I did try when I wasn't doing the singing to do as much comedy as I could because I thought with Comic Relief you are duty bound to anyway.
I had always fancied a go at the comedy and when it started to go reasonably well and the opportunity arose for me to move into it full time, I just couldn't turn it down. I just took the risk, and I just wanted to see if it would work and thankfully it did.
Suffice to say, many women find their first appearance on a comedy panel show to be their last. Second chances seem to be given less often to the female of the species.
I pay a bit more than lip-service to health: I don't eat chips or pre-prepared food, and it might be a comedy sacrilege to admit I do like vegetables, fruit and salad and stuff.
I think actors go along a continuum from Simon Callow down to kind of Ross Kemp, and I like to think of myself as the Ross Kemp of comedy. He's very good in 'East Enders' because he plays a version of himself. I think I can play a version of myself - that's about all I can do.
I think my comedy, the put-downs I do to hecklers, are the accumulated bitterness of years of people feeling that it's perfectly acceptable to make a comment on your appearance when they don't even know you.
Everyone in comedy thinks if you go to the U.S. you become a global star but, unfortunately, I've always been a bit anti-American - so I never did.
If I am totally honest, I would have to say that ''Allo 'Allo!' was not my cup of tea, even though lots of people loved it. For that reason, I find comedy fascinating. There is a huge difference between what people find funny.
I don't hold any candle for drama versus comedy.
The problem with comedy audiences - it's like the Coliseum - when they see someone struggling, they don't feel altruistic towards them. They feel slightly repulsed by it.
Madness isn't altogether a bad thing in comedy.
There's a general sense that women are more relaxed and less defensive in comedy than they used to be. I think it's easier than it was but underlying it all there is still a pretty sexist view of women on stage, which to me hasn't changed that much.
You look across the board at comedy quiz shows, and they are mainly hosted by men.
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