By actor Stephanie Cole’s reckoning, “once upon a time” is one of the most exciting phrases in the English language.
“Once upon a time”, she says, rolling the phrase in her warm voice, ” ‘once upon a time…what? Wow. What is it going to be about?”
The veteran actor is on the phone from her home near Bath in the West of England, mostly to talk about the latest season of her show Still Open All Hours, but so vibrant and engaging as she is the conversation wanders far and wide.
‘Once upon a time’ enters the mix as she answers a question about why she got into acting. The thing is, she doesn’t really know.
“I don’t remember a time when I didn’t want to be an actor. When I was four years old I think I’d been to a pantomime but I’d also seen a Walt Disney cartoon and what I wanted to be in then was in a Walt Disney cartoon…I have no idea why. I just know that I was totally in love…”
At 16, after being expelled from school and spending a year training as a shorthand typist, she attended the Bristol Old Vic theatre school.
“It was”, she says, “the best thing that could…