Young Sheffield actor gains place on prestigious National Youth Theatre course

A young Sheffield actor is hoping to fund herself through the prestigious theatre course she has just won a place on with the help of a video based on one of the stand-out moments of smash-hit musical Hamilton.
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Abby Russell, aged 23, of Crookes, is one of just 16 young people on the National Youth Theatre’s (NYT) REP Company for 2020, a once in a lifetime opportunity that will see her perform three shows with some of the best new talent in the UK.

Abby is currently working 12 hours a day, six days a week in a Sheffield call centre so she can support herself while on the course, but still needs more in order to survive in London and fully concentrate on her training and performances.

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With the help of a few creative friends, Abby had the idea of writing and performing in a video based on one of the most memorable numbers from Lin-Manual Miranda’s hip-hop musical Hamilton, with Abby playing the role of the pompous, preening British King, George III.

She hopes the video will be shared far and wide, generating donations and maybe even getting noticed by influential people in the acting world.

Abby said she ‘lives and breathes’ acting and performance, and that getting on the NYT REP course had been ‘a dream come true’.

She said: “I won’t be able to continue working at all due to the intense nature of the course and I am also relocating to London where I will have to rent accommodation and pay for all utilities.

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“I understand that it is a big ask for people to donate hard-earned money, but I assure you that every penny will go towards my living costs.

“Even if you can’t donate, please share the page. They say everyone is only six people away from a celebrity. You never know who might see it!”

Abby said that she chose the Hamilton performance after seeing the musical earlier this year and falling in love with it, performing the role in front of her Forres Road house much to the bemusement of her neighbours.

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