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Who's a lucky girl, then?

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1980-05-24 Daily Mirror composite.jpg

1980-05-24 Daily Mirror.jpg


Lalla's big break

LALLA WARD is no longer just a pretty face in Space. Dr. Who's assistant has landed one of the theatre's great roles — Ophelia in Shakespeare's HAMLET, PRINCE OF DENMARK (BBC-2, 7.15. Sunday).

Will playing opposite Derek Jacobi in this prestigious production be the turning point in her career? Lalla sincerely hopes so.

"I think this must be the most nerve-wracking time of my life," said Lalla. "I don't think I have ever been so wrought up over anything. It means so much to me.

"I feel like writing a letter to Jonathan Miller, who is producing the rest of the Shakespeare series saying: please, please, just look at me and consider me for something else."


The 29-year-old girl who has played Romana, the sidekick to Tom Baker's Dr. Who for more than a year decided it was the right time for a change from the Sci-fi routine.

She will be replaced by an unknown boy actor Matthew Waterhouse and she will be written out of the show by Christmas.

"I found the role in Dr. Who very exciting, said Lalla.

"But, I had been in the part a long time and I felt it was the right time to go because I didn't want to get typecast. There always comes a time when it Is essential to move on to different things.

Her jump into the deep-end of the theatre business has surprised Lalla as much as anyone else.

"When Rodney Bennett, who directs the production, phoned my agent to ask me to audition for the part of Ophelia I thought he had gone stark raving mad.

"My first reaction was to wonder how on earth would a Dr. Who girl be able to make any impression at all at the audition. I knew that dozens of very experienced Shakespearean actresses had been auditioned for the part.

"Although I was elated at being asked, I was very depressed and extremely nervous because I never believed that I would be able to get the part

"When they phoned my agent a second time and asked me to go for a second audition, I nearly didn't go because I thought the situation was so hopeless and a waste of time.

"I didn't hear a word about the results until three days before rehearsals started.

"After such a long time in television and films I feel that at long last I am beginning to get somewhere.

"I only hope that some agent seeing me on Sunday will phone with an exciting job.

"I feel now that I have proved to everyone that I am indeed serious about my acting career." Lalla lives by herself in a London flat with a big black cat for company.

"I am so busy I don't have time for a boy friend. I did get tied up once before with a married man, so I have no intentions of repeating something like that.

Lalla is lucky because she has a rather lucrative sideline to fall back on when she isn't working—she is a skilled artist and has just illustrated a new book on astrology for dogs. But acting is her first love.

"I know I'm a silly dope worrying about what people will think of me as Ophelia, but it is the high point of my career so far. I just hope people will like the way I play her."

Caption: EXCITED: Lalla Ward

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  • APA 6th ed.: Smyllie, Patricia (1980-05-24). Who's a lucky girl, then?. The Mirror p. 14.
  • MLA 7th ed.: Smyllie, Patricia. "Who's a lucky girl, then?." The Mirror [add city] 1980-05-24, 14. Print.
  • Chicago 15th ed.: Smyllie, Patricia. "Who's a lucky girl, then?." The Mirror, edition, sec., 1980-05-24
  • Turabian: Smyllie, Patricia. "Who's a lucky girl, then?." The Mirror, 1980-05-24, section, 14 edition.
  • Wikipedia (this article): <ref>{{cite news| title=Who's a lucky girl, then? | url=,_then%3F | work=The Mirror | pages=14 | date=1980-05-24 | via=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=20 June 2024 }}</ref>
  • Wikipedia (this page): <ref>{{cite web | title=Who's a lucky girl, then? | url=,_then%3F | work=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=20 June 2024}}</ref>