Helen George might play unflappable Nurse Trixie in hit BBC1 period drama Call the Midwife, but it seems she’s not quite so calm under pressure as her 1960s alter ego…
The star is poised to be paired with her pro and perform her first Strictly dance moves this weekend, but she suffered from a few butterflies during rehearsals.
“I hadn’t really thought about it and I walked in and just went, ‘Oh my god, this is happening,'” George told us earlier this week. “We practised the bit where they introduce you for the first time and you walk down the stairs. Kirsty [Gallacher] turned around and I was just stood there doing nothing, just going ‘Someone take me home. Mum! Please come and get me!’”
“I’m not so nervous about the dancing as such – well, I am obviously. I’m really nervous about that, but the pro dancers are so good – I’m nervous about all the camera stuff because I’m not used to just being myself on camera,” she admits. “I find it really intimidating. Saying things down the barrel and all that stuff is so foreign to me. I’m getting sweaty palms just talking about it!”
But the costumes are keeping her calm… “All the glitter. That’s the best bit. The dresses are incredible and they are things that you’d never wear. If someone in real life said, ‘Wear that,’ you’d be like, ‘There’s no way I’m wearing that!’ But you get in the mood. [The costume department] are like just have it a bit shorter and a bit lower, have some more glitter!”
And she can’t wait to start training on the set of Call the Midwife with her chums.
“I’m doing both at the same time. Most of the time it’ll be alright. It’ll just be the days I’ve got loads of medical stuff, because it’s always quite hard to learn the language of all the medical things, so that will be tricky. But it will be lovely having all my mates from the cast of Midwife meeting the dancers and all of that stuff. It’ll be really fun.”
Strictly Come Dancing launches on Saturday at 7:20pm on BBC1