5 minutes with: MyAnna Buring: 'You're not a proper actor if you haven't had nightmare auditions'
The Ripper Street and Twilight star chatted to us about her route into the industry and breaking into theatre
I grew up in the middle east where there weren't any actors or drama schools. We did a lot of drama in my school which I loved but I didn't really know how I could get involved with it properly until I went to Bristol University. It was there where I realised drama schools exist but I still felt there was a sort of training that I was missing. I was one of those young actors who didn't know what to do with their hands and I thought going to drama school would be a luxurious way to try and solve that problem.
My family have always been of the view that you can never learn too much and you're never too old for learning. I ended up going to LAMDA after university where I did a three year course but I never took any of it for granted. I didn't have a clue how agents and that whole system worked, I just thought I'd make my own shows and try and learn how to produce them with friends and make it happen.
Acting was the one thing that stuck. Kids say 'I want to be an astronaut or a dog sitter' and I suppose acting is the one thing that allows you do all of those things. But it's also a great job in the sense that you're always learning new skills and researching so you get to delve in and dip into different spheres of the world than your own which is what's so interesting. I love my job and feel so lucky to be able to do it.
I'd never even considered doing film and TV. I had always done theatre and I was much more comfortable on stage, I got film and TV roles by chance. I found it hard because my first couple of jobs hadn't been in theatre so I was considered more of a TV/film actress and probably lacking in the skills needed for theatre, despite the fact that that was all I'd ever really trained in.
It took many years before I was seen for theatre. I did Strangers on a Train last year and that was the first time I'd been on stage for seven years. The Wasp is the first time I've done a proper two-hander in eight years. It's amazing to be back and it's a great reminder of what's so magic about stage which is that immediacy that you get with an audience.
You're not a proper actor if you haven't had nightmare auditions. I've had ones where I've just wanted the ground to swallow me up whole and I've left thinking I should take this as a sign to stop and never do it again. I don't buy that any actor hasn't gone through that. It's awful, you feel so stupid and you feel like such an idiot but that's another great thing about acting, you're constantly reminded to be humble. You pick yourself up, you brush yourself off and you carry on then eventually they become funny anecdotes.
The Wasp is a brilliant new piece of writing from Morgan Lloyd Malcolm, I think she's exceptional. In a nutshell, the play looks at the consequences of our actions when we were at school and questions whether they actually do have any consequences and whether they should have any consequences. I think that's quite an important thing for us all to be considering because unfortunately bullying is still rife and you'd be hard pushed to find anyone who doesn't have some experience on either side of the fence. If we don't tackle it early on and take responsibility as adults around children then it can have a long term effect.
I've just done quite a bit of telly this year. I've got a show called Prey which is on ITV at the moment and in January, season four of Ripper Street will be coming out on Amazon. Straight after the play I'll be back in Dublin filming season five so it's quite lovely to punctuate all that telly with this really fabulous thought-provoking play.
The Wasp runs at Trafalgar Studios until 16 January.