Marjorie Johnstone

Marjorie Johnstone

(D. 1992)
At St Margaret’s until 1929

Marjorie Johnstone (nee Mant) was a popular and well-respected actress who with her husband Brian, would go on to open the Johnstone Art Gallery in Brisbane. 

Marjorie completed her senior examination at St Margaret’s in 1929, and in her time at the school was a proto-prefect, prefect and Sports Captain for Bede. She participated in athletics and tennis, won the Senior Art prize in 1928, and shared the prize in 1929. Marjorie was also a committee member of the school dramatic society. She would go on to receive an associateship diploma from Trinity College London in elocution and study music at the Royal College of Music and acting at the Neilson Terry Guild of Art. She would later perform a range of plays, some in the lead role, in London. When war broke out, Marjorie returned to Australia, where, in 1950, she would marry Brian Johnstone.

Marjorie then put aside her acting career in favour of helping her husband open the Johnstone Art Gallery. The gallery served as an art hub in Brisbane and was regarded by some as one of the best galleries in Australia.  It would remain open for twenty years, displaying the works of both well-known and up-and-coming artists. Marjorie and her husband also helped fundraise for the new Twelfth Night Theatre in Bowen Hills next to the Johnstone Art Gallery. Marjorie served as a member of the Twelfth Night Theatre Committee until 1972, when ill health forced her to retire.