In the early 90s actor Kieren Hutchison was part of Shortland Street’s first generation, as Jonathan McKenna, the medical student who broke ground on Kiwi television as a gay character. Starring roles in locally made adaptations of William Tell and Swiss Family Robinson were a springboard to his move to Los Angeles in 2004. Hutchison scored recurring roles in the second seasons of One Tree Hill (as professor Andy Hargrove) and Wildfire, plus guest roles in Charmed, Grimm and Castle. In 2009 he starred as the love interest in Hallmark cable TV movie Flower Girl. He married US actor Nicole Tubiola in 2003.
The fact that Jonathan is gay is secondary. He's just one of the gang. I enjoyed playing him like that because it breaks down stereotypes. Kieren Hutchison on playing Jonathan McKenna on Shortland Street, The Evening Post, 9 September 1996
When a show has been in production for over 25 years, the odd mistake is to be expected — as this assemblage of Shortland Street bloopers demonstrates. - Angela Dotchin invents a new word - Angela Bloomfield gets confused over who she's talking to - Peter Elliott almost gets hit by part of the set - Peter Elliott manages to stay in character after Tandi Wright hits a pot plant - John Leigh performs miracles on a sick dog - Peter Elliott has some bother with Elizabeth McRae's cheque - Michael Galvin hurts his leg - Roy Snow gets his cords confused - Theresa Healey has a bumpy kiss - Paul Ellis's face is grabbed by a baby - Ido Drent announces he's pregnant - Craig Parker hits a pot plant - Mr Whippy distracts Nisha Madhan - Angela Bloomfield fluffs her line - Angela Bloomfield battles dialogue and weapons - Lee Donoghue forgets a line - and more!
Iconic serial drama Shortland Street is based around the births, deaths and marriages of the staff, family and patients of the eponymous hospital. This 1994 cliffhanger episode, written by Rachel Lang, features the wedding between receptionist Kirsty and muffin man Lionel. But will hunky Stuart be able to deny his love for Kirsty? Countless familiar characters appear; and three actors who have since launched Hollywood careers — Temuera Morrison, Martin Henderson, and Marton Csokas — as Dr Ropata, Stuart Neilson, and Leonard Dodds respectively.
Shortland Street is a fast-paced serial drama set in an inner city Auckland hospital. The long-running South Pacific Pictures production is based around the births, deaths and marriages of the hospital's staff and patients. It screens on TVNZ’s TV2 network five days a week. In 2017 the show was set to celebrate its 25th anniversary, making it New Zealand’s longest running drama by far. Characters and lines from the show have entered the culture — starting with “you’re not in Guatemala now, Dr Ropata!” in the very first episode. Mihi Murray writes about Shortland Street here.