FIRST IMPRESSIONS: ANITA HARRIS
Monday, 30 November -0001

FIRST IMPRESSIONS: ANITA HARRIS

…is an English actress, singer & entertainer. She has been in show business since the age of 15, when she was spotted by a talent scout while figure skating at an ice rink. She appeared in several Carry On films and had chart success in the 1960s.

What are you working on at the moment?
I’m taking my show out on the road with the Peter Gill Trio. It brings together a new audience with an audience that has known me for a while, and features music that is comparable with certain parts of my life.

When are you at your happiest?
At home cooking supper. Happiness for me has always been with my family; I was brought up in a very loving family environment. I also love rehearsing something new, hearing an orchestra play it and then performing it for the first time.

What is your greatest fear?
When you get to my age, the fear is losing loved ones. My greatest fear would be losing either of my brothers or my beloved husband. Fear comes with love. I think I try to put fear to one side.

What is your earliest memory?
My darling mother teaching hockey when I was three years old because the hockey teacher was ill and Mummy was pretty good at it. It’s funny, I haven’t thought about that for years and years.

What do you most dislike about yourself?
The fact that I’m a Gemini and sometimes can’t make up my mind. I wish I was a Libra and had more balance.

Who has been your greatest influence?
My family. I was devoted to my parents because they gave me so much. In my working life I would say my husband.

What is your most treasured possession?
Memories. And my wedding ring.

What trait do you most deplore in others?
Impatience. And people who are unkind.

What do you most dislike about your appearance?
My feet. They were brought up in ice-skating boots so have nobbles all over them.

What is your favourite book?
If I’m honest I don’t read a great deal but if someone sends me a script I am on it like a hawk.

What is your favourite film?
Calamity Jane; and also Shall We Dance? with Jennifer Lopez and Richard Gere.

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And your favourite piece of music?

Danse de Phryné from Faust. I used to ice skate to it.

What is your favourite meal?
Sunday roast – lamb.

Who would you like to come to dinner?
Winston Churchill, Rachmaninoff , Frank Sinatra and Bette Midler.

What is the nastiest thing anyone has ever said to you?
A nasty experience was waiting for an audition when I was about 17. My name was called and as I was walking from the wings of the stage, I opened my mouth ready to sing. Someone asked my height, I said 5ft 7½ and they just said ‘thank you’. The walk back to the wings felt like hours. We all have to go through rejection in life.

Do you believe in aliens?
I believe in angels.

What is your secret vice?
Midnight feasts of biscuits and chocolate.

Do you write thank-you notes?
Not as much as I should.

Which phrase do you most overuse?
‘Darling’.

What would most improve the quality of your life?
Sustaining all the good things about what I’ve had and what I’ve been granted.

Tell us one thing people might not know about you.
I love doing hairdressing. It’s not something I took on professionally but in some of the shows I did in the past I used to do the other girls’ hair.

What would you like your epitaph to read?
‘Thank you for the love’.

Anita is on a UK tour with the Peter Gill Trio in An Evening With Anita Harris. She will be at the Royal Albert Hall for Follies In Concert on 28 April: www.anita-harris.com


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