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The Independent
26 May 1996, Sunday

Real Life: Page 3

Young British talent: The future of Britain:

For this special issue, we asked the country's leading experts to name the most exciting
newcomer in their field. Here are their choices.

Ladies and gentlemen, we proudly present the most brilliant young people in Britain.
By: Emma Cook, Research by Cayte Williams, Photographs by David Sandison

DRAMATIC ARTS: Victoria Hamilton, 25, actor

Victoria Hamilton received universal acclaim for her role opposite Alan
Bates in Peter Hall's production of Ibsen's The Master Builder at the
Theatre Royal, Haymarket. She won the 1996 Critics Circle Award for best
newcomer. Trained at Lamda, she is currently appearing in As You Like It at
Stratford and is rehearsing the lead part in Troilus and Cressida

The Panel

Robert Butler, theatre critic for the Independent On Sunday Paul Taylor,
theatre critic for The Independent Anne McNulty, casting director for the
Donmar Warehouse. Ellis Jones, vice principal, Rada Adrian Noble, artistic
director of the Royal Shakespeare Company

The Criteria

The key to success, according to Adrian Noble, is "independent spirit,
musicality and emotional depth". Ellis Jones looks for "the resilience to
survive in an incredibly tough world and stay sane".

What the Panel Said

Noble described Victoria Hamilton as "an amazing talent with an incredible
intellect on the stage". Robert Butler also enthused: "She outshone Alan
Bates in The Master Builder, where she had rather a passive role and
breathed life into her character." Paul Taylor also added, "She has a
formidable talent; she makes the pulse quicken."

Commended: Adrian Lester, 27, who left RADA in 1989. Robert Butler said:
"He's a mesmerising actor who fills his characters with a witty lightness
and ease".

What the Winner Says

"The attention has been a constant surprise over the last six months. It's
like a dream being at the RSC." Victoria Hamilton's advice to aspiring
actors is: "You have to want to go into it more than anything else in the
world. And you also need hell of a lot of drive and determination." She
intends to extend her classical repertoire. "If you start off in TV or film
it's difficult to end up doing this sort of work, but if you can crack
classical you can do pretty much anything."

(Submitted by Tara)