Catherine Russell (actress)

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Catherine Russell
Born (1965-04-17) 17 April 1965 (age 54)
Lambeth, London, England
TelevisionHolby City
Spouse(s)Richard Holmes
FamilyMary Smith (mother)
Nicholas Smith (father)

Catherine Russell (born 17 April 1965 in London) is a British stage, television and screen actress best known for her role as Serena Campbell in the BBC medical drama series Holby City.

Personal life[edit]

Catherine Russell is the daughter of actor Nicholas Smith and his wife Mary. She is married to film producer Richard Holmes and they have two children and live in Streatham. She trained at the Central School of Speech and Drama from 1983 to 1986 under George Hall.


Russell's credits are extensive and varied including being nominated for an Ian Charleson Award for her performance in Chekhov's Three Sisters. She has played leads in the West End at the National, the Royal Court, Soho Theatre, Chichester Festival Theatre, Lyric, Almeida Theatre, and the Royal Exchange, Manchester.

She regularly works with the director Max Stafford-Clark for his theatre company Out of Joint where, as well as Masha in Three Sisters, she created roles such as Tess in Timberlake Wertenbaker's The Break of Day, Rima and Phoebe in Robin Soans' Talking to Terrorists, Mrs Peacham and Bett Rock in Stephen Jeffreys' The Convict's Opera and Hildy in Stella Feehily's Dreams of Violence. Other new work includes Nurse Ratched in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest directed by Michael Buffong, leading roles in Nobel Prize winner Derek Walcott's The Last Carnival and award winning Kevin Elyot's The Day I Stood Still directed by the renowned Ian Rickson. She is also a singer and played Rosie in the West End production of Mamma Mia!

In 2017 Russell took a break from Holby City to appear as Mrs Prentice in Joe Orton's What The Butler Saw at the Curve theatre in Leicester. She also performed at the Theatre Royal, Bath.


Russell has starred in several television series including playing Hugh Bonneville's sister, Rachel Cazalet, in The Cazalets, Gemma Jones's daughter in Chelworth, the title role of Elly Chandler in Chandler & Co with Barbara Flynn and subsequently Susan Fleetwood; Nathaniel Parker's wife in The Inspector Lynley Mysteries and Martin Shaw's wife in Always and Everyone. Other television includes guest appearances in Messiah, Agatha Christie's Poirot, Waking the Dead, Sherlock Holmes, Maigret, Silent Witness, Holding On and Pete versus Life (series one and two) with Rafe Spall. She is currently in the BBC medical drama Holby City, playing Consultant Surgeon, Serena Campbell, since 2012.


Russell starred opposite Ian Hart in the film Clockwork Mice directed by Vadim Jean. She also made a comic, cameo appearance playing a work colleague of Colin Firth's in Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason. Her other films include Solitaire for Two and Soft Top Hard Shoulder.

External links[edit]