INTERVIEW: BBC South Today presenter Sally Taylor takes to the stage

South Today presenter Sally Taylor admits her first reaction was 'You've got the wrong Sally Taylor' when Southampton's Mayflower Theatre approached her.

Did she want to take to the stage in the cult show The Vagina Monologues?

"I was gobsmacked!" she says. But also flattered, honoured and humbled – and delighted to accept.

"I am so thrilled to do it," says Sally. "It is such a gift."

Sex has never been funnier or more poignant than in the show's collection of highly-original stories gathered by the show's creator, New Yorker Eve Ensler.

Ensler asked more than 200 women of all ages, ethnic backgrounds and walks of life to share their most intimate secrets in 'vagina interviews' on such normally taboo topics as birth, sex, orgasms and relationships.

The results were truly revealing. The show has gone on to become a global phenomenon with multiple productions in more than 25 countries and open-ended runs in New York and Paris.

Sally's reasons for accepting it are simple: "Sometimes in life

you have just got to have new challenges. I am notorious for putting myself under pressure. Sometimes it is a good thing. Sometimes it is a bad thing!

"But when I heard Anita Dobson was going to be in the cast, I had to do it. I thought I would love to be on stage with her.

"She has all that history that goes with her. I grew up watching EastEnders at the time that she was in it with Dirty Den. It will be incredible to be on stage with her.

"Some of the stories in the show are very, very funny, some are very poignant. Some are lusty and sometimes they are quite outrageous. It is all about giving women a voice.

"I think it is fair to say the majority of the audience will be women, but I hope some men will be there. I am told they thoroughly enjoy it as well.

"But by its very title, it is a show about women. It's about sharing things that women don't usually talk about."

Sally joins the show for the Southampton week. She gets the script and will have a few rehearsals.

"I would rather ab lib because that's what I do. I don't like words (written down). But for this I am going to be relying very heavily on Anita and the others, the ones with the massive experience."

To get in the stage mood, Sally will be limbering up at the Kings Theatre in Southsea on November 15 in a show which has absolutely nothing to do with The Vagina Monologues despite its name, Sally laughs.

Up Close And Personal With Sally Taylor And Friends features a host of celebrity guests. The famous faces from BBC South Today join forces with celebrities from the south to set the night alive with glamour, fun and stardust.

All profits go to Children in Need. See for the latest line-up.

Tickets for The Vagina Monologues are on 02380 711811. The show is at Southampton's Mayflower from November 16-21.

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