Born in Birmingham, Helen George, 38, was studying musical theatre at the Royal Academy of Music when Elton John chose her as a backing singer in 2005. Soon after, she made her debut in the West End of London in The Woman in White. In 2012, she was cast as Trixie in the BBC drama Call the Midwife, now in its 12th series. In 2020, George sang The White Cliffs of Dover at Buckingham Palace for the BBC’s celebration of the 75th anniversary of VE Day. She stars in a touring production of The King and I from 4 February. She lives in London with fellow Call the Midwife actor Jack Ashton and their two daughters.
When were you happiest?
As a child playing in my parents’ garden in Birmingham, which they still have, and where my daughters play, swinging on my swing that my dad made for me.
What is your greatest fear?
Having no purpose.
Aside from a property, what’s the most expensive thing you’ve bought?
A grandfather clock for my partner’s birthday.
What is your most treasured possession?
A little chess set in a red case that was my father’s when he was a kid. He used to play chess on the bus to school and it’s still got his geography homework folded into it.
What is your most unappealing habit?
Who is your celebrity crush?
The Klitschko brothers.
What do you most dislike about your appearance?
My nose. I think it’s growing by the minute – not because I’m a liar. I used to have a button nose, goddammit.
Who would play you in the film of your life?
Depending on which chapter, Carey Mulligan or Lindsay Lohan.
What was the last lie that you told?
To my dog yesterday; he’s a rescue and has abandonment issues, and every time I leave the house I tell him I won’t be long to make him feel safe.
What is your guiltiest pleasure?
Eating Domino’s pizza while watching The Kardashians – it’s disgusting on all fronts.
What was the best kiss of your life?
Last week, when my daughter Lark, who is one and has just learned to kiss, gave me a kiss on my lips to wake me up.
Which living person do you most despise, and why?
Matt Hancock – our family was affected by the care home issues with Covid.
What is the worst job you’ve done?
Waitressing. I was so bad. I smashed things. I once mistakenly ordered a very expensive bottle of wine for a table. They thought they were ordering a very average bottle of wine, and I ordered them an £800 bottle and they drank it. I got the sack a few weeks later.
If you could edit your past, what would you change?
Going through a divorce.
If not yourself, who would you most like to be?
I’d like to be a gardener somewhere lovely, a stately home or Kew Gardens.
What is the closest you’ve come to death?
When I was young, I was pretty reckless – my 20s were quite hedonistic. I don’t know whether I’ve been close to death, but I may have been without realising.
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
To still be working.
Would you rather have more sex, money or fame?
What is the most important lesson life has taught you?
To let things go.
What happens when we die?
We let go.