Welsh actress Joanna Page, 46, is best known as Stacey in the hit BBC comedy Gavin & Stacey. She lives with her husband, Emmerdale actor James Thornton, and her four young children in Oxfordshire.
Don’t worry about being perfect
I always wanted to do incredibly well: I am an only child and an Aries, the zodiac sign of perfectionists. At school I was known for my good results, which put even more pressure on me. But over the years I have realized that being a perfectionist holds me back.
When I started going to auditions, I always thought I had to be 100 percent perfect and know all my lines. I felt like if I wasn’t the best I could be, I shouldn’t even bother. So I entered a vicious cycle where I worried that I wouldn’t do my best, then I would procrastinate and eventually miss the audition because I hadn’t given myself enough time to prepare. Now, I show up to read part of it and enjoy the way I do it at the time.
For the Gavin & Stacey special in 2019, I didn’t panic too much about any of it. If it’s not a perfect performance, then that’s how it was meant to be captured.
Welsh actress Joanna Page, 46, is best known as Stacey in the hit BBC comedy Gavin & Stacey.
Joanna, who lives with her husband, Emmerdale actor James Thornton, and their four young children in Oxfordshire, also appears as a regular panellist on ITV’s Loose Women.
I was very, very nervous when I auditioned for the movie Love, Actually. I first auditioned for Sarah, the role that Laura Linney eventually played, but they felt it wasn’t right. When I later read the role of Judy, although she was nervous and unprepared, she was more relaxed because they already knew me.
When I was in the play Fat Pig with Robert Webb in 2008, one night we both forgot our lines. We couldn’t get the scene back on track and I almost ran off the set to look at my script. But then I said to myself, “It’s not the end of the world.”
Moments like that have made me think that it’s okay if you’re not perfect. People really like it when you’re not; It makes you more identifiable.
The biggest change has been since I had children. It has put everything into perspective. I don’t have much time to prepare for auditions anymore, but it’s a lot more fun now. I think to myself, ‘I know what I’m doing, I know what the scene is about,’ and I move on.
- Joanna stars in Men Up, which is available to watch on BBC iPlayer. She also appears as a regular panelist on ITV’s Loose Women.