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Joan Collins: one night only
She might be almost 80, but Joan Collins is quite possibly the most glamorous woman alive.
And, for one night only, she will be sharing some of her secrets with the people of Bournemouth when she takes to the Pavilion stage on Wednesday.
The actress, best known for her role as scheming Alexis Carrington in Dynasty, is currently touring the UK with her acclaimed one-woman show, One Night with Joan.
Theatregoers are promised an intimate evening in the company of a true English Hollywood legend as Joan, known for her engaging wit and frankness regales the audience with stories from her celebrated career.
She talks of those legendary bitch-fights with Dynasty co-star Linda Evans and screens rare film footage from her life.
Joan promises to reveal all about her screen test for Cleopatra and why she lost the role to Elizabeth Taylor, her on-set encounters with the formidable Bette Davis and many others, including Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, Paul Newman and Richard Burton.
Her relationships are also expected to be put under the spotlight – the woman who famously said: “I’ve never yet met a man who could look after me. I don’t need a husband. What I need is a wife,” has actually had five husbands.
Her current beau is theatre manager Percy Gibson and the couple live between their homes in Los Angeles, London, New York and the South of France.
As the brand ambassador and spokeswoman for a number of cosmetic, health and beauty companies Joan certainly knows her stuff.
She is also a big name in the fashion world, but has previously spoken of her lack of enthusiasm for many of today’s designers.
“Clothes today are not flattering to the average woman,” she told Saga magazine recently.“I come from an era in which a dress was made to flatter a woman. Now the woman has to make the dress look good.
“Unless you’re 5ft 10ins, 25 and weigh seven stones, you can’t look good in those things. You look stupid.”
But the 79-year-old actress admits she still feels the pressure to maintain a perfect hourglass figure, revealing at the launch of her show that she has pretty much spent her entire life on a diet, once even being prescribed the amphetamine speed to help her lose weight for a film role.
“Your hips always had to look slimmer, your face thinner,” she said.
“As an actress you are always on a diet when working. I was told to take speed to help get the weight off. At times I wouldn’t even get work because I was too fat.”
Joan hasn’t acted since 2010 and admitted she finds it hard to find roles as she grows older.
“In Hollywood you’ve flowered in your 20s, peaked in your 30s and it is rare for an actress to be a leading lady in her 40s and rarer still in her 50s.
“After that it is character parts if you’re lucky. After 60 a woman is like Africa. Everyone knows where it is but nobody wants to go there.”
But she remains reluctant to reverse the years, after trying Botox once.
“It hurt like hell,” she said.
“You know what they say about plastic surgery? It’s the plain woman’s revenge.”
- For more of Joan’s classic one-liners, see her at Bournemouth’s Pavilion Theatre on Wednesday April 24 at 7.45pm. Tickets, priced £35 and £30, are available from bhlivetickets.co.uk or 0844 576 3000.
Joan Collins: a showbiz life
Joan Collins has appeared in more than 118 feature films and TV shows.
Her novels and memoirs have sold more than 50 million copies worldwide and been translated into 30 languages.
She is a regular diarist for The Spectator and a contributor to The Daily Mail, The Telegraph, The Times and Harper’s Bazaar.
On stage, Joan Collins has performed on Broadway, the West End, and in national tours in the UK and North America.
She is devoted to the well-being of women, children and families and regularly lends her support and celebrity to causes that include finding a cure for breast cancer and empowering children with learning disabilities.
She is also a committed patron of Shooting Star/Chase Hospice for Children. In 1997 she received an OBE for her lifetime contribution to the arts and her continuing charity work.
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