison Carr (Belinda), alias Pat the Rat, are having a sizzling romance.

"He's very naive in his dealings with people and he doesn't realise that Pat the Rat is an evil, conniving woman whereas I'm a bit more aware of people's personalities," Mark said.

"But I love working with Belinda. I think she's fabulous, and there's so much to learn from her. She makes me very relaxed."


By: Stephen Cook
Source: TV Week
Date: 12 April 1986


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