Five minutes with… The Inbetweeners actress Lizzie Stables

Published: Wednesday 30th March 2016 by Tom Drinkall

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Actress Lizzie Stables is perhaps best known for playing Jay’s girlfriend Chloe in much-loved E4 sitcom The Inbetweeners.

She chats to HEY Today about her upcoming show, Unearthed, which plays at Hull Truck Theatre on April 1-2.

Hi Lizzie, what’s Unearthed about?

The main story is set 10 years after the opening scene, in which we see twins Eliza (Lizzie’s character) and Ben (Chris Ashby) who are celebrating their 18th birthday by burying a time capsule near where they live. They then receive a phone call where they find out that their dad has had a stroke.

The main bulk of the play takes place 10 years later when their father has sadly died and during the course of him being infirmed they’ve fallen out over his caring arrangements. The main story is about them being brought back together through a series of tasks their dad has left for them in his will. So the play is about them completing these tasks and mending their relationship.

Why should the people of Hull see the play?

This is a play that almost everybody can relate to: it tells the story that, sadly, is very common to a lot of people but tells it in a light-hearted way. We performed the show last year for three weeks and it was subsequently listed in The Guardian as one of their readers’ favourite shows, alongside mainly massive shows like Gypsy.

It really struck a chord with a lot of people and it’s a lovely story that makes you think about yourself and the way you’d react in those kind of situations. It’s also extremely funny and everyone who’s seen it has reported going away feeling uplifted and said it was heart-warming. I think it’s a wonderful way to spend an evening.

The Guardian accolade must have been a proud moment?

Yes, definitely. We couldn’t believe it, we were really surprised and pleased. It’s a show that I’m really proud of and I’m so happy to be doing it again. To have that (accolade), it asserts what you feel about the show.

Your involvement in Unearthed goes beyond just acting, doesn’t it?

I’ve been involved from the very beginning of the piece. Myself and the writer Alys (Metcalf) came up with the story together. It was a story we wanted to tell because having to care for sick parents is something that affects so many people and it affects family relationships a lot. We were keen to tell an uplifting story as opposed to it being an ‘issue’ play.

I’ve been with it from the very beginning and it’s a really good part for me to play because I’ve seen it change and grow. It’s all been written for me, but my character is very different to me.

Have you performed at Hull Truck Theatre before?

No, it’s my first time. It’s such a great, prestigious, well-known, well-respected venue and I’ve always wanted to perform there so I’m very excited. I’m really looking forward to it. We’ve mainly focused on the south so far so this will be the first time we’ve taken it further afield and I’m really pleased to be able to be performing there.

It’s been seven years since you appeared on The Inbetweeners. What are your memories of working on the show?

I’m so happy to have had the chance to be in it because it’s something that everybody knows and everybody feels a connection to it because they can relate to the characters and it’s one of those iconic British shows now. To think that I was part of it is just so amazing and I’m so proud to have been in it.

It was my first job after leaving drama school so it was pretty amazing. (It was) an amazing way to be thrown into the deep end, it was great. It’s obviously been great for my career just having that behind me, (has been) really helpful in other situations.

Which of the four main characters – Will, Simon, Jay and Neil – were you most like at school?

Probably Neil – the person that everybody laughs at.

What other projects have you got planned after Unearthed?

Folio (her theatre company which brought Unearthed to the stage) is my company and we’ll be thinking of our next show, which hopefully we’ll bring to Hull. We did another show in February, Reel Life, with a few preview performances, which we’re now thinking of touring on a wider scale.

I’ve been doing a radio play called Home Front, which is a series on BBC Radio 4. It’s a story that runs the whole length of time that the First World War would have been (each episode is set 100 years to the day before broadcast).

At the moment series six is on and I’m in series seven (which airs in April), and then it’s going to carry on for however many series until the length of the war would be over.

It’s about people in different areas of the UK who are at home while the war was going on and how it affects them. I play a 15-year-old girl called Effie who is from Devon, who spends her time at home, helping her mum on the farm.

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Published: Wednesday 30th March 2016 by Tom Drinkall

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