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Roehampton Drama graduate Matt Henry wins Olivier Award

Roehampton Drama graduate Matt Henry has won an Olivier Award for his lead role as Lola in the West End show Kinky Boots. The awards show will be broadcast on ITV this evening (4 April).

Posted: 4 April 2016

Matt, who learnt a range of performance skills while studying for a bachelor’s degree in Drama and Sociology at Roehampton, was also a member of the University’s popular Roehampton Players society, where he played the role of Pharoah in Joseph and His Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat. He described his theatre award win on Twitter saying ‘Dreams really do come true’. His award is for Best Actor in a Musical.

Matt Henry's reaction to winning an Olivier Award on twitter.

Professor Julie Hall, Deputy Provost at the University of Roehampton said: “We’re thrilled for Matt Henry, it’s a very well deserved win for a demanding role in great West End show. It’s also proof that with real dedication, a Drama degree from the University of Roehampton can take you to the very pinnacle of a performance career.

“Seeing our graduates go on to secure leading roles in the West End and to win hugely respected tributes like an Olivier Award is very gratifying for our staff who trained Matt and others like him.”

Study Drama, Theatre and Performance degrees at the University of Roehampton


Since graduating from Roehampton, Matt Henry has gone on to perform across the West End, in shows including:

  • Avenue Q (Noël Coward Theatre and UK tour); 
  • Lion King (Lyceum); 
  • Saturday Night Fever (Apollo Victoria); 
  • The Frontline (Shakespeare's Globe). 

In an interview with the University earlier in his career, Matt, who also appeared in The Voice explained what he loved most about Roehampton: “I really enjoyed being on campus in Roehampton, every Friday there was a ‘Bop’ that my friends and I would go too. The Summer Ball was also amazing. I loved doing all the typical student things, I really did love my time there.” He also added: I would recommend Roehampton to any aspiring drama student or actor today.”

Kinky Boots is a big-hearted and high-spirited musical which tells the true story of Charlie Price, the new owner of his late father’s Northampton shoe factory. Trying to live up to his father’s legacy and save the family business from bankruptcy, Charlie finds inspiration in the form of Lola (Matt Henry), an entertainer in need of some sturdy stilettos.

This year's Olivier Awards also marked a record for one of the UK's leading actresses, Dame Judi Dench, who received her eighth Olivier, for best supporting actress in the Kenneth Brannagh Theatre Company's performance of The Winter's Tale.

As well as his flourishing acting career, Matt has just released his debut album, featuring a diverse range of collaborations including Ben Earle from The Shires plus Connor Reeves and Drew McConnell from Babyshambles.

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