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CUTTING edge of drama; MEET THE STAFF OF THE EXCITING NEW MEDICAL SERIES HOLBY CITY - JUST WHAT THE DOCTOR ORDERED.



Nicola Stephenson Nicola Stephenson (born July 5, 1971 in Oldham, Lancashire, England) is an English actress. She is known mainly for her roles in television, which include Margaret Clemence in Brookside, Julie Fitzjohn/Bradford in Holby City, Suzie Davidson in Clocking Off  (Brookside): The realistic special effects special effects, in motion pictures, cinematographic techniques that create illusions in the audience's minds as well as the illusions created using these techniques.  on Holby City Holby City is a medical drama television serial transmitted by BBC One. It follows the lives of surgeons, nurses, other medical and ancillary staff and patients at the fictional Holby City Hospital.  hold no qualms for ex-Brooksider Nicola Stephenson.

In fact, she prides herself on being far from squeamish squea·mish  
adj.
1.
a. Easily nauseated or sickened.

b. Nauseated.

2. Easily shocked or disgusted.

3. Excessively fastidious or scrupulous.
 and says brightly: ``I love all that stuff.

"When a friend of mine had four wisdom teeth out, I was desperate to have a look in her mouth and see how it had been done. It's just a fascination. I loved biology at school.''

Nichola plays nurse and single mum Julie Fitzjohn in the new series and says: ``Nursing is the other job I'd do if I wasn't an actress.''

Nicola spent time at a local hospital with Angela Griffin Angela Griffin (born July 19, 1976 in Leeds) is an English television actress. Acting career
She appeared in the popular long-running British soap operas Emmerdale and most famously in Coronation Street as Fiona Middleton from 1993 to 1998.
. ``I talked to Angela about what it was like leaving a soap and encouraged her to have a go because she would get lots of jobs and here we are, a year later, working together.''

Nicola first hit the headlines as Margaret, the Brookside nanny who shared a lesbian kiss on screen with Anna Friel Anna Louise Friel (born 12 July, 1976 in Rochdale, Greater Manchester) is an English actress. Acting career
Friel's acting career began with the role of Beth Jordache on the British Channel 4 soap opera, Brookside
.

But when it came time to leave Brookside, Nicola was happy to go. ``At 22, with no kids, no mortgage and money in the bank, what had I got to lose?'' she asks reasonably.

``I have never wanted a steady life. There is no point in going into a job like this if you are scared of the pitfalls. I like the peaks and troughs of what I do.''

Lisa Faulkner Lisa Faulkner, (born January 2 1973), is an English actress. Faulkner was educated at Tiffin Girls' School, Kingston upon Thames, Surrey.[1]

At the age of 16 she was approached by a modelling scout while she was playing her banjo in a tube station.
 (Brookside): It was a tough round of interviews, a real trial of dedication and commitment, but actress Lisa Faulkner struggled on because she really wanted the job - as a nurse.

The 26-year-old, whose on-screen on·screen or on-screen  
adj. & adv.
1. As shown on a movie, television, or display screen.

2. Within public view; in public.
 nose ring and braided braid·ed  
adj.
1.
a. Produced by or as if by braiding.

b. Having braids.

2. Decorated with braid.

3.
 blonde hair made her one of Brookside's more distinctive residents, was on the verge On the Verge (or The Geography of Yearning) is a play written by Eric Overmyer. It makes extensive use of esoteric language and pop culture references from the late nineteenth century to 1955.  of swopping her acting ambitions for the blood, bed pans and low pay of life in the NHS NHS
abbr.
National Health Service


NHS (in Britain) National Health Service
.

``When I first started acting I got a film and then didn't work for a year,'' says the ex-schoolgirl model. ``The only other thing I could think of doing was nursing, as I was really interested in it. I had been in and out of hospital as a kid and even liked hospital food.

``I wrote to the Whittington Hospital The Whittington Hospital is a British hospital in Archway, Islington, London. It is named after Richard Whittington, and its logo incorporates Whittington's legendary cat.  in north London to apply and got through all the initial interviews. I was due to start my training and then got offered a part in a film.

``It's just as well. I think it was my acting skills that managed to convince them I would be a brilliant nurse. Looking back I don't think I could have dealt with it very well. ''

After playing Dangerfield's daughter, then the troubled Louise in Brookside, Lisa is thrilled to be given the chance to show a totally different side as Dr Victoria Merrick in Holby City.

