Young actress Rose Reynolds modestly says “blink and you’ll miss me” of her appearance in TV drama Our Zoo but she is certainly centre stage at the Crucible in Twelfth Night.
Rose plays Viola, who becomes separated from her twin brother, Sebastian, in a shipwreck in Shakespeare’s comedy.
Confusion reigns as the Countess Olivia falls in love with Viola, who is disguised as a boy, Cesario, and has found work in the service of the Duke of Orsino.
Cesario is actually supposed to convince Olivia that the Duke loves her. To make matters worse, Viola fancies her new boss.
Sebastian’s arrival adds to the chaos of mistaken identities and he in turn falls in love with Olivia.
At the same time, several characters including Sir Toby Belch, Sir Andrew Aguecheek and the fool, Feste, become caught up in a plot to make Olivia’s pompous steward, Malvolio, believe that Olivia has fallen for him.
Rose said of Viola: “She’s in her early 20s and doesn’t really know what’s going on. She’s separated from her twin she’s been with all her life but never gives up hope. Whatever situation she finds herself in, she always sees the positive,
“Every person she meets is affected by her magical spell. She doesn’t really know what she’s doing but will just hurl herself into these situations she has got herself into.
“All these characters are in turn affected by her, everyone thinking on their feet.”
Rose said she admired the character when she studied at the famous Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, which she graduated from in 2012.
“She’s never ‘oh woe is me’. She thinks ‘how can I better myself and make this work for everybody?.
“I always wanted to play her. She’s a fantastic role. I’m so happy and grateful I’m getting the opportunity now.
“I’m figuring stuff out as I go along so I can really relate to her.”
Rose appeared in a pub scene in the first episode of new BBC drama series Our Zoo as the girlfriend of Ralf Little.
He plays Billy Atkinson, the ‘jack the lad’ brother-in-law of George Mottershead (Lee Ingleby), in the story based on the Mottershead family’s real-life adventure in setting up Chester Zoo in the 1930s.
She had a larger role in the film comedy, The World’s End, starring Simon Pegg and Nick Frost as two of a group of friends who meet up to finish a fabled pub crawl from their youth and find that reaching the pub in the title won’t be easy.
Rose was one of a trio of girls at the Mermaid pub who, siren-like, try to seduce the lads to halt their journey.
Rose said of the comedy duo who also created Hot Fuzz and Sean of the Dead: “They were really kind and looked after us. Just to have that as my first film role was brilliant.”
She’s also been through the TV actor’s rite of passage that is the daytime soap Doctors.
However, as a classically-trained actor who has already worked for the Royal Shakespeare Company, Rose said she’s feeling right at home at the Crucible and enjoying getting to know the city too.
Twelfth Night is at the Crucible from next Thursday, September 18, to October 18. Tickets from the theatre box office, online at http://www.sheffieldtheatres.co.uk/ or by calling 0114 249 6000.