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Soaps Interview

Catherine Tyldesley (Eva Price, Corrie)

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Eva Price outside the Rovers in Coronation Street

© ITV

Former Lilies and Emmerdale star Catherine Tyldesley recently landed the biggest role of her career to date as she joined the cast of Coronation Street as Eva Price, part of the new family who are taking over at the Rovers Return. Arriving in Weatherfield after her mum Stella becomes the pub's new landlady, it's immediately clear that Eva isn't pleased with her new home on the cobbles and her selfish attitude doesn't go down well with Stella's boyfriend Karl. Digital Spy recently caught up with Catherine to hear about life at Corrie and what's to come from Eva.

How would you describe the character of Eva?
"Eva is a little bit of a princess! She's been spoiled rotten, so she's somewhat high maintenance and a little bit of a drama queen. She's definitely used to getting her own way. Eva absolutely adores her mum and they've got a great relationship. When she first comes into the street, certain circumstances mean that she's a little bit more angry than she normally is. But she does have a softer side, which I think we'll see further on down the line."

How does it feel to be part of such a big show?
"It's great. Corrie's always been where my heart is. We followed the show when I was younger. My family love it, my grandparents love it, and I love it. I knew some of the cast already, so I'd always try to follow it as much as I could. My family are over the moon, and I'm very lucky that this is a new, exciting and larger-than-life character. I feel very privileged and excited."

How does working on Coronation Street compare to working on Emmerdale?
"It's completely different, but I can't explain why! I think partly because I knew some of the cast already, so that does make a big difference. Also, when I was on Emmerdale, it was James Sutton and I stuck in a prison together for three-and-a-half months on our own, so here it's nice to be working with so many different people!"

Have any of the Emmerdale gang been in touch to wish you well in the new role?
"Yeah, James and I are great friends and he sent me a text when I told him that I'd got the part - he said that he was really proud of me and that it was great news. James has been incredibly supportive and everyone else has too."

Apparently there was a lot of competition for the role of Eva?
"I believe there were quite a few girls up for the part, but I didn't get to meet any of the other auditionees - I think everyone was just in and out separately. I feel incredibly lucky that they felt I should take on the role of Eva - it's a great honour."

Stella, Karl and Eva outside the Rovers in Coronation Street
Storyline-wise, we've heard that Eva and Karl don't get along too well! Why is that?
"I think it's because they're both quite similar. When Eva first joins the street, she's had a little bit of turmoil with past relationships and things like that, so I think she feels like she wants to be quite selfish at the moment, which annoys Karl. But she's always been full of self-importance because she's always been spoiled - she's not known any different."

How does Eva feel about being in Weatherfield?
"Right now, she's really focused on herself. She doesn't want to be in The Rovers and she doesn't want to be on the street at all when we first meet her! She comes in with a lot of angst."

There was a newspaper report last month that said Eva is a lesbian character - can you clear that one up for us?
"I have no idea where that came from! She loves the boys, definitely."

Is there anyone in particular who catches her eye on the street?
"I'm not sure just yet, but I don't think she'll be out of a relationship for too long! But it would have to be someone who's on her wavelength. Eva is very intelligent, so she gets very bored and frustrated with people who aren't on her level."

Stella counsels Eva
Has there been much room to put your own stamp on the character of Eva?
"Definitely, and I think that's a big part of the appeal of doing something like Coronation Street - you are given such a gift. You are given these wonderful characters where the beginnings of them have been etched out for you, but to a certain extent you get to play with them quite a lot. There are all sorts of traits that Eva has that the writers and I have picked up on and would like her to have. It's great and it's so nice to have a character that I know I'm going to be able to play with for a substantial amount of time. We'll get to see her grow up a little bit, which is great."

We've heard that Katherine Kelly is a good friend of yours, so are you enjoying working with her?
"It's so lovely, as I had my very first television job with Kate - we did No Angels together. She completely took me under my wing then, and she has done ever since. When I found out that she was doing Corrie four or five years ago, I was over the moon that she was going to be nearby in Manchester, and now it's great to be working on the show with her!"

Will Eva and Becky be friends or will there be tension there?
"There's some tension there because Becky isn't pleased about the newcomers at The Rovers. Also, Becky and Eva are completely different - you could not get any more different than Becky and Eva. Eva likes to hold her nose up in the air and she's somewhat of a snob, so she would quite possibly look down her nose at somebody like Becky! She won't have much time for her - she's very judgemental, very quick to judge."

How about Eva and Tracy Barlow?
"At the moment I'm not quite sure what their relationship will be like, but I do think that Tracy is a bit more on Eva's level intelligence-wise - although that intelligence is often used for evil! I think those two are slightly more on a par."

Finally, Katherine said on Twitter that she's tipping you to be the next big star in Corrie, so do you think Eva will be quite a memorable character for the future?
"Oh, bless her! I hope so, because she's very different and I can't compare her to any other character. She's not similar to anyone else, so I think she's definitely going to make her mark on the street. And for Kate to say that is lovely. I mean, Kate's one of my role models - I think she's an incredible actress, so for her to say that means a lot to me."

Catherine Tyldesley's first Coronation Street episode airs on Friday at 7.30pm on ITV1.

> Read a full Q&A with Michelle Collins and John Michie about Stella and Karl
> Coronation Street: Bonus chat with Michelle Collins
> Coronation Street: Bonus chat with John Michie
> Read our Coronation Street spoilers and news Get the Inside Soap magazine on your iPhone or iPad

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