13 names to know in 2023

Meet the actors, musicians, and designers looking to leave their mark this year.

Mathilda Mace

Mathilda wears jacket and shoes stylist’s own and dress DSQUARED2

SFX make-up artist wants to give everyone hooves

Mathilda Mace wishes she could change the human race. I wish we had more mutated features,” says the 3D designer and SFX make-up artist. I wish some of us had huge ears or a bit of tail left over.” Mace, 21, has only been in the game since 2020, when she dropped out of university and decided to do what she wanted: subvert beauty standards through centaur costumes, strangely erotic, muscular bodysuits and slap straight out of horror- fantasy, inspired by films like Pan’s Labyrinth. She’s already designed a dress made of algae for Drag Race UK queen Black Peppa and found a fan in FKA twigs. Now, she’s got her sights set on Hollywood – where all the beautiful weirdos live. I’m trying to be free and let my work take me to the next place. Maybe London, LA, who knows!” TS



Piglet wears jacket, shirt, trousers and shoes talent’s own

South London-via-Belfast musician pens political tracks

Despite the dark forces conspiring against us all, South London’s DIY music scene is still going strong. As well as making warm, intimate, bedroom indie as Piglet, Charlie Loane keeps busy with bands such as Leather.head, Speed Training and Press.Release. Loane is a regular at the Solidarity Tapes gigs, where funds are raised for organisations Stop Deportation, Palestine Action and the trans-led community group We Exist. I can’t think of anyone I spend much time with who’s not an anti-capitalist,” Loane says. Although the scene’s former hub – Deptford venue Sister Midnight – closed its doors due to Covid, plans for a community-run pub in Lewisham are looking good, and Loane is confident that there’s a healthy appetite for activism out there. A lot of people feel they want to be involved with improving this deeply fucked-up country.” DR


Jamie Flatters

Jamie wears jacket C.P. COMPANY and shirt, jeans and shoes talent’s own

South London actor lad set to turn blue (da ba dee)

Jamie Flatters is one month away from his life changing beyond comprehension: from unknown South Londoner to star of a trilogy built on history’s highest grossing film. In Avatar: The Way of Water, the 22-year old plays Neteyam, eldest son of the first film’s human-turned-Na’vi hero Jake (Sam Worthington) and Neytiri (Zoe Saldana). In James Cameron’s sequel to his 2009 sci-fi eco-thriller love story, the focus shifts to the next gen Na’vi natives as they battle yet more rapacious human colonisation. Flatters auditioned at 16 and was on set at 17, with the motion-capture filming taking place in a grey box studio thing” in Los Angeles for the best part of three years. So, over a quarter of his life has been involved with making Avatar 2, 3 and 4. Whether I wanted it to or not, Avatar has shaped me.” CM


Sarah Garfield

Sarah wears jacket, top, skirt, belt, tights talents own. Shoes KIKO KOSTADINOV

Tumblr girl does spooky sewing for the ravers

When fashion designer Sarah Garfield went to a GutterRing rave, the crowd fell in line with her namesake brand: spooky undertones and lots of goths. They gave off the right energy,” says the 27-year-old. I’m not a clean, minimal designer, but I’m obsessed with small touches.” Since graduating from Central Saint Martins in 2021, the North Londoner has been establishing her label that blends punk with modern goth and emo. My work is a study of my self. Around 11, I was emo, going to Camden, then indie sleaze, then back to goth.” These identities bleed into Garfield’s work, from ruched band tees to corseted lace leggings and the perfect cropped Victorian-style jacket. (“They look good on anyone.”) She’s got big plans for a wholly self-funded LFW show next February, with a few surprises in the run-up. Keep your eyes peeled… JW


Edem Wornoo

Edem wears jumper STONE ISLAND, trousers GUESS and shoes and necklace talent’s own

Music vid director gets writing leg-up to BBC drama

As a kid in South London, Edem Wornoo knew he wanted to be a storyteller. Reading, though, wasn’t his bag. I thought I’d tell stories in a visual format,” he says. First stop: buying Syd Field’s 1979 how-to book Screenplay. Next: directing music videos for student mates at the University of Surrey then, after graduating, clips for Dave and Stormzy (Clash) and Wretch 32 (little BIG Man). Those caught the attention of Candice Carty-Williams, Queenie author and creator of Champion, an upcoming BBC drama. After being offered a role as a writers’ room assistant, Wornoo’s script notes saw him hired as screenwriter of an entire episode in the 2023 series. The 24-year-old wrote scenes at a concert and a talk show. Damn, people actually listened to what I wrote down! Why would somebody do that?” Because Wornoo is a shooting-star talent going places, fast. Champion, already. CM


Lucia Keskin


YouTube spoofer stuns mum by getting a job on the telly

When Lucia Keskin (AKA Chi with a C) went viral five years ago, the response was so intense her mum couldn’t leave their house in Margate. The video in question, Opening my GCSE Results on camera”, told everyone she’d failed most of her subjects before her parents knew. She wasn’t happy,” says Keskin, with signature deadpan delivery. Even when Keskin began uploading impressions of Gemma Collins, mum still didn’t get it. She thought: What’s the point? Get a job.’” But that online funny business has paid off. The 21-year-old’s face is now on bigger screens, like Channel 4’s Big Boys and Dave’s Sneakerhead. She’s even developing her own show but can’t say much – showbiz secrets and that. “[TV] was always my goal. I didn’t know if I’d get that, but I’d dreamed of it.” OP


