Ada Nicodemou says Home and Away’s landmark 8000th episode is “just perfect”

ada nicodemou home and away

Ada Nicodemou: “To be part of such an iconic show, I never take it for granted”

Home and Away will hit a huge milestone on March 27, with the series airing its 8000th episode. And for the cast, it’s nothing short of an incredibly mean feat.

For series lead Ada Nicodemou who has starred as Leah Patterson on the soap since 2000, it’s a show that she’s “always been very proud to be a part of”.

“I’ve always been very proud to be part of the show,” Nicodemou said during an interview with Mediaweek.  “I was actually just saying to Ray [Meagher], I remember being at school when the first episode of Home and Away aired, and I was so excited to watch the show. And I’ve always been a massive fan [since then].

“So to now be part of such an iconic show, I never take it for granted. It’s an institution in this country and worldwide, and I’m so proud of the product we produce.”

For Nicodemou, the soap may be full of drama, but “it’s always up with the times”.

“It deals with current issues and it looks great. We have a beautiful backdrop. And I think there’s always a character on the show that everyone can relate to, from all different age groups, and I think that’s really important when you’re watching TV, that you have someone that you can relate to.”

Home and Away has launched the career of some of Australia’s most beloved and talented actors, including the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Chris Hemsworth, Nova 969 breakfast host Kate RitchieWolf Like Me’s Isla Fischer, Heartbeat’s Melissa GeorgeLove Me’s Bobby Morley, Memento’s Guy Pearce, Pretty Little Liars’ Tammin Sursok, King Kong’s Naomi Watts, Babylon’s Samara Weaving, True Blood’s Ryan Kwanten, Five Bedrooms’ Stephen Peacocke and the late Heath Ledger and also made household names of Nicodemou, Gold Logie winner Meagher, Lynne McGrangerEmily SymonsJohnny RuffoJames Stewart and Sarah Roberts to name a few.

The 8000th milestone episode will feature Felicity and Tane’s wedding

Tonight’s landmark episode will feature the highly-anticipated wedding between Felicity (Jacqui Purvis) and Tane (Ethan Zane Brown) — who, after a car accident stopped their first trip to the altar — will see them tie the knot at a traditional Māori wedding, complete with Kaikaranga and traditional poi dancers. 

“It’s a great episode,” the 45-year-old said of the 8000th outing. “It’s a wedding and I think everyone loves a wedding. We like to see some happy endings…I think it’s just perfect. I think it’s a nice payoff for the audience. And to see 8000 episodes, I think it’s nice to celebrate it like that.”

Adding to this, she said the addition of cultural diversity is something that should be celebrated, and while it didn’t start off that way, is now a firm part of the series. For Nicodemou — who is of Greek heritage — it’s a win for Aussie TV.

“I think it’s a really interesting episode to see how a Maori wedding is done as well, obviously there’s a bit of drama,” she added. “I remember when I was young watching TV, there was no one that looked like me. When they put a Greek person on TV, then all sudden it was just smashing plates. It was just so stereotypical. But now, Leah is Greek, sure, but we’re not sort of sitting there talking about her being Greek.”

felicity tane home and away

Felicity (Jacqui Purvis) and Tane (Ethan Zane Brown) on Home and Away. Seven.

Not only that, but tonight’s episode will also tackle a topic which has remained taboo on TV for many years — abortion, something she says is important to open up familial discussions.

“I think that’s why Home and Away has done so well, because throughout the years, we have tackled a lot of sensitive topics through storylines, whether it be abortion or rape, whether it be same sex marriage. All of that stuff has come up and it’s thought that we shouldn’t be talking about it, it’s taboo.

“You can have sort of a family conversation over dinner about how you feel about things as well. I have a child [Jonas, ten] and, a lot of time we’ll be watching TV and stuff comes up and it gives you an opportunity to go, ‘Well, Jonas, how do you feel about this?’

“It also helps someone that might be going through something. If you’re seeing your favourite character goes through it on TV, then I guess you feel more normal or accepted.”

Ada Nicodemou reveals why she has stayed on Home and Away for over two decades

Nicodemou’s Leah has been a staple on the series for over two decades, with no signs of slowing down.

In fact, the actress said that she would play Leah for “as long as they will have me”.

“It’s funny because you say 23 years and I don’t remember my time beforehand, but I don’t also feel like I’ve been there for that long,” she admitted. “I just recently had like two to three weeks off work and God I missed everyone… It’s such a lovely place to work.”

Recently, the actress took to Instagram to call her co-stars “family”, a sentiment she explained further.

“It is like a second family. We’ve all had children, we all know each other’s families and we work really, really hard and enjoy what we do.

“You joke, you laugh, you cry, you tell them everything. I don’t feel like I’m going to work. It’s not a chore and we hang out a lot with people outside of work as well. So it’s just a nice place to be.”

ada nicodemou

The 8000th episode of Home and Away will air on March 27 at 7pm on 7 and 7Plus.

If you, or someone you know, is experiencing a personal crisis or distress, please seek help immediately by calling 000 or one of these services: Lifeline 13 11 14, NSW Mental Health Line 1800 011 511, NSW Pregnancy Choices Helpline on 1800 008 463 or visit

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