This was the other sketch Jenny Seagrove signed for me a couple of weeks ago as she arrived at the Theatre Royal Haymarket where she is currently appearing in Alan Ayckbourn’s HOW THE OTHER HALF LOVES.
It’s from Agatha Christie’s mother-daughter drama A DAUGHTER’S A DAUGHTER, which had its West End debut at the Trafalgar Studios in December 2009. It was penned under the pseudonym Mary Westmacott, which Agatha Christie used for a series of six romantic novels between 1930 – 1956. It is very different to her other stage work and is considered a more personal play than anything else.
Jenny played Ann, a widow, whose only daughter Sarah (played by Honeysuckle Weeks – not a name you could forget) returns home after the Second World War. Resentment and jealously rages as gradually their relationship corrodes. I drew a quick biro sketch of Jenny and Honeysuckle, which they both signed for me in early 2010, at the end of the run. This is a more detailed study of Jenny in her role and a superimposed portrait with my trusty 4B pencil.
In first saw popular British actress Jenny Seagrove way back in 1993 when she starred opposite Tom Conti as a “glamorous praying mantis” in Noel Coward’s PRESENT LAUGHTER at the then Globe Theatre (renamed the Gielgud a year later) in London’s Shaftesbury Avenue. Nineteen years later she appeared in the first staging of the English playwright’s ‘lost’ play VOLCANO. After a short tour it settled in for a limited season at the Vaudeville during the summer of 2012.
Over the past thirty something years Jenny’s extensive stage and small screen career has seen her appear in numerous acclaimed productions. One of her most notable roles was QC Jo Mills in the long-running BBC drama JUDGE JOHN DEED.
In VOLCANO she plays the elegant widow Adela, the subject to one man’s philandering urges alongside a smouldering volcano-the ideal metaphor as ‘bubbling emotions are about to erupt.’
Jenny is currently featuring in Alan Ayckbourne’s vintage comedy about adultery HOW THE OTHER HALF LOVES at the Theatre Royal Haymarket. I meet her on a pleasant Spring Saturday as she rode her bike to work and chained it outside the stage door. Our brief chat included some reminiscing about her Noel Coward roles as she signed this VOLCANO sketch for me.