Madeleine Sami is a huge fan of Bake Off and takes up a proud position of host, alongside newfound-bestie Hayley Sproull.

Madeleine is an accomplished actor. She got her start playing a multitude of characters in award winning plays No2 and Bare. She has starred in some of New Zealand’s most successful film comedies including, Sione’s Wedding and Taika Waititi’s Eagle vs Shark and What We Do in The Shadows. She has numerous TV acting credits including Outrageous Fortune, The Jaquie Brown Diaries and Jane Campion’s series Top of the Lake. She’s also set to appear in TVNZ 1’s gripping new psychological thriller The Bad Seed, airing in 2019.

Over the last few years, Madeleine has been moving into directing, most recently finishing her own hit feature film The Breaker Upperers which she co-directed and starred in alongside Jackie van Beek.

What made you sign up for The Great Kiwi Bake Off?

I am a huge fan of the British version. It’s one of my favourite TV shows and it was actually a secret dream of mine to host it. When the opportunity came up to work on the Kiwi version I literally squealed with excitement. I’m stoked.

You and Hayley have a great on-screen chemistry. Did you know each other before filming?

No! We had done a couple of little things together but we became fast friends on the show. I would say we are bonded for life now.

How have you found working with Sue and Dean?

I’ve loved every minute of it! They are both a perfect mix of professionalism and naughtiness.

How has Bake Off affected your waistline?

OMG! My waist line has suffered. I would fast before each Bake so I could munch on all the delicious treats. This was my attempt to control my waistline. It didn’t work!

Why do you think Bake Off is such a popular format?

I think it’s a very sweet (literally and figuratively) natured show. People tune in because they want to see some talented people make some yummy things. I think you get drawn in to the personalities of the bakers and you want to become their friends.

What have you enjoyed most about working on Bake Off?

Getting to know the contestants has been a joy. They are all so sweet and kind. Being silly with Hayley was also a lot of fun. I have no idea how they are going to cut it all together!

How would you rate your own baking?

I don’t do it often. I think I baked a dairy free banana cake in 2012. It was pretty good.

Sweet or savoury?


Describe Bake Off in three words…


Have you been taking on any baking tips while working on the show?

Oh hell yeah! I got a couple of the contestants’ recipes and gave them a go. My attempts were not complete disasters!