“I’ve got faith that it’ll all pick up again so I’m sort of enjoying the quiet time,” she says. “It’s weird, but, for an actor, I have a bit of an introverted side so burying myself into a little hole and pretending the rest of the world doesn’t exist is kind of novel for me.”
However, as for the rest of us, virus-enforced lockdown does have its limits.
“I have just started to reach the cabin-fever stage,” she says. “I’ve been stressing my housemates out a bit with my erratic behaviour – trying to entertain myself and entertain them but being more annoying than anything!”
This week would have seen the start of rehearsals for The 7 Stages of Grieving, Wesley Enoch and Deborah Mailman’s ground-breaking 1995 one-woman play.
The STC show has been postponed until “who knows when” but Sebbens is continuing work on the production from home.
“There are a lot of elements of the show that we can still work on,” she says. “We had a great design meeting today. It’s a bit of a blessing, I guess, to have some more time to work on things. It has been really interesting watching the theatre community adapt to new ways of collaborating and working together.”
She’s also continuing work on Superheroes, which she is directing and is due to open with Griffin Theatre Company in November.
“It’s hard to say, but at the moment we are carrying on like it’s going to happen,” she says. “I’m crossing everything and hoping for the best outcome.”
Meantime, along with colleagues including Tim Minchin, Yael Stone and Kate Mulvany, Sebbens is filming short videos from home for a new STC Virtual series.
So far, she has tackled excerpts from Black Is The New White, The 7 Stages Of Grieving, Stolen and, most recently, a hilarious cameo from Blackie Blackie Brown with Ash Flanders.
“It’s kind of cool just seeing what we can get away with. We don’t actually have to treat it with the same reverence. We can be a bit more lo-fi and have more fun with it. The pretence is gone because we’re sitting in our rooms, looking through a phone screen.”
She’s been getting plenty of positive responses to the whimsical videos, including some less directly focused on her performance.
“I’ve had a lot of comments about my spice rack,” she laughs. “I can’t even take credit for it. It’s actually my housemates’ but they have made me look like a very professional home cook.”
Nick Galvin is Arts Editor of The Sydney Morning Herald