She laughs: ``I really didn't want to do any more stroppy strop·py  
adj. strop·pi·er, strop·pi·est Chiefly British
Easily offended or annoyed; ill-tempered or belligerent.



[Perhaps alteration of obstreperous.
 teenagers.''

Angela Griffin (Coronation Street): Angela Griffin has swopped scissors scissors

Cutting instrument or tool consisting of a pair of opposed metal blades that meet and cut when the handles at their ends are brought together. Modern scissors are of two types: the more usual pivoted blades have a rivet or screw connection between the cutting ends
 for bedpans to play Nurse Jasmine Hopkins in Holby City.

The former Coronation Street hairdresser laughs: ``I've learned loads of things, even how to put rubber gloves on properly, but the most important thing for me is not only the duties that nurses perform, but they way they act, the way they deal with patients and other staff.''

Angela became a household name playing Fiona in Coronation Street for more then five years, but she remains down to earth about her career.

``I love playing Jasmine, getting this part in Holby City is a great move for me,'' she says.

``When I first announced I was leaving Corrie, no-one seemed to notice at first. It might have been because it was the same day Geri decided to announce her split from the Spice Girls. My story ended up on about page 142.''

Twenty-two-year-old Angela always wanted to be an actress and says: ``It never crossed my mind that I wouldn't do it. I thought about other things I could do if I was out of work, but acting was always the big thing.

``It all started when I pestered my mum to go to a children's theatre group. I remember we used to have to pretend to take different things out of imaginary boxes.''

Her first job came when she was 13 when she played a drummer in the children's book programme Under The Bedclothes. Three years later she made her first appearance in the Street.

``Maybe I was just a strange little girl but being on television never seemed unnatural. Even when I got Corrie I didn't go around thinking `Oh, my God, I've got a job on television.''

Leaving the Street could have been tough but Angela was determined to prove her worth.

``Yes, it was scary,'' she admits. ``But I had to make that leap of faith. It was sad leaving and I did get twitchy twitch·y  
adj. twitch·i·er, twitch·i·est
1. Characterized by jerky or spasmodic motion: the twitchy whiskers of a cat.

2. Nervous; jittery.
 because other people who were going about the same time kept talking about the work they'd got and I didn't have anything.

``I discovered just how many bad scripts there are out there - for one they wanted me to be a Cleopatra in a sit-com. Then Holby City came up and I knew I had fallen on my feet.''

Michael French (Eastenders): Eastenders love rat Michael French was determined to get the research right when he was offered the chance to play Holby City's dashing heart surgeon Nick Jordan.

But he did not reckon on just how much he would have to put his back into it keeping up with the medical teams.

``These guys are on their feet for hours on end,'' he says in admiration.

``If the operation demands it, they will be there from eight o 'clock in the morning until nine o'clock at night.

``I was there observing all the intricate work they were doing and my back started to go long before the end of just one operation. Goodness knows how they must feel doing it day in, day out.''

Michael's need to know took him to the world famous Papworth Hospital in Cambridgeshire where he shadowed a consultant surgeon and a registrar as they performed a heart by-pass and a lung biopsy Lung Biopsy Definition

Lung biopsy is a medical procedure performed to obtain a small piece of lung tissue for examination under a microscope. Biopsy examinations are usually performed by pathologists, who are doctors with special training in tissue
 operation.

``I was watching what they were doing and taking notes,'' he explains, ``but it wasn't only the medical information I needed. I had one eye on the operation and one eye on the way the people in the theatre inter-acted, from the surgeon to the scrub nurse scrub nurse
n.
A nurse who assists the surgeon in the operating room.


scrub nurse A nurse–or technician who participates in a sterile surgical operation, prepares sterile supplies and passes them to the surgeon,
.''

Michael insists he is not phased by the sight of real blood and gore, but does admit he was relieved the green surgical covers disguised the patient, revealing only the open wound where work was being done.

``I do watch what I eat now. I want to stay healthy and look after my body.''

Having won himself a reputation as a screen love rat playing David Wicks in EastEnders, Michael's famously roving eyes are used to good effect in Holby City, with Nick Jordan taking inter-staff relations very seriously.

``I'd say Jordan was more compassionate, more human than David Wicks though,'' he argues.

``Like most blokes, he sometimes treats women as playthings - if they're willing. A bit of hanky-panky is all part of the human condition, after all.''
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Copyright 1999 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Features
Author:McMullen, Marion
Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Jan 9, 1999
Words:1191
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