Orla Brady

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Orla Brady
Born (1961-03-28) 28 March 1961 (age 54)
Dublin, Ireland
Occupation Actress
Years active 1991–present
Spouse(s) Nick Brandt (2002–present)

Orla Brady (born 28 March 1961) is an Irish actress.

Early life[edit]

Orla Brady is the second of four children born to Patrick and his wife Catherine. She lived in Bray, Co.Wicklow from birth until the age of seven.[1] She was educated at a Loreto Convent in Wicklow and an Ursuline Convent in Dublin.

At 25[2] years of age she moved to Paris where she studied at the L'École Philippe Gaulier, securing a place at the École Internationale de Mimodrame de Paris (founded by Marcel Marceau).


Brady began her career with Balloonatics Theatre Company, touring productions of Hamlet and Finnegans Wake. She then returned to Dublin to perform at the Gate Theatre[3] where she played Adele in House of Bernarda Alba and Natasha in Three Sisters. After moving to London she played Kate in Brian Friel's Philadelphia, Here I Come! which later transferred from the King's Head Theatre to the West End.

Brady's first professional work in England was in Blinded by the Sun by Stephen Poliakoff at the Royal National Theatre[2] and she has since developed a career based on both Irish and British located theatre, television and film. These have included the RTÉ/BBC co-production A Love Divided where she portrayed Sheila Cloney, for which she won the 1999 Golden Nymph Best Actress Award at the Monte-Carlo Television Festival.[4] She also played one of four main characters in the BBC's drama series Mistresses, Siobhan Dillon, a lawyer who struggled to maintain her relationship with husband Harry while also having an affair with her colleague, Dominic, with whom she later went on to have a child. As well as that, she has appeared in RTÉ's Proof, and had roles in films such as Words Upon the Window Pane (1994), The Luzhin Defence (2000), How About You (2007) and 32A (2007).

Since moving to Los Angeles in 2001, Brady has also appeared in Family Law where she played Naoise O'Niell. The series ran for 3 years on CBS. She has also starred in Nip/Tuck, a US drama about plastic surgeons where she played Dr. Jordan. She later starred in Shark as Claire Stark, the divorced ex-wife of James Woods. In 2008 she appeared in Firewall, and the second episode of the BBC series Wallander.[5] She also appeared as Meredith Gates, a fleecing art collector who herself is conned in the first series of the British series Hustle.

Commencing in 2009, Brady portrayed Elizabeth Bishop, the wife of Walter Bishop and the mother of Peter Bishop in the Fox television series Fringe.[6] In 2010, she appeared in the TV series The Deep alongside James Nesbitt where she played Catherine. She also starred in the TV series Strike Back as Katie Dartmouth.

In 2012 she appeared in the ITV series Eternal Law as Mrs Sheringham, an angel who fell in love with a human and became mortal. She also currently stars in the Sky1 series Sinbad where she plays Taryn. In late 2013 she appeared as the Countess Vera Rossakoff in the television adaptation of The Labours of Hercules, part of the final series of Agatha Christie's Poirot alongside David Suchet.

On 25 December 2013 Brady starred in the 2013 Christmas special episode The Time of the Doctor of the hit BBC science-fiction series Doctor Who as the pivotal character Tasha Lem. In 2014, she filmed Banished, playing Anne Meredith.

She is currently appearing in the AMC martial arts drama series Into the Badlands as Lydia.

Photographic model[edit]

Jack Vettriano, The Singing Butler, 1992

In the late 1980s Brady posed for a series of photographic figure studies that were published in The Illustrator's Figure Reference Manual (1987). An image of Brady posing in her own dress was used by the artist Jack Vettriano as the focal subject of The Singing Butler.[7][8]

Personal life[edit]

In 2001 Brady moved to Los Angeles where she met an English photographer, Nick Brandt, whom she married in December 2002 at Chyulu Hills, Kenya. She currently lives in Los Angeles and London. She has previously stated she does want to have children. Identifies as an atheist, once describing former Pope John Paul II as a "voice for evil".


  1. ^ Interview with Miriam O'Callaghan on RTÉ Radio 12 January 2014
  2. ^ a b Philby, Charlotte (2008-01-05). "How Do I Look?: Orla Brady, actress, 46". The Independent. Retrieved 2008-05-09. 
  3. ^ "Biography". orlabrady.org. Retrieved 2008-05-09. 
  4. ^ [1], www.broadcastnow.co.uk. Retrieved on 7 November 2013.
  5. ^ BBC One Programmes: Wallander, bbc.co.uk. Retrieved on 30 November 2008.
  6. ^ Meet Mrs. Bishop: Orla Brady Joins 'Fringe'[dead link]
  7. ^ Jack Vettriano.com, Profile of Orla Brady
  8. ^ The Guardian, 4 Oct 2005, Vettriano brought to book by illustrator's manual

External links[edit]