The Latest From Ryan Moloney: Joining Bronia Buchanan’s BBA Management and the Return of Neighbours
Ryan Moloney is a familiar face for soap lovers. Having played Toadie in Neighbours since 1995, families have grown up alongside his character — a firm favourite on our screens. Over the years, Ryan has evolved his much-loved character from a troubled teenager and class clown to the lawyer Toadie is today.
Since Neighbours announced the show would return to screens this year, Ryan has spent recent months filming for the popular television programme. But with eyes on the UK entertainment market, the Australian actor has also landed his first UK talent agent: Bronia Buchanan’s BBA Management.
Here’s the story of Ryan’s acting career to date, from performing in his first musical at age eight to working with talent agents in both Australia and the UK.
Becoming An Actor
Ryan first got into musical theatre when he was eight. A musical company came to his school to recruit children for a production of Oliver! Most of the children wanted to get involved, including Ryan. “We had a great time doing that,” he says.
After performing in Oliver! Ryan joined the Merilyn Brend Children’s, Teenagers, and Adults Theatre Company (MBCTA), where he performed in comedies. Ryan and his peers “learnt to entertain close up and to ad-lib and [about] comedy timing.” As a result, he “got an amazing training and experience from a very young age.”
Landing A Role on Neighbours
A few years later, when Ryan was 15, he landed a role on Neighbours. Quickly becoming popular with viewers, Neighbours promoted Ryan to the regular cast. “I’ve been here since and I was only meant to be here for one scene,” Ryan says.
Leaving home at 17 for the first time, Ryan found the crew at Neighbours “such a guiding influence. They guided me into life and professionalism and how to do this job and how to do it the best you can, they gave me my real grounding in this industry.”
Given that he’s been acting professionally since he was a teenager, many people ask Ryan how he found growing up in the public eye. To this, Ryan says: “I don’t know. I haven’t done anything different. But I’ve had an amazing abundance of experiences.”
Although there are challenges with “being noticed wherever you go” and “a lack of privacy,” Ryan is glad that he “leads a very different life to most people” and has been able to “create a pretty amazing life for our family as well.”
Advice For Budding Actors
Ryan has some important tough love to pass on to new actors who are breaking into the industry.
“Don’t get too big for your boots,” he says. “Pull your head in. Realise that the wardrobe staff work harder than you do. They’re there before you are. They leave after you, and they get paid a lot less. So be polite and courteous and professional to everybody.”
As a bonus piece of advice, he suggests that actors “learn a thing or two about tax and perhaps put some pennies away for when you will be unemployed.”
Signing With Bronia Buchanan’s BBA Management
Around a year ago, although Ryan already had a talent agent in Australia, he sought representation in the UK too. The UK has many high-level acting opportunities on offer, and Ryan was keen to break into this market.
Researching agencies, he found several with as many as 30 agents representing actors. He felt that, at an agency like this, he may become “just another number.”
But then his agent in Australia put him in touch with Bronia Buchanan’s London-based talent agency BBA Management. Straight away, Ryan knew he’d found “a nice, honest, growing, emerging agency.”
“My agent in Australia put me into contact with BBA and we had a chat. They sounded lovely and I’m of that vibe, I go for a gut feeling, if I feel like you’re going to do a good job and I can trust you, then I’m sold.”
Ryan signed with BBA Management around the time that he came to the UK for the Neighbours Celebration Tour. “I was really excited about actually coming in and doing a whole bunch of work in the UK, and working with BBA and seeing where it took us,” he says.
Working With Bronia Buchanan’s BBA Management
A year into his journey with BBA Management, Ryan says that “all communication with them has been absolutely lovely. They communicate in such a prompt and professional way. If you’ve got any questions about anything, any one of the team is going to get back to you.”
Ryan explains that rather than agents handling individual actors, all the BBA Management agents support all actors. “That aspect really spoke to me. They all work together, and they’re all lovely.”
The BBA Management agents — who include senior agents Gails Fox and Sarah Sparrow — have begun the process of securing acting gigs for Ryan, although he’s now back working on Neighbours. “We were starting to get some little fires burning and starting to forge forward with a couple of opportunities,” Ryan says.
However, Neighbours then announced the show would return and Ryan put additional acting plans on hold to return to his role as Toadie. Ryan will work with BBA Management to secure additional cameo work in the UK when he isn’t filming for Neighbours. In future, he’s open to pursuing more stage work too.
The Difference Between Acting for Screen and Stage
Ryan has plenty of acting experience, both on screen and on stage. But these are two different experiences. “On stage, you’re doing the same thing over and over again,” Ryan says. “It’s the same story. It doesn’t change.”
