Woman’s Day (Australia)
10 YEARS OF CALL THE MIDWIFE!
Laura Main, aka Shelagh, talks about her excitement at being cast on the show a decade ago and why it’s still a hit
As the 10th season begins, star Laura Main, 40, who plays Sister Bernadette and later Shelagh Turner, chats with Woman’s Day about the show’s universal success.
It’s been a decade since Call The Midwife started. How does it feel being a part of such a phenomenon?
It’s absolutely amazing that we’ve reached the milestone of a decade now, and it feels as exciting as ever. I’m sure that’s massively to do with the reaction it still receives. It’s a total dream to be in a show that’s watched by millions. And to know that it’s loved all over the world, and very much so by Australians it seems, is a really lovely feeling!
Did you ever expect it to be such a hit?
I knew it was brilliant from the few scenes I got to read for the audition. And then when I’d been cast and I was on set, it dawned on me that this was a high quality drama – the attention to every detail was incredible. To be cast as a nun alongside great, experienced actresses Judy Parfitt, Jenny Agutter and Pam Ferris was so exciting, and I knew it was a really great job that I’d landed. But it was nice too that they gave a chance to unknowns.
What can viewers expect from the new season?
The future of Nonnatus House is threatened and is off of huge concern to Sister
Julienne,Julienne and Shelagh gets involved in trying to come up with solutions to save it, and we find them in slightly different situations than we’re used to.
How do you feel about how your character has developed over the years?
Even after 10 years of playing her, my character still surprises me. I had no idea when I was cast as a nun what could possibly be on the horizon for her. I’ve continued to feel so grateful for all the changes she’s gone through over the years, and just as in real life, getting to play the happy moments as well as the more challenging times.
You work with some big names on the show – who have you grown close to?
I have lots of close friends and relationships on CTM... but Jenny Agutter wins the title of both closest and biggest name! We lived near each other for many years and we got to know each other really well in the car journeys to work.
What’s next for you?
Another series of Call The Midwife. Don’t quit a hit! This is what I’ve dreamed of – to be acting in a brilliant show, and the fact that it’s still going is a bonus. It won’t always be around, so there’s plenty of time to be in other productions or unemployed!
CALL THE MIDWIFE Monday, 7.30pm, Foxtel BBC First
‘Even after 10 years, my character still surprises me’