Daisy Boulton is currently starring in Noel Coward’s Present Laughter, touring to Richmond, Brighton and Malvern until 21 August 2016. Here’s my exclusive interview with the talented young lady herself.
Thank you for chatting to Break A Leg, Daisy. Tell me about your character in Present Laughter. Are you enjoying the tour so far?
I am playing Daphne Stillington, a 24-year-old debutante, who has fallen hook, line and sinker for Garry Essendine (played by Samuel West), a hugely successful and famous theatre actor. I am really enjoying the tour – yes! Such a talented and lovely group of actors and company of creative.
What did you think of the script when you first read it? How familiar are you with Coward’s work?
I loved Daphne and thought it would be such fun to play….if I manage to pull it off. I saw Coward’s Hay Fever in the West End a few years ago and thought Phoebe Waller-Bridge and Freddie Fox were fabulous. It’s a joy to have the opportunity to play such complex and brilliant writing and revel in it’s the hilarity.
Have you a favourite line or scene?
When Liz says ‘I feel a sinking’ in explanation for asking for a cup of coffee. I have found myself finding many a tongue-in-cheek, apt moment to use the line.
What made you decide to become an actress?
Doing The Dreaming as a kid with the NYMT and years later watching Harriet Walter play Cleopatra opposite Patrick Stewart at the Novello Theatre.
Who inspires you as a performer?
Well…..Harriet Walter, Cush Jumbo playing Anthony in Julius Caesar at the Donmar and then taking on a regular lead in The Good Wife, which is the show of my dreams to be in. Julianna Margulies for that matter! Katie Sagal in Sons Of Anarchy. There are many pretty amazing performers, female and male who I am inspired by.
What do you think the most valued lesson is that you’ve learned in your career, so far?
Never stop thanking my family and friends for their relentless love and support!
Any advice for aspiring actors?
If you get a knock, get up, dust yourself off and go again. It’s never straightforward.
Finally, what can the audience expect from Present Laughter and what would you say to encourage people to come and see it?
Sam West is a fabulous Garry. It’s lots of fun. It’s brilliant, brilliant writing. It’s an insight into the world and life of Noel Coward as it is the closest to an auto-biographical play. The hidden depths and subtleties have been important to us as a company creating it, Stephen Unwin, our director said how like Chekhov Coward is and I agree. It’s moving and sad in many ways as a play but through great humanity and therefore laughter. Humans are quite funny really after all.
Huge thanks to Daisy for her time and I’ll be seeing the play to review when it arrives in Malvern, can’t wait!
Photo credits: Theatre Royal, Bath