Dec. 13th, 1987
Derby, Derbyshire, England, UK
Michael Socha's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Michael Socha (born December 13, 1987) is an English actor, best known for his roles in the critically acclaimed films This Is England and Summer, and the television series This Is England '86, This Is England '88 and Being Human.
Born in Derby, Derbyshire, to Robert and Kathleen Socha (nicknamed "Kath") on 13 December 1987. He is the older brother of actress 'Lauren Socha', star of the Channel 4 comedy-drama Misfits.
Socha was brought up in Littleover, a suburb of Derby and attended St Benedict Catholic School. Socha was a rebellious pupil. He often skipped school, but when forced to attend he tried to make it fun by doing the things he was most interested in. At the age of 11 Socha unsuccessfully auditioned for the lead role in a school musical play. When Socha was 12, his mother read in a local newspaper about a play being cast by the Chellaston Youth Players. She asked her son and daughter if they wanted to try out for it, and both did. Socha's motivation for auditioning was his anger at being denied a role in the musical and his desire to prove his teachers wrong about his acting skills. He won the lead role of Bugsy Malone in the play. He acted in several plays for the group, but by his own admission did not take acting very seriously.
Through teachers at Socha's school the family learned about film director Ian Smith's Central Television Junior Workshop, a free actors' workshop for young people from the Nottingham area. He enrolled in the course when he was 14, but was almost refused admission as he had failed to learn the monologue for his audition and was put in the "reserve group".
His second audition went the same way, but the programme relented and allowed him in after a time. Socha says the workshop had a strong impact on him, and he began working hard at acting. His first professional role came when he was cast in a small part in a short film. He was quickly cast in several small parts subsequently, and hired an agent.
Socha's father had a long history of alcohol abuse, and his parents separated. In 2004, Robert Socha died of an alcohol-related heart attack. According to Kath Socha (a residential social worker), the death of Socha's father made her son very independent. "Michael was walking the streets of London at 16 going to auditions. He had to because I was working. He'd go off with a map and Tube fare".
He liked drama, English and history courses, however, and received his GCSEs in those three subjects. He credits his teacher, Mrs Urquhart-Hughes, as someone who watched over him, motivated him, and got him to do his homework after school.
His first job after leaving school was in a manufacturing factory. He disliked it and quit, and enrolled at Burton College, a further education school. He worked at two other factories after leaving school, as well as at a car wash. He also worked as a labourer for his uncle's bricklaying firm, mixing mortar for the bricklayers. But as he was constantly taking off work at the last moment to attend auditions he quit working full-time and dedicated himself to acting.
Socha says he likes to spend his spare time going out or relaxing at home doing nothing. He has a fondness for French cinema (although he speaks no French) and for reality television shows like Big Brother. His favourite football team is Derby County.
He has a son called Elis Michael Socha, with his long-time girlfriend Faye.
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