In 2013, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time won 7 Olivier Awards including Best Play. It is based on Mark Haddon’s award-winning novel, adapted by Simon Stephens and directed by Marianne Elliott. Sarah Woodward plays the role of ‘Siobhan and Ensemble’.
Sarah has extensive credits on stage, film and television. Her theatre credits include: National Theatre’s The Cherry Orchard, The Hour We Knew Nothing of Each Other, Present Laughter, Wild Oats, The Sea. RSC’s The Tempest, Love’s Labour’s Lost, The Venetian Twins, Murder in the Cathedral, Henry V, Camille, Hamlet, Richard III, Red Noses. West End credits include Les Liaisons Dangereuses, The Real Thing, Tom & Clem, London Assurance, Artist Descending a Staircase.
Other theatre includes Jumpy, The Merry Wives of Windsor, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Comedy of Errors, Woman in Mind, Much Ado About Nothing, Romeo and Juliet, The Winter’s Tale, Charley’s Aunt and more.
Sarah’s television credits include DCI Banks, Law & Order: UK, Doctors, New Tricks, The Bill, Hear the Silence, The Inspector Pitt Mysteries, Poirot: Death in the Clouds, Casualty, The Two of Us, and more. Film credits include Bright Young Things, I Capture the Castle, Doctor Sleep, The House of Angelo.
Sarah Woodward is an award-winning actress:
The Real Thing – Tony Award nomination, Best Supporting Actress
Tom & Clem – Olivier Award, Best Supporting Actress
The Tempest – Shakespeare Globe Classic Award
Artist Descending a Staircase – Clarence Derwent Award
Q&A with Sarah Woodward from The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.
Your parents were both actors. What was your first introduction to the world of acting?
I remember seeing my Dad in a series called ‘Callan’ on TV, and thinking he LOOKED like my dad, but did not SOUND like him, and that must be what acting was all about. I thought it looked like an exciting way to earn a living.
Your brothers, sister and husband are also actors. How does the world of theatre fit into your family?
It is a job, so it’s not something we talk about endlessly. It is a family business, but not around the dinner table…
Have you ever thought of another career away from acting – if so what?
I have often thought about different careers, but never followed through. I would like a little tea shop or antique shop….
What was your first professional acting role?
My first professional acting was 2 years with the RSC, playing ‘play as cast’ so lots of maids, tarts, and one boy in the Henry V army! (Kenneth Branagh’s Henry V).
What would be your three favourite stage roles?
Three favourite stage roles would be: Kitty in Tom & Clem (Aldwych), Monica in Present Laughter (NT) and Adriana in The Comedy of Errors (Shakespeare’s Globe).
You have performed in several RSC productions, and at The National Theatre. As an actress, how has this influenced your career?
The RSC and The NT are great powerhouses to work for. I would never turn stuff down at the NT. I love the atmosphere there. The RSC is harder while my children are at school. But they are growing up fast, so maybe one day I’ll venture to Stratford again. I made friends for life at both the Stratford seasons I did.
If you had a speech at Speakers’ Corner about ‘theatre’, what would be the focus of your content?
Theatre is a necessity, not a luxury.
Can you tell us about Siobhan?
Siobhan is a Guardian, Angel, Mentor, Teacher. She is: Light, Conscience, A Cypher, A Presence, Trust, Everywoman, and ‘a friend, not a stranger’.
How would you describe the play compared with Mark Haddon’s award-winning novel?
I remember where I was when I read the book, 11 years ago. It had a huge impact on me. The play is part of the book, obviously, but not a replica. It couldn’t be. It brings the story to life, people wanted to see the book ‘come to life’, so here it is!
What is the main reason as to why The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is such a successful play?
It is the perfect mix of light, sound, design, and story-telling. It has mass appeal for all ages. It is ‘Metatheatrical’. Word of mouth is stronger than we know.
Why should everyone get along to see The Curious Incident of the Night-Time?
Everyone should see Curious because it will make you think twice about the out of the ordinary person sitting next to you in the tube/bus/train. It will make you think outside the box.
Interviewed by Neil Cheesman
Follow on Twitter @LondonTheatre1
The Curious Incident of the Dog In The Night-Time
Christopher, fifteen years old, stands beside Mrs Shears’ dead dog. It has been speared with a garden fork, it is seven minutes after midnight and Christopher is under suspicion. He records each fact in the book he is writing to solve the mystery of who murdered Wellington. He has an extraordinary brain, exceptional at maths while ill-equipped to interpret everyday life. He has never ventured alone beyond the end of his road, he detests being touched and he distrusts strangers. But his detective work, forbidden by his father, takes him on a frightening journey that upturns his world.
Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time was originally published in 2003. It is the winner of more than seventeen literary awards, including prizes in Japan, Holland and Italy as well as the Whitbread Book of the Year Award in the UK in 2004.
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
35-37 Shaftesbury Avenue, London, W1D 6AR
Evenings: Monday to Saturday 7.30pm
Matinees: Thursday and Saturday 2.30pm
Running Time: 2 hours 45 minutes
Age Restrictions: Recommended Age: 13+
Show Opened: 24th June 2013