|Born||Kathleen Mary Corkery
17 January 1923
London, England, UK
Trained as a ballet dancer, Raye was discovered by choreographer Freddie Carpenter at age 16. She played lead roles in many musicals and television programs in the UK. UK theatre roles include Funny Side Up, Fun and Games, The Merry Widow, Dear Miss Phoebe, and Ticket of Leave Man. Raye also starred in the 1945 film Strawberry Roan and the 1947 film While I Live.
Raye married in 1951, accompanying her husband as he travelled the world with his work. Raye worked as producer/director for the Kenya Television Service from 1961 to 1964. The family emigrated to Australia in 1964, and Raye worked as an assistant to the General Manager at ATN7 that year, where she devised the idea of a new topical satire TV show.
Starting in November 1964 Raye was one of the three original stars of the highly popular and influential sketch comedy television series The Mavis Bramston Show;with Gordon Chater and Barry Creyton she also produced the pilot episode and co-produced the series (with Michael Plant) until her departure from the program in late 1965. She resumed work on the series for the 1967 and 1968 seasons. The series ended in 1968.
In the 1970s Raye played the ongoing comedy role of much-married socialite Baroness Amanda von Pappenburg in the top-rated soap opera Number 96. After two substantial stints with the series in the 1973–1974 period, Amanda was permanently written-out of the serial, and she switched to the role of Creative Director for the show's producers. This busy role involved the casting of main regular characters, along with reviewing the scripts and storylines of Number 96.
Raye subsequently acted in the medical soap opera The Young Doctors playing the guest role of Rosalie Parker, Dr Jim Howard's mother-in-law to be, in 1977. She was also a regular panellist on Graham Kennedy's Blankety Blanks (1977–1978).
Theatre and Film
In the early 1980s, Raye had a four-year appointment with the Theatre Board – Australia Council. She also appeared in many Australian theatre productions including California Suite, Pleasure of His Company, Travelling North, Merry Wives of Windsor, You Can't Take It With You, Noises Off, and Hay Fever. Raye was a subject of the Australian This Is Your Life series, and a regular on The Mike Walsh Show. She acted in Australian films and TV movies through the 1980s, and has continued to make occasional appearances in television series including Seachange and advertisements into the 2000s.