Another key difference between acting on screen and on stage is that on stage, actors can adapt their performance in line with how the audience is reacting. “It’s either a more sympathetic audience, or a more distant audience.”
“I love the live aspect,” Ryan says. “I love that there’s that immediate connection.” In theatre, “the audience member is right there with you. There’s no director or editor in between us. It changes that end product. I can see whether or not it’s affecting you and touching you, I’m trying to get you to love me, to hate me, to feel any kind of emotion.”
“When I act for television and film I do it exactly the same way and imagine that there is an audience member on the other end and that’s typically the director. So they’re my audience member.”
Another difference is the time that actors have to prepare for their performances. Although actors need to learn lines for both screen and stage work, Ryan explains that television actors have nowhere near as much time to prepare.
“Having been on Neighbours for quite a long time I learn lines in maybe two or three goes, I pick things up pretty quickly. And we work at a pretty hectic rate.”
“When it comes to doing theatre, some productions are rehearsing for a month. I’m like, ‘whoa, gosh, are we still here?’” By comparison, when Ryan had a lead role in a panto, he had to rely on his understudy to fill in whilst he was away filming, and then had just two days to learn his role.
Getting Into Character
Ryan explains that as you “get older and life keeps throwing more curve balls at you, you have to appreciate things from different perspectives.” The more he learns, the more he brings his experiences into his storytelling.
“I want to take people on richer journeys, I don’t want surface-level storytelling. I want to be able to grab an audience and take them on a complete journey and make them feel things that they didn’t know that they could even feel.”
“That’s my ultimate goal, to show how screwed up things can be and how messed up an individual can be. I really wallow in that for a while and allow the audience to go in there with me.”
Winning Multiple Soap Awards
Although Ryan has won the Best Daytime Star Award at the Inside Soap Awards multiple times and been nominated for several other awards, he explains that he gets “more joy out of meeting somebody and knowing that a story spoke to them.”
“It’s nice to get that recognition for an award win, but somebody’s reaction to seeing you when they show genuine love and appreciation, that speaks to me more.”
Ryan also considers each contract that he gets “better than an award” because it’s a recognition of the fact that he’s “been doing a great job” and the programme wants to keep him on.
Ryan’s Biggest Acting Challenge
Ryan explains that Australia has a different acting market from the UK. In Australia, “I didn’t even have an agent until Neighbours was finishing up.” (Although, of course, the show is now coming back for a new series.)
Having been his own agent for years, Ryan knew it was time to get an agent, both in Australia and in the UK. But because of his prominent name in Neighbours, some agencies “thought it was going to be too much of a rebranding exercise for them” to sign him.
Although this posed a challenge for Ryan, the situation also opened the door to joining BBA Management and entering the UK entertainment market. “I was excited about coming out to the UK because I think there’s a lot of opportunity here.”
With this experience in mind, Ryan advises actors “to be humble and try to keep learning because there’s just so much to learn constantly.”
Ryan — And Toadie’s — Future on Neighbours
Ryan is now starting The Director’s Attachment Scheme for Neighbours. This industry incentive enables emerging directors to develop their craft. “I’m really, really looking forward to it,” Ryan says.
Meanwhile, Ryan has enjoyed playing Toadie in the new series of Neighbours. “We’ve taken him to a much more complex space. The levels of emotion are more mature “I’m really enjoying this kind of acting and this style.”
About Bronia Buchanan’s BBA Management
BBA Management represents a boutique list of actors and creatives from a diverse range of backgrounds. These actors and creatives play key roles in a host of films, television programmes, and theatre productions.
Led by Bronia Buchanan, BBA Management’s team of agents ensure all actors and creatives receive high-level support and guidance, allowing them to secure ideal opportunities for their career goals. Each client receives the agents’ personal time and attention and can always speak directly to a member of the team.
BBA Management has fostered long-term relationships with notable casting directors and producers around the world. Through these relationships, the talent agency helps clients land roles and positions across the entertainment industry.
Aside from Ryan, actors that BBA Management represents include Priyasasha Kumari, Carly Burns, Maureen Hibbert, Neelam Bakshi, Nish Nathwani, Riley Jones, Viss Elliot Safavi, and Davina Dewrance.
In some of these actors’ latest news, Nish Nathwani is playing Hanson in season four of Breeders and Maureen Hibbert is playing Mrs Sanderson in season three of Jack Ryan. Meanwhile, Viss Elliot Safavi and Davina Dewrance appear in series 13 of Not Going Out (as Miss Benesar and Olly’s mum, respectively). And Carly Burns will play Donna in the upcoming feature film A New Breed of Criminal.
Learn more about the actors that Bronia Buchanan’s BBA Management represents.