BAZ BAMIGBOYE: My baby just LOVES musicals, says pregnant Sheridan Smith 


Sheridan Smith, who is expecting the arrival of her first baby in five weeks, told me that the ‘little fella’ loves a song and dance

Sheridan Smith, who is expecting the arrival of her first baby in five weeks, told me that the ‘little fella’ loves a song and dance.

The BAFTA and Olivier award-winning entertainer said when she and partner Jamie Horn attended musical shows, pre-lockdown, the baby would ‘kick like mad’.

‘He’s definitely musical,’ she told me. ‘He enjoys a song!’ She said she liked to picture the baby doing ‘a little kick and a jazz hand here and there’.

Smith joked that ‘it feels like I’ve been pregnant for about five years. He’s due in May, so still got five weeks to go…’

With visits to the antenatal clinic out, the 38-year-old has instead been receiving care and advice over the phone and via online consultations.

‘We’re just waiting to see what happens with the lockdown. Better to stay safe, though. I’ve got to keep this little man well,’ Sheridan said, adding that when she had her last scan, the nurse told her the baby was ‘on the big side’. Partner Jamie is 6ft 3in, ‘so maybe that’s it’.

‘I’ve got to cut down on my sugar and have a low-key diet until he’s born,’ she said. ‘As long as he’s healthy, I’m happy.’ Giggling down the telephone line, she said she and the unborn baby aren’t the only musical lovers in the household.

‘I’ve converted my fella, who’d never seen a musical show before he met me. He listens to Elaine Paige on Sunday now. And sometimes he knows more of the lyrics than me!’

Sheridan said she felt her ambitions had changed now that she’s going to be a mum.

Smith joked that ‘it feels like I’ve been pregnant for about five years. He’s due in May, so still got five weeks to go...’ With visits to the antenatal clinic out, the 38-year-old has instead been receiving care and advice over the phone and via online consultations

Smith joked that ‘it feels like I’ve been pregnant for about five years. He’s due in May, so still got five weeks to go…’ With visits to the antenatal clinic out, the 38-year-old has instead been receiving care and advice over the phone and via online consultations

Still on her schedule, though, is a tour of Bill Kenwright’s production of Cilla The Musical, charting Cilla Black’s rise to fame. She is well acquainted with the legendary star, having portrayed her in the Cilla TV drama six years ago (above)

Still on her schedule, though, is a tour of Bill Kenwright’s production of Cilla The Musical, charting Cilla Black’s rise to fame. She is well acquainted with the legendary star, having portrayed her in the Cilla TV drama six years ago (above)

‘It’s funny because things that I could never have imagined doing before, I’m doing,’ she said. ‘I was always about getting that role … I still want to do it all, but there are other things I’d like to give a try.’

One such project is hosting a forthcoming BBC reality TV show about dog grooming called Pooch Perfect — a perfect fit for the dog-loving actress.

Pre-pregnancy she might have turned that down. ‘But when you’re a mum, you think: “What’s going to be great when you’ve got a baby?” Your priorities change slightly and I’m more open to other things now, I guess.’

She said she liked to picture the baby doing ‘a little kick and a jazz hand here and there’. Smith joked that ‘it feels like I’ve been pregnant for about five years. He’s due in May, so still got five weeks to go...’

She said she liked to picture the baby doing ‘a little kick and a jazz hand here and there’. Smith joked that ‘it feels like I’ve been pregnant for about five years. He’s due in May, so still got five weeks to go…’

Still on her schedule, though, is a tour of Bill Kenwright’s production of Cilla The Musical, charting Cilla Black’s rise to fame.

She is well acquainted with the legendary star, having portrayed her in the Cilla TV drama six years ago. She and Jeff Pope, who wrote the TV show and the stage production, have been conversing about it during her pregnancy.

The plan is for the show to have a four-week run at the Liverpool Empire in the autumn, followed by a short tour. 

‘We’ll see what happens after that, but I’m excited to be back on stage, and lose some baby weight while I’m at it.’

I told her that she looked positively radiant at the first night of Pretty Woman last month, and that having a baby clearly becomes her. ‘Well, maybe this is the new me,’ she said, happily.

‘I know I’ve had problems in the past but I’ve pulled myself together. I feel the best I’ve ever felt.’

Judi reveals her naughty side

Judi Dench has a reputation, to put it mildly, for being a bit naughty.

