Photography by Ram Shergill
Styling by Margherita Gardella
Written by Daen Palma Huse
We are very proud to announce that critically acclaimed actress and our latest cover star Helen McCrory has been awarded OBE (Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, given by Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth II) for her services to drama in the most recent New Year’s Honours.
Helen McCrory is known for her roles in theatre, film and television – from The Deep Blue Sea at the National Theatre, to Skyfall and Peaky Blinders. Just last year, Helen McCrory was also awarded an honorary degree by the Department of Theatre, Film and Television at the University of York, which reflects her dedication not only to the profession of acting itself but for sharing her knowledge and passion. Her undivided attention to acting in all its forms was most certainly one of the reasons for which she was awarded OBE.
Helen McCrory describes herself as having been very lucky with the roles she has played throughout her career, across TV, film and theatre. From romantic leads such as Anna Karenina, to tongue-in cheek portrayals of Cherie Blair, from working with Reece Shearsmith on Inside No. 9 to playing Queen Elizabeth in the Horrible Histories film Bill. That being said, she does confess that her greatest interest has always been in playing tragedian roles and theatre, something for which she is well known and respected.
Recently, McCrory also played Hester in Terence Rattigan’s The Deep Blue Sea, following her triumphant portrayal of Medea in 2014 – both leading roles at the National Theatre and collaborations with director Carrie Cracknell. Outwardly, they seem very different roles, with one set in post-war Britain, the other in antiquity, one featuring a “fallen” aristocrat, the other a sorceress. Yet both plays centre around a woman who has become an outcast, having chosen to leave their former lives and status for love. They each perceive their lives to have reached a critical moment – one that can only be surmounted through death.
Helen McCrory says “I’ve always been very lucky. As soon as I left college, within a year I was playing leads at The National, and my first TV role was in The Entertainer with Gambon and Billie Whitelaw. I’ve just worked with really good people. But wherever you are you will always come to that ceiling. Everybody has a boss and there is always a room behind a room that you want to get into, but I think for me what I wanted to do more than anything else was theatre. So for me, actually, that’s it – I am living the dream!”
For this shoot, we chose to photograph Helen McCrory at Dennis Severs’ House, 18 Folgate Street, London. The house is a living work of art and a fantastical location that Helen McCrory herself loves to visit from time to time.
The full interview with Helen McCrory by Laura Owen and Daen Palma Huse can be read in the print Issue 2 of The Protagonist Magazine available from www.boutiquemags.com or one of our worldwide stockists.
Hair by Sofia Sjoo using Paul Mitchell
Make Up by Natasha Lakic using Sisley
Nails by Kim Treacy
Styling Assistants Jade Jeboda & Debora Storti
Location Dennis Severs' House
Production by DPH Management