Written by Sarah Millican

Arts

Email from Victoria Wood

2016 continues to be a dick and now we’ve had to say goodbye to the brilliant Victoria Wood. Sarah Millican recalls a very special message.

Victoria Wood on the set of Acorn Antiques, part of Victoria Wood As Seen on TV. Photo: BBC.

Victoria Wood on the set of Acorn Antiques, part of Victoria Wood As Seen on TV. Photo: BBC.

I was so sad to hear of the death of Victoria Wood. I almost cried in the supermarket when I heard, but luckily got to the car in time. She was such an inspirational figure for me. Indeed, I’d be surprised if any female comic didn’t list her as one of the main reasons they realised they could do it.

It is astonishing to think that a handful of women paved the way and actually created the job I do. One of those is Jenny Eclair, who I saw on Twitter say that all women in comedy owe Wood a huge debt of gratitude. Victoria Wood paved the way for the people who also paved the way.

From the first time I saw her on As Seen on TV right up to That Day We Sang, she has made me laugh and cry and feel warm and included. I will always be grateful and am thankful that there is a wealth of her work that will live on forever.

I never met her but we did chat on email once when I tried to book her for our Standard Issue Stands Up for Comic Relief gig last year. She had filming commitments so couldn’t join us but, at my request, sent this brilliant ‘Sorry I can’t be there’ email. What a wonderful talent. I will miss her new words.

The email:

Paula could you send this for me just the usual.

Dear Sheila Milligan

Thank you for your email inviting me to take part in INSERT NAME OF SHOW/FUN RUN/PROJECT. Obviously I am a keen supporter of INSERT NAME OF CHARITY and would love to PERFORM/RUN/PAINT PICTURE OF PAUL McCARTNEY ON BOILED EGG.

Unfortunately on the date in question I will be SPEAKING AT THE UN ON WOMEN’S RIGHTS/HELPING TO FORM A SMALL RIGHT OF CENTRE POLITICAL PARTY HEADED BY ANGELA RIPPON/CHATTING TO MY FIANCE ON DEATH ROW VIA SKYPE.

Thanks Paula of course really I will be brushing toast crumbs off my fleece and watching Storage Wars!

Victoria

@SarahMillican75

Read Susan Calman’s warm tribute to Victoria Wood here.

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Written by Sarah Millican

Sarah Millican is a comedian, writer, reformed workaholic, feminist, cat and dog mam, wife and lover of food.

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