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Sarah Jayne Dunn on...When Harry Met Sally

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Former Hollyoaks star, Sarah Jayne Dunn has worked on stage and the silver screen since leaving the hit soap. From The Dark Knight to Boeing Boeing and she is currently starring in the touring version of the West End hit, When Harry Met Sally - based on the Rob Reiner film of the same name. Recently we interviewed Rupert Hill (Harry) and thought it was time we heard from Sarah Jayne to give us the female perspective, as this rom-com is a battle of the sexes, after all. The stage adaptation of of this witty hit arrives in Manchester in May.

How are you finding the tour so far?
It's great, we are all getting on really well and the show is loads of fun so we're having a ball! It's going really quickly!
You delivered a great American accent for Boeing Boeing recently on tour. How have you managed to get it so perfect?
I have had dialect lessons for the American accent as it's a very useful accent to be able to do as an actress and I had 6 months doing the accent with Boeing Boeing then 3 months with The Vagina Monologues so I've had a lot of practice with it now, I really enjoy it.
What's your favourite line in When Harry Met Sally?
There are so many good lines it's difficult to pick, the script is fantastic!
Have you deliberately avoided watching Meg Ryan's Sally when preparing for the role?
Yes. I knew the role well as I have seen the film many times over the years but I avoided watching the film again until we had finished our rehearsal process and then I watched it out of curiosity to see how close the stage script is to the film.
Why do you think audiences still love a good romantic comedy?
It's a great night out and romantic comedies are usually a happy ending, watching a show like this gives you a good feeling and makes you think about all the nice things about your partner and if you're not with someone it gives you that hope that you will meet the one; everyone enjoys a good giggle too.
Your stage career seems to be thriving at the moment. Are you enjoying it?
I love it, it's still all very new to me but I thrive on the challenge of performing the same thing every night and still keeping it fresh, and the instant response you get from the audience is such a buzz that you can't match on TV or film. 
Are there any dream roles you would still like to play?
Yes, I'd love to play Mary Poppins in the West End, I've loved that film since I was a little girl and also Sandy in Grease which is another role I've loved since I was little.
How do you and Rupert stop yourselves from corpsing during the "I'll Have What She's Having" scene?
We don't really get the giggles in that scene, as right from day one I just went straight into the performance, so once you've seen it once I guess it's not quite as funny. Other things tend to make us laugh, for example one night Rupert came on stage with a couple of buttons undone on his tuxedo and he looked like a stripper - very funny!
What are your plans once the tour is over?
We are touring until early July so we still have a long way to go yet with this job, so I'm concentrating on this for now. But the first thing I will do though is have a holiday! I'm going to New York for the first time so it will be great to see all the places that are mentioned in When Harry Met Sally!


Sarah Jayne Dunn was speaking to Glenn Meads

When Harry Met Sally is currently on tour and arrives at the Manchester Opera House from 10 - 15 May. For more details visit the website or to book click here.

Please click here to read Rupert Hill's interview.


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