Sunday with Felicity Kendal: ‘If I don’t stay active, I’ll fossilise’

When not so busy, the actor likes to spend time with the family

Sunday morning… Isn’t currently the weekend for me, I’ve got a performance of Anything Goes at 2.30pm. I’m not asleep until past midnight after Saturday night’s show and I wake up at 8am exhausted and drink coffee. At noon a car comes to collect me.

Do you enjoy it? I can’t unwind if I’ve worked, especially in a show full of cheering and music. I’ve more adrenaline by the end than I do at the start – it’s a problem with working weekends. But there’s something special about a cheeky Sunday matinée. But I miss family time, so it’s a mixed blessing.

And on days off? Lolling around with no plans. Ideally I’d be in the countryside fiddling around in the garden before the barbecue gets started. Family meals with all the grandchildren around are my favourite – eating together is a ritual that’s so important.

Sundays growing up? They didn’t exist; I worked every day with my parents. They ran a touring theatre company in India, so we were often travelling to our next destination. Occasionally we’d have family time, all of us together in Mumbai at my sister’s. We’d drive to Juhu Beach and swim in the sea, before eating on a hotel veranda.

The perfect Sunday lunch? Back in India, on Sundays my sister’s cook Boo Baa made this wonderful prawn curry. He’d serve it with a feast of vegetables, dals and salads. A roast and two veg continues to feel alien to me. I’m not sure anyone in my family can make gravy.

Do you exercise? Outside, walking through the open air, or at the gym which I try to do regularly. It’s nothing to do with looks, it’s just if I don’t stay active, I’ll fossilise. You have to keep moving at my age or you run out of energy.

Sunday evening? I love to read the Sunday papers late at night in bed, my brain filling up with ideas and suggestions. There are new books to read and recipes to try; fascinating events and words of wisdom. By Monday the papers are in the bin, and I’ve totally forgotten everything.

Anything Goes is at the Barbican until 6 November


Michael Segalov

The GuardianTramp

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