ACTOR Petra Yared brings a radiant smile to the serious world of medical litigation in the ABC series MDA.
The 24-year-old Melbourne University student has taken an interest in the Baha'i faith as research for her role as receptionist Layla Young.
She said: "Baha'i is very much about reducing prejudice and having a positive outlook."
She brings her happy, light-hearted approach to the set of MDA, and loves working with the cast, particularly with strong actor and funnyman Shane Bourne.
She said: "He is an even person and always in good spirits".
In her spare time Petra studies contemporary history with a focus on the Arab-Israeli conflict.
She said: "I mostly get recognised at uni, but it took about two weeks for my philosophy professor to realise where he knew me from. It turns out he was a big fan of MDA."
Would the bright young star do anything else to earn a living?
She said: "It's a really good job being an actor. I often catch myself thinking: Are they really paying me to do this? But if I had the grades, I would like to be a doctor. I've always had an interest in medicine."
Her TV credits include regular lead roles in Skytrack Mirror [sic], Neighbours, and an on-going spot in The Genie Down Under.
Her guest appearances include Blue Healers [sic], Secret Life Of Us, Good Guys, Bad Guys and many more.
In 1996, Petra won the AFI Young Actors Award for her performance in the series Mirror, Mirror.
She recently made a foray into film with a role in Blurred (2002) -- the story of teenagers' wild adventures at "schoolies week" on the East Coast.
Petra will holiday in South America while waiting to see if MDA returns for another season.