12 July 2022
Maddie Dunne (2011) is a journalist working as a senior producer for Good Morning Britain in the UK. She started out in the TV industry as a reporter for 7 News Adelaide before moving to London in 2019 where she’s worked for the BBC, ITV and Al Jazeera.
What is your favourite memory of your time at Pembroke?
Literally just anything to do with theatre. I wasn't overwhelmingly good at it, but I loved it. Performing in the 2008 production of Cabaret the musical was a treat – I was only in the chorus, much to the dismay of my 14-year-old over-inflated ego – but it was a total riot and really deepened what is now a burning and everlasting love for the arts. I also reflect fondly upon my successful campaign for the return of 9 Wright's tute cake after Madame Aurelien banned it for an entire term (we were very naughty and absolutely deserved it).
What is your biggest career highlight?
Television is an annoyingly fun industry to work in, so the highlights aren't in short supply. To name a humble few: producing prime-time bulletins for 7 News, attending the BAFTAs, launching a now highly-successful BBC morning programme from scratch during lockdown, working with icons like Jamie Oliver, Daniel Radcliffe and David Schwimmer... And the up-close experiences with some truly incredible creatures as 7 Adelaide's self-appointed 'chief animal reporter'. Wombats are cuddlier than you think.
How did Pembroke prepare you for your career as a Senior Producer at ITV's Good Morning Britain in the United Kingdom?
I was a nerdy, book-loving oddball when I moved to Pembroke in Year 8, which could have led to a pretty tough few years navigating high school. Thankfully, it was essentially considered cool to love your lessons and I could unashamedly throw myself into novels and plays and everything in-between – which subsequently meant my writing and language skills blossomed. I'm so lucky Pembroke allowed me to explore those passions with pride.
Who was your favourite teacher at Pembroke and why?
Choosing just one is a crime! Donna O'Connor, for her devilishly dry humour. Mr Woon and Wendy Lacoon, for being total gems who made lessons feel like holidays. Julianne English, for inspiring that lifelong love for theatre. And Malcolm Lamb, for being Malcolm Lamb.
What is the biggest risk you have taken?
Quitting what was then my dream job as a reporter at 7 News and moving to London with no guarantee of work or a house – and then staying in 2020 as the world crumbled. That, or singing an Adele song at a school music concert. Very ambitious of me. Definitely didn't pull it off.
What do you do to relax?
Some people see London as fast-paced and overwhelming, but I think it's filled with all sorts of relaxing adventures. Strolls on Hampstead Heath, buying groceries at Borough Market, perusing the Tate galleries, a glass (or bottle) of wine along the canal in Hackney Wick, lazing around Victoria Park... Or when all else fails, booking a dirt-cheap flight to Europe and gallivanting around Italy for a couple of days.
What is something that you are passionate about?
Cooking! Fresh pasta won't solve your problems but it certainly makes them easier to carry.
Name a dish that reminds you of your childhood...
The Wah Hing's pei pow tofu. A huge chocolate milkshake from Cafe Bravo. My mum's (Royal Adelaide Show award-winning!) pavlova. My friend Pip's mum's lasagna (a sleepover staple). Or chips and gravy from the corner shop.
What do you miss about Adelaide?
Less importantly: La Sing karaoke bar, the Adelaide Fringe, fantastic seafood and cheap mangoes. More importantly: my family, my friends, and my fat ginger cat Henry. He's 17!
If you could have coffee with anyone in the world, who would it be?
Harry Styles. Always Harry Styles.