The T-Room
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Interview with Georgina Hale (Tabatha Bag)


Whilst I was at the T-Bag reunion, Georgina Hale asked me if she could have some copies of any photographs that I had. She said that she would reimburse me for the costs, but I told her that I would do it for nothing so long as she allowed me to interview her for the T-Room. Georgina prefers to do interviews in person rather than by writing, and after a few times missing each other on the phone, we finally managed to arrange a tim, and here is the result.

I must thank Georgina once again for the gifts that she has given me (the earrings and the handbag), and also the lovely photograph of her and John together in "Take-Off".

 
 

i) How did you first become an actor? Was it something that you always wanted to do?
My real dad used to take me and my brother to the pictures, and it was a fantasy, a dream. I had to work when I was fifteen. My schooling was appalling since we were always moving around. As a result, I couldn’t read, write or spell for many years. I was working as an apprentice hairdresser, and went to Stanislavsky method studio behind Harrods. Somebody came from Vogue magazine to do an article about the studio, and he asked me if I could read a script..
“Blimey,” I thought, “I’ve never even seen a script!”. Anyway, he told me about three major drama schools. I applied, and got into one of them by the skin of my teeth.


ii) What has been the highlight/most enjoyable part of your career?

This is difficult to answer. I am not talking about jobs where you do one or two lines, but if you have a part, you try to make it the best that you can at the time, so I don’t really have a favourite.


iii) You say in your interview for the reunion DVD that you did not want to appear in children’s television, yet you ended up as T. Bag for four series. What made you change your mind?
I went up with many other actresses. At the time I considered myself a very grand dramatic actress, and I thought, “Blimey! Kids TV” – I wasn’t really interested. I remembered Bill and Ben, but that is about all I knew about childrens’ television.
I was very wrong. The writing was superb, the writers were great and everyone was wonderful. How wrong I was to turn my nose up at it.

 

iii) You had so many fantastic costumes to wear during the show, and many hundreds of costume changes. How did you feel about the costumes, and was it sometimes hard to keep changing all the time?
Ray was a genius, and they were all made on tuppence ha’penny, his assistant was very clever (Jo Allman). Between the two of them, they made me some fabulous clothes.


iv) Which of the T. Bag character costumes (i.e. the “Red Dresses”) was your favourite of the three that you had (see photos) and why?
Has to be the first one. It was a fabulous dress.


v) Do you have any lines that you remember from the T-Bag show that you particularly liked?
I don’t remember any lines. The kids in Egypt are always trying to get me to do that voice – you know, the one where T-Bag goes “Ooooooowwwww!”, so it’s more the noises really.


vi) Have you (like so many others from the cast) managed to hang on to any props or other mementos from the T. Bag show?

The last things that I had were the little purse and the earrings. I used to have the black satin dress from the Foreign Legion episode. I gave it to a Hospice shop when T-Bag was still popular, and told them it was from T-Bag and that it might raise them a good deal of money if they were to put it in the window and sell it. It never went into the window, and I suspect that the man sold it privately. There may have been another dress, which I can’t remember. It may also have gone to the hospice shop. Apart from that, I had a few bits of jewellery, all of which I have ended up giving away.


vii) Do you think that T-Bag would still be popular today firstly if it were to be released on DVD, and secondly if it were to be revived in a modernised form for TV (i.e. a new series)?
Who knows? The two writers are so clever, it would be down to them, I don’t see why not. As for a release, well, if there are all these people out there who collect things, I don’t see why it shouldn’t be popular.


viii) Would you ever consider reprising your role as T-Bag? If so, would you play the character any differently, or would you keep her just the same?
That depends on the scripts. I’d be delighted, although I could be too old. As for keeping her the same, it depends on what is written in the scripts.


ix) Could you please give us some information on what you are doing now?

I went up for a movie that will be made in Greece, and it is American money behind it. I should know about that soon.


x) Is there anything else you would like to add?
John and I are going up to Oxford, perhaps for a T-Bag get together to sign photos, etc. on either the 20th or 21st October.