First impressions count so as soon as you see a lustrously blonde Eastern European beauty, you’d be forgiven for mistakenly thinking that you were walking into a Belle Époque café and spotting her ferreted away into a golden stucco corner, an aromatic espresso in one hand and a gourmet meal in the other, delicate yet grand features lit up by beautiful chandelier light from the alfresco ceiling. That was Reka Gavaldi’s life in her birthplace of Hungary, in between meetings with producers and casting directors: lingering, cosy, sedate, efficient and blustery, much like her characters.
Sure enough, platitudes have come hard and thick after punting on her electric potential on screen: ‘professional… positive… focussed… talented… gifted… a joy to be around… energetically released and expressive’ (Jonas McLallen, Producer of Dynamite Productions; Janet Tobias, Filmmaker of Sierra Tango Productions; Eduard Grau, Cinematographer of “No Place on Earth”).
Now Reka has come to Sydney chasing two loves: romance and film. Prior to her worlds-apart arrival mid-2014, she has been engrossed in the Stanislavski method from 2010-2012 in Budapest and was coached by lifetime member Doris Hicks at the famed Actors Studio in Vienna, Austria. Having taken up a sizeable chunk of NIDA space, she has incredibly adapted to the English language and host culture like a black swan to the sky.
If you look at her pictures – in many ways, Reka is more suited to the timeless, monochromatic Hollywood era than today. That said, she is equally an anachronism, suited to carefully pensive colour bursts and contrasts – royal purple, passionate red, neutral white and of course, that pervasively ominous black – as well as visual umbrage and motherly trauma and determination. Indeed, every time Reka is on screen is a transcendent window into her soul. Perhaps Hungary has never really left the girl.