FORMER Casualty actress Janine Mellor is taking on the role of Agafya in the celebrated Russian comedy Marriage.
Janine is best known for playing Kelsey, the big-hearted nurse with a naughty past, in the long-running medical drama from 2005 to 2009.
But now she’s stepping away from playing the ‘tart with a heart’ to become blushing bride-to-be Agafya in the 19th century play.
“I’ve been quite lucky, I usually get interesting characters.
“Kelsey was really good fun. In South Riding I played a prostitute!
“They are always a bit of a tart with a heart but every character brings something different.”
Since her Casualty departure, Mellor has gone onto appear in several plays as well as TV mini-series South Riding and Coronation Street.
But she hadn’t ruled out a return to the BBC medical drama.
“I’d never say never no to returning to it,” she added. “If they came up with something interesting. But I have no regrets from moving on.”
Mellor said she was looking forward to doing more of her first love in acting; theatre.
“When I was at drama school, I loved doing theatre. I love rehearsals, being able to go through and understand the character. I’d love to do a musical, I really would but it’s not gone that way. I’ve learned to love TV. I’d like to do more theatre but if a really good job in TV came up I’d have to do it. And of course, if Steven Speilberg called me tomorrow...”
Yet when it came to viewing, Mellor admitted she wasn’t an avid soap fan.
“They go through good phases and bad phases. When you have to produce so many episodes, you can’t keep it Oscar-worthy every episode but there are some really good people working in them.”
Laurie Slade’s version of Gogol’s classic Marriage, is at the Belgrade Theatre, Coventry from February 2- 23.