‘But not as naughty as Sir John!’ she told her friend Gyles Brandreth, during a conversation in the round at the Orange Tree Theatre in my old manor, Richmond, Surrey.

Judi Dench has a reputation, to put it mildly, for being a bit naughty. ‘But not as naughty as Sir John!’ she told her friend Gyles Brandreth, during a conversation in the round at the Orange Tree Theatre in my old manor, Richmond, Surrey

Judi Dench has a reputation, to put it mildly, for being a bit naughty. ‘But not as naughty as Sir John!’ she told her friend Gyles Brandreth, during a conversation in the round at the Orange Tree Theatre in my old manor, Richmond, Surrey

The great dame was referring to John Gielgud, back when they were in a Royal Shakespeare Company production of The Cherry Orchard at the Aldwych, directed by Michel Saint-Denis in 1961. 

She told Brandreth that Gielgud taught her the art of naughtiness. She recalled how one night, he produced an ‘enormous cucumber’, which he handed to fellow cast member Patience Collier with the words: ‘Deal with this.’ 

Judi did not reveal her co-star’s reaction. Collier was a distinguished character actress of stage and screen. I remember her, fondly, as Betsey Trotwood in the BBC’s 1974 version of David Copperfield. 

I’ve observed many instances, over the years, of Judi’s mischievous sense of humour. 

Once, she spotted me shopping in the men’s department in Bloomingdale’s (as you do when in New York). I hadn’t seen her, and as I picked up a box of briefs, a voice behind me boomed out: ‘They’re too big for you, Baz!’ 

I’d have gone red, if I was able.

Judi has been a tonic during the lockdown, appearing in a series of witty vignettes on Twitter.

You can watch the full 89-minute audience with Brandreth, which was recorded three years ago, by visiting the Orange Tree’s website from 3pm BST on April 26. 

Pay £4.99 and you can view it as many times as you like. It’s full of stories about her career, and she discusses the great and the good she has worked with. 

Like Judi, it’s a treasure. Monies raised will go towards helping the Orange Tree during the crisis.

Watch out for…

Lovie Simone, who is a knockout in director Tayarisha Poe’s film Selah And The Spades, which is available on Amazon Prime from today (Friday). The 21-year-old, who was born in New York, plays Selah, head of one of five factions at an elite U.S. school.

Simone’s performance powers the movie, though she told me ‘my own life at school was very chill’

Simone’s performance powers the movie, though she told me ‘my own life at school was very chill’

Her job is to sell ‘booze, pills, powders and fun’ to the other students, and she’s a tough cookie whose idea of a good time is putting the fear of God into her followers. 

Simone’s performance powers the movie, though she told me ‘my own life at school was very chill’. She went to high school in upstate New York where it was ‘very friendly and I joked a lot’. 

In fact, one of the reasons she was so attracted to the part was because it was the opposite of who she is.

She laughed when I asked if she was channeling the coldness of Al Pacino’s Michael Corleone during her performance as Selah. 

In any case, her favourite actors are Denzel Washington, Angela Bassett and Angelina Jolie. 

The honey-voiced actress is now much in demand, having completed playing a witch in a remake of the 1996 movie The Craft about a youthful coven. 

‘I’m a good one,’ she assured me over the phone.

Lovie Simone, who is a knockout in director Tayarisha Poe’s film Selah And The Spades, which is available on Amazon Prime from today (Friday). The 21-year-old, who was born in New York, plays Selah, head of one of five factions at an elite U.S. school

Lovie Simone, who is a knockout in director Tayarisha Poe’s film Selah And The Spades, which is available on Amazon Prime from today (Friday). The 21-year-old, who was born in New York, plays Selah, head of one of five factions at an elite U.S. school

The theatre will record a series of Ridley’s monologues — one of which Mirren will perform — and release them on Saturday nights at 7pm

The theatre will record a series of Ridley’s monologues — one of which Mirren will perform — and release them on Saturday nights at 7pm

Mirren Mack, so good as Kaya, the runaway in BBC drama The Nest was meant to appear on stage in Philip Ridley’s new play The Beast Of Blue Yonder at Southwark Playhouse. 

Instead, the theatre will record a series of Ridley’s monologues — one of which Mirren will perform — and release them on Saturday nights at 7pm (southwarkplayhouse.co.uk).

HBO made overtures to the young actress about a major series, but she had to decline due to a diary clash. 

You be can sure more offers will follow.

 

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