Actress crowned for royal performance

Holly Fairburn with her NODA Award. (s)
Holly Fairburn with her NODA Award. (s)

A Burnley actress has exchanged one crown for another, having scooped a NODA Award after a five-year hiatus from amateur dramatics.

Holly Fairburn (34) was among three members of the Pendle Hippodrome Theatre Company to be named among the North-West finalists.

She beat nine other actors to be crowned the Best Female Lead in a Play for her performance as Queenie in Blackadder back in June.

“I was grinning from ear-to-ear for the rest of the night.

“I didn’t expect to win, as I haven’t done anything like that since I had my first child,” said the mum-of-two.

“When they called my name on the night I did a double-take and turned to my ask my boyfriend if I’d heard it right. There’s a film of me doing the double-take live on Facebook.”

The actress is no stranger to the stage having been performing since the age of four with St James’ Players, until she left to have children.

Among her performances was the role of Dopey in a staging of Snow White, in which her mother took the leading female role while her sister played another of the seven dwarves, Happy.

Returning to the theatre world, she discovered St James’ Players had disbanded and went on to audition for the part of Queenie with the Hippodrome.

“I love Blackadder. I used to watch it with my mum and dad and Queenie is my favourite character.”

“I’ve always loved performing in pantos and comedies most of all.”

Jack Herbert was also among the line-up of winners, having been named the Best Supporting Male in a Musical for his part as Roger in Grease last March while Dale Blackburn took home an award for Best Youth Comedy Performance as The Cowardly Lion in The Wizard of Oz.

The winners will now go on to the NODA North-West Regional Awards in Manchester in April at the Mercure Manchester Piccadilly Hotel.