Brenda Blethyn on 'best kiss she'd ever had': ‘Besotted by him’


The much-loved actor features in comedy drama Little Voice, which airs on Channel 5 this afternoon at 4:30pm. The Nineties comedy sees Jane Horrocks star as a reclusive girl with a secret talent ‒ she can perfectly mimic famous singers, including Shirley Bassey and Judy Garland. Little Voice’s talents are soon recognised by sleazy agent Ray Say, played by Michael Caine, who is willing to endure the advances of the singer’s predatory mother to make money from the young girl’s voice. 

Ray Say subsequently pushes Little Voice into a public performance at the local club.

The comedy came out in the late Nineties, just two years after Brenda had propelled herself to international fame by starring as the lead in Secrets & Lies. 

She received multiple awards for her performance in Mike Leigh’s 1996 drama, including Best Actress at Cannes, a BAFTA, a Golden Globe and an Oscar nomination. 

Brenda’s performance as Little Voice’s mother Mari Hoff, earned her a second Academy Award nomination in 1998.

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Yet despite her on-screen success, Brenda lives a very private life away from set.

However, the 76-year-old once opened up about the best kiss she had ever had, which was shared with her husband, who she met at the National Theatre in the Seventies.

When the Daily Mail asked, “what was the best kiss you’ve had” in 2016, Brenda replied: “[It was] from my husband Michael Mayhew. 

“I was besotted by him when we first met at the National Theatre. 

Brenda met her husband, Michael Mayhew, in the Seventies following her divorce from Alan Blethyn.

Brenda and Michael, who is a director at the National Theatre, tied the knot in 2010 after three decades together.

She explained to Radio Times: “We were getting on a bit and it seemed the sensible thing to do. 

“Neither of us were going anywhere so it just presents a problem if one of us pops our clogs.”

Brenda married her first husband Alan when she was just 19 years old, but the couple split in heartbreaking circumstances.

She told The Guardian in 2013: “My brothers looked after me and protected me from predators ‒ so well that I was quite innocent sexually when I came to marry for the first time at 19.

“My first husband, Alan Blethyn, just fell for someone else. 

“I was devastated when he left, but he really was a lovely fella, and the other lady is nice too.

“It’s just one of those things.”

Watch Little Voice on Channel 5 this afternoon at 4:30pm.


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