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Mirren Mack reveals why Portrait Artist of the Year was more nerve-racking than being on stage

After weeks of lockdown, the Sky Arts favourite was a real change of pace.

Mirren Mack in Portrait Artist of the Year
Published: Wednesday, 21st October 2020 at 5:44 pm

Star of The Nest Mirren Mack has revealed that being a sitter for Sky Arts competition Portrait Artist of the Year made her more nervous than taking on a stage role.


The latest series was filmed in July with strict measures in place to minimise the risks posed by coronavirus, and Mack was able to sit without a mask due to the appropriate social distancing.

Nevertheless, in an interview with, she confessed to being nervous prior to filming, having spent the preceding weeks in lockdown with only her direct family.

"I think I was most nervous because after not seeing or being around people for so long, I was then going into something where I wasn't being a character at all, I was just being myself," she said.

"It was more nerve-racking than being on a stage being a character, because then you can hide behind that. Whereas people were asking me questions as myself and it was just a new experience. It was actually an amazing experience and I loved it, but I was just a bit nervous beforehand going into it.

"It was strange coming from a world of just seeing my family to a big room full of amazing creative people. It was a really beautiful break in my lockdown."

Portrait Artist of the Year is currently airing its seventh series on Sky Arts, with other sitters including Mack's Sex Education co-star Ncuti Gatwa, as well as Sir Trevor McDonald, actress Fay Ripley and drag queen The Vivienne.


Portrait Artist of the Year continues tonight at 8pm on Sky Arts. Check out what else is on with our TV Guide, or take a look at our new TV shows 2020 page to find out what's airing this autumn and beyond.


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