Posted by The Celebrity Group on May, 23 2012

Josie Lawrence

Josie is a brilliant comedienne and actress best known for her work with the Comedy Store Players and for her improvisational skills in the television series Whose Line Is It Anyway?. She studied theatre at Dartington College of Arts and received a B.A. Hons degree and in 1996 her college awarded her an honorary degree of Doctor of Arts. Lawrence came to public attention as a regular guest on the Channel 4 improvisational comedy series Whose Line Is It Anyway? at its launch in 1988. A talented singer, Lawrence's speciality on Whose Line was her ability to improvise songs on the spot. In 1991, she had her own short-lived comedy series Josie, also on Channel 4. The next year she starred in Enchanted April a British remake of the 1935 film based on Elizabeth von Arnim's novel. Josie has appeared in numerous theatre productions which include: Moll Flanders in Moll Flanders ( Lyric. Hammersmith ), Lisa Dolittle in Pygmalion (Nottingham Playhouse), Painting Churches with Sian Philips (West End), and Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing (Royal Exchange) for which she recieved the Manchester Evening News award for Best Acterss. Lawrence starred in three series of the improvised comedy series The Masterson Inheritance from 1993 to 1995 on BBC Radio 4 alongside Paul Merton, Phelim McDermott, Caroline Quentin, Lee Simpson and Jim Sweeney. For the Royal Shakespeare Company Josie has performed the role of Kate in the Taming of the Shrew, Dunyasha in the Cherry Orchard, and Helen of Troy in Faust. Josie was in the all female production of Much Ado About Nothing at Shakespeare's Globe Theatre playing the lead male Benedick. In 2001 Josie played Mrs Anna in the King and I at the London Palladium and enjoyed a highly successful nine month run. She has appeared as a guest on the panel show games QI and Never Mind the Buzzcocks. In 2003 Lawrence spent eight months walking across China, Cuba, Peru and Tanzania for Breakthrough Breast Cancer and helped to raise over £550,000. In 2005 she played Mrs. Overall’s evil daughter in Acorn Antiques in the West End. In 2006 she starred alongside Peter Davison in The Complete Guide to Parenting as Phoebe Huntley. She has also recently appeared in the BBC 1 drama series Robin Hood and as Mrs Jiniwin in the 2007 ITV adaptation of The Old Curiosity Shop.

Charity Work

Josie has done a lot of work for charity and in 2005 she climbed Mount Kilimanjaro for Sunfield, a school for children with autism and complex learning needs, of which she is a patron. In 2008, she hosted a VIP-night performance of Hapgood at The Birmingham Rep in aid of Sunfield and raised a further £3,500 for the charity. She is also a supporter of the National Autistic Society's Make School Make Sense campaign. In 2009, Lawrence raised £25,000 for Sunfield by appearing on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire with Meera Syal.