FINGLAS actress Fiona Carty made her West End debut this week as Imelda Quirke in The Commitments.
As part of the ensemble for the hit musical Fiona was also selected as an understudy but was unsure if she would ever get her moment in the spotlight.
But on Monday night she took to the stage for the first time and admitted that it has given her a taste for stardom.
“I had the best time on stage, it was unbelievable,” Fiona told the Herald.
Her mum Vivienne was forced to dash to London at the last minute to catch her debut – arriving in the city just 30 minutes before the curtain went up.
“I think she was shaking so much she could barely get her phone out to take pictures,” she laughed.
The West End production is the musical adaptation of Roddy Doyle’s famous novel of the same name. The Kilbarrack native re-worked the story for stage himself. Quirke is one of the female backing singers for the soul band who are the stars of the tale.
Fiona admitted that she took the long route to stage acting, completing a business degree in DCU first.
But just a year after graduating with a masters in drama the Dubliner has had a steady flow of jobs.
Last Christmas saw her play Wendy in a Peter Pan production in the North. Now, her work with The Commitments will last until September next year – giving her ample opportunity to slip into Imelda’s shoes again.
For the 26-year-old it has always been stage acting that has attracted her to the profession.
“I love theatre, I love the thrill of it. It’s live so there’s that risk involved. You never know what’s going to happen,” she said.
“Also I’ve been singing since I was a kid which lends itself to theatre.”
Her dream roles include Penny from hairspray and Mrs Johnson from the musical Blood Brothers.
But for now she is glad that her risk to move into the world of theatre is paying off so quickly.
Her proud parents Aidan and Vivienne she said have always supported her. “My dad always told me to just go for it,” she revealed.