Hedda Gabler star Sheridan Smith: 'I do miss my family so much'
Award-winning actress Sheridan Smith says she is keeping her feet on the ground as she prepares for her latest leading role in the West End.
The Epworth stage star is set to play the lead in Ibsen's Hedda Gabler, starting this September at the Old Vic in London.
The Olivier Award winner is also soon to appear in ITV's Mrs Biggs as the wife of Great Train Robber Ronnie Biggs.
But despite developing a reputation in the last two years as one of the UK's finest stage stars, the 31-year-old says she has not forgotten her roots in North Lincolnshire.
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She said: "I try to be a chameleon and this new project is really exciting for me.
"I was in Australia filming a series for ITV when I got the phone call about playing the part of Hedda Gabler.
"It is good to step outside your comfort zone. You have got to try to surprise other people as well as yourself.
"I love being an actress and it is really important to keep trying different characters."
Smith's career was kick-started by her role in popular sitcom Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps, but she has gone on to become a highly regarded star of the stage.
In 2011 she won the Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Musical, for her part as Elle Woods in Legally Blonde the Musical, and in 2012 received the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Performance in a Supporting Role, for the part of Doris in Flare Path.
But despite the success, she still makes time to visit her family in Epworth whenever she can.
"As much as I love my job, I do miss my family so much," she said. "To have time at home and be with loved ones is when I'm at my happiest.
"I surprised my Dad for Father's Day and it was so nice to be home.
"I couldn't ask for a more supportive family. It helps to keep my feet on the ground."
Next year, Sheridan Smith will also appear at the Noel Coward Theatre in London in A Midsummer Night's Dream as the leading lady alongside comedian David Walliams.
Rehearsals for Hedda Gabler will start in August, with the show at the Old Vic in London's West End from September.