Precious Mustapha

Precious wears jacket and dress VIVIENNE WESTWOOD and shoes OTTOLINGER

Growing up in Hackney, Precious Mustapha went through different career options: The Devil Wears Prada inspired her to get into fashion; then, a random hunch about being the next Serena. Thing is, she couldn’t sew or play tennis. GCSE drama, though? That’s where I could escape.” Now, after starring in Fate: The Winx Saga, a Netflix reboot of Nickelodeon fave Winx Club, the 25-year-old is getting used to being recognised. She’s always shocked that people watch the show” – 57 million in the first month. A lot of people who come up to me are Black women. With filming of series two done, Mustafa would love to do a period drama next. She’s already figured out the MCU, too. Oi, Kevin Feige! Give Precious a call, yeah? She’s got interesting ideas for a Mysty Knight film… OP


Sonia Trefilova

Sonia wears corset, top (worn underneath), jeans, jewellery and shoes talent’s own

Can this designer make a good torso garment? Corset she can

Crafty couture” is how Sonia Trefilova describes her fashion design, which is anchored by corsets, the 26-year-old’s trademark. Delicate and hyperfeminine, they’re made with repurposed materials like vintage pillowcases or tablecloths. While studying womenswear at Westminster University, the Moscow-born Trefilova worked on embroidery design at Gucci. In Russia you don’t pursue art or drama; it’s very mathematical and science-based,” she says. After moving to London aged 10, Trefilova used her photo-realistic drawing skills to get onto a course at City & Guilds of London Art School, before shifting her focus to fashion. I’m inspired by the 1920s and Marilyn Monroe, especially her bullet bra.” Currently, she’s experimenting with origami pleats and incorporating clay detailing into her work. Maybe one day I’ll play around with less feminine forms and make something more wearable. But right now, it’s all about corsetry.” JW


Savannah Stacey Keenan

Savannah wears jacket DIESEL, hoodie and trousers PALACE SKATEBOARDS, shoes NIKE and hat talent’s own

Palace-approved boarder keeps on rollin’

It’s been a whirlwind for South London’s Savannah Stacey Keenan, who’s been busy skateboarding in Rome, Los Angeles and New York – all part of the job since getting sponsored by Palace. Keenan’s the first woman to land the coveted gig and although she’s been injured recently, your ability to get better over time” is what keeps the 24-year-old going. Keenan has come a long way since first jumping on a board aged 14, when she’d line up tables in her back garden to skate off. Pre-pandemic, Keenan juggled jobs in fashion and hospitality before knuckling down on skateboarding over lockdown. The gamble’s paid off. Her plan is to keep skating towards wherever life takes her: riding for Palace and long-time sponsor Nike, filming slick videos and landing tricks. I’m all about living in the present moment.” JW


Emmanuel Wallace

Manny wears jacket, vest, T-shirt and trousers STONE ISLAND and shoes talent’s own

TikTok scientist makes things go boom from his backyard

I like explosions, fire and bright colours,” says Emmanuel Wallace, aka Big Manny, TikTok’s favourite scientist. Wallace has racked up nearly 750,000 followers since December by posting educational videos. Based in Dagenham, he studied biomedical science at University of East London before taking a technician role at a secondary school. But it became too disruptive: I was on students’ For You’ pages. It was too much.” The 25-year-old now makes content full-time from his at-home lab – though reactive chemicals live in the shed. Some people collect model trains,” he says. For me, it’s elements.” Aside from mixing sodium with water (his favourite), Wallace gets a kick out of sharing his passion. I spoke to someone whose three-year-old got into science from watching my videos. Now it’s time to scale up up – more experiments, explosions and knowledge!” JW


Harry Lawtey


Great British banking (and bonking) star gets his game face on

For Industrys Harry Lawtey, acting is like football: It’s being part of something greater than yourself.” The 25-year old’s introduction to acting came from his dad, who showed him great British films such as Kes. Now, he’ll be on screen with great British actors Christian Bale and Toby Jones in The Pale Blue Eyes, a historical horror streaming on Netflix in January. He’s also just signed on to star alongside Lady Gaga and Joaquin Phoenix in 2024’s highly-anticipated Joker sequel. So, what’s he got planned for his inevitable award acceptance speeches? Just thanks to my mum and dad,” he says. Boy’s done good. TS


Le Fil

Le Fil wears coat BLUMARINE, bodysuit and skirt MUGLER, tights stylist’s own and shoes talent’s own

Long-haired drag icon breaks gender stereotypes

Le Fil has done it all: studied ceramics, made music, appeared with LGBTQ+ collective Sink The Pink and gone on tour with Mel C. Appearing on UK Drag Race must’ve been a doddle? This was the Olympics of drag,” he laughs. Judges and feedback… it’s like going back to uni.” Growing up in Brighouse, Huddersfield, Le Fil (real name Philip Li) spoke Cantonese, teaching himself English via Kylie Minogue and Cathy Dennis, the songwriter behind Britney’s Toxic. Li, 37, considers himself a pop sculptor”, constantly moulding aspects of music, fashion, art and performance. OP


Joshua Rogers

Joshua wears jacket ARMANI EXCHANGE and jeans LEVI’S®

Phwoar! Designer makes men’s leather hot n’ steamy

Designer Joshua Rogers is on a leather-clad mission to make men sexy. Studying for his BA Menswear at CSM while learning the ropes at McQueen, the 21-year-old’s fetishistic menswear gets our pulses throbbing. When I was 14 and skateboarding, the Supreme subculture was prevalent,” says the designer, who hails from Surrey. While that tribal element still runs trough his work, he won’t be found queuing for trainer drops. Now, he’s designing mutated nylon trousers and a burnt brown jacket made using a leather sofa he found on the street. I’m trying to push tailored menswear, but something more contemporary, something…” Hot? Exactly.” TS


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