‘Juliet Stevenson lights up the role of Winnie’ (★★★★ The Observer) in Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days. She took a little time out from being buried in her mound to answer our 11 Questions…
Can you describe your character Winnnie in Happy Days in three words? Indomitable, lonely, resourceful. But equally – desperate, funny, optimistic… I am cheating because 3 words don’t do her justice.
What are you usually doing 10 minutes before the show begins? On this show I am pre-set, sleeping in my mound, so ten minutes before the performance begins I am usually clambering up into the set, before taking my ten minute pre-show kip. Not really asleep of course – doing leg and foot stretch exercises underneath the set to keep the circulation going while I wait for the start….
What is your favourite play (seen, read or worked on)? Impossible question! Too many contenders… A Dolls House, Yerma, Measure for Measure would be among my favourites worked on… Oh, and Happy Days is right up there now….
What is your favourite midnight snack? Nutella.
What is your favourite word? Another impossible one! Cantankerous, melancholy, effervescent… among many others. Come to think about it, this might double as the answer to question number 1.
What are you most passionate about? Probably the welfare of children – my own and the world’s.
If days were 28 hours long, what would you do with the 4 extra hours? Read. I never have the time I would love to have for reading for my own pleasure.
If you could be in a room full of any one thing, what would it be?Books.
Favourite holiday you’ve ever been on? With my partner Hugh and the children, exploring North Eastern Australia, travelling up the coast and into the rainforest, fishing on the Daintree River, snorkeling on the Great Barrier Reef – every moment of it was magical.
Favourite city and why? A toss up between London, Paris and Vancouver. Prague and New York also big contenders.
If you could have any one supernatural power which would you choose and why? I would say the power to restore life, but unless I kept it mightily secret I imagine I would be overwhelmed by demands to use it. So let’s settle for flight.