Showbiz: Heroes and heroines of the performing arts

Joanna Harvey profiles three individuals who have made a dramatic impression in the performing arts
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The Independent Online

Art Malik, B. 1952

Actor Art Malik was born in Bahawalpur, Pakistan on 13 November 1952. His family moved to England when he was 11 and he was raised in London.

Educated at Bec Grammar School in Balham, Malik started a business studies course, but was soon lured into acting and won a scholarship to the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.

His first break came after landing roles in two episodes of hit TV series The Professionals in 1978. However, Malik reached a much wider audience in 1982 after he was cast as Hari Kumar in the mini series, The Jewel In the Crown (for which he was BAFTA-nominated) and then David Lean chose him to play Mahmoud Ali in A Passage To India.

Malik has since gone on to star in the James Bond film, The Living Daylights and also Roland Joffe's City of Joy. While film director James Cameron was so impressed by Malik's performances that he cast him in the film True Lies without even meeting the actor!

Late last year Malik starred alongside ex-Eastenders actress Martine McCutcheon in ITV drama The English Harem, but he is probably best known for his role in Holby City, where he played Zubin Khan from 2003 to 2005.

Malik is currently touring the UK in the play Heroes by Gérald Sibleyras, adapted by Tom Stoppard.

Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber, B. 1948

Composer Andrew Lloyd Webber was born in London on 22 March 1948 to a musical family. He started playing the violin and piano by the time he was five and had written nine musicals before he had left school! He then went to study for a degree in history at Oxford University, but his plans changed when he met Tim Rice. Together they began to compose music, producing some of today's best-loved musicals, including Cats, Joseph And The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, The Phantom Of The Opera and Evita.

In 1992, he was knighted for his hard work and services to music and in 1997 was created an honorary life peer.

Lloyd Webber has won a whole sackful of gongs including seven Tony Awards, six Oliviers, three Grammys (including Best Contemporary Classical Composition for Requiem), an Oscar, a Golden Globe, an International Emmy, and the London Critic's Circle Award in 2000 for Best New Musical for The Beautiful Game.

More recently, he has worked on soundtracks to films such as Match Point, Along Came Polly and Notting Hill.

In summer 2002, Lloyd Webber presented the R. Rahman musical Bombay Dreams and in 2004 produced a film version of The Phantom Of The Opera.

Later this year he will present his new production of The Sound of Music.

Lynne Ramsey, B.1969

Director Lynne Ramsey was born in Glasgow on 5 December 1969. She graduated from the UK's National Film and Television School in 1995.

Just a year after graduating, Ramsey directed two acclaimed short films. The first was Small Deaths - a dark, intimate look at three events in a young girl's life. The powerful film won the Prix du Jury award at Cannes in 1996. Her second film was Kill the Day - the story of a drug addict's life after he is released from prison, which won the French Grand Prix award in 1997.

Ramsey's first feature length film, and the one that gave her a name as a respected director, was Ratcatcher in 1999. It has won 11 awards, including a BAFTA in 2000 for Best British Newcomer, the Golden Wave award for Best Film from the Bordeaux International Festival for Women in Cinema and the Silver Hugo award at the Chicago International Film Festival for Best Director, both won in 1999.

Her latest film, Morvern Callar, is an adaptation of Alan Warner's cult book, starring Samantha Morton.

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