interview by JANA LETONJA

Actress Hannah New made her debut on the international hit series ‘Bridgerton’, when the series returned for its third season. She is known for her roles as Eleanor Guthrie on ‘Black Sails’ and as Rosalinda Fox in ‘The Time in Between’. Part two of season 3 of ‘Bridgerton’ premieres on 13th June.

Hannah, we can currently watch you in the third season of ‘Bridgerton’. How excited were you to be cast on this hit series?
Beyond excited. I did the most crazy celebration dance when I got the call and my family thought I had lost the plot.

Tell us more about your character and your role in this season.
Lady Tilley Arnold is a confident, independent, sex positive widow. She is a rebel who loves to connect with people who have that same spirit of adventure, and therefore finds a meeting of minds with Benedict Bridgerton.

Have you been a fan of ‘Bridgerton’ before joining the cast?
Yes, I live in a different country to my best friend, but we would watch it at the same time and message each other as we watched.

The series is known for its amazing fashion and costumes. How exciting was experiencing this part of the series?
Every fitting was mind blowing. I had to make sure I had tissues as the tears of joy would come every time I saw a new creation from the amazing costume team.

‘Bridgerton’ will also mark your return to the small screen, after taking some time off for your family. How was it returning to work, after having this family time?
It has been magical to spend this time off with my family. Every time I leave home to go and film is hard, but it is also such a blessing to be playing such a kick-ass role on such an incredible production. My family are incredibly supportive and I’m so grateful for that. And all my colleagues on ‘Bridgerton’ have also been so sweet and supportive on set too, so I’m incredibly lucky to always feel I have support and love around me.

How and when did you develop a passion for acting and performing?
I’m the youngest of three sisters and we would always go on holiday with close family friends who have three kids too, so our cast of 6 would always put on a show at the end of the holiday. I was the youngest out of them all, so I was cast in my first holiday production as a baby and I suppose that is where it all started. I went on to join the National Youth Theatre and then went to university to study Spanish and English Literature. During my time at university, I was constantly doing plays and chose mostly drama modules when I had a choice. I moved to Barcelona when I graduated and studied acting with Frank Feys at The Actor’s Workshop. I started working professionally in TV and film in Spain. The first time I set foot on set I knew that it was where I wanted to be.

As an actress, what challenges and fulfils you the most in this profession?
I’m not the most patient person so it always challenges me when I am waiting to hear back about jobs or see the final product after filming. I can totally identify with the fans of ‘Bridgerton’ who have had to wait so long for the release of season 3. All I can say is the final product is worth the wait on this one.

Besides acting, you are very passionate about exploring other cultures, which led you to visit over 20 countries. What impresses you the most each time you visit a new country and experience a new culture?
I love meeting people and getting to see wherever I am through locals’ eyes, so I always try to get to the restaurants and beauty spots that the people who live there recommend. Or even make contact with local organisations that are working to uplift their communities. This way, I always find travelling to be an authentic and fulfilling experience.

How do you balance work and your personal life?
I do my best to switch off from it all when I am at home. I live on a farm and there is always so much to do that any down time always flies by. I find that immersing myself in nature and being with my loved ones is so grounding and is a great anti-dote to the crazy schedules and travelling.

What can you share with us about your other upcoming projects that you’re working on?
I have just finished writing a children’s non-fiction book called ‘How to Be an Actor and other film and TV Jobs’ with the publisher Nosy Crow. I loved researching it because I learnt about so many jobs that are essential to making film and television that I never get to see. It was a great learning experience for me and I hope it is inspirational to young people wanting to work in the industry. The final text is now with the illustrator, so hopefully I will be able to announce a release date soon.

all photography CODY LIDTKE