A Birmingham School of Acting graduate has landed a lead role in a new Channel 4 comedy series.
Nicola Coughlan will appear in Being Human writer Lisa McGee’s new work Derry Girls.
Set against the backdrop of the troubles in Northern Ireland during the 1990s, the comedy centres around 16-year-old Erin Quinn who lives with her uncompromising mother, her long-suffering father and the fearsome ‘Granda Joe’ – a man whose love for his daughters and granddaughters is surpassed only by his contempt for his son-in-law.
Nicola plays the role of Erin’s best friend, Clare Devlin, who is described as clever, ambitious and – when faced with school Principal Sister Michael – an enthusiastic grass.
Originally from Galway in the west of Ireland, Nicola graduated from Birmingham School of Acting in 2011.
“I feel incredibly lucky to be part of a Channel 4 show that has four strong, comedic female leads,” she said.
Since graduating, Nicola has performed in theatre productions of Chapel Street, Jess and Joe Forever, and Duck, as well as appearing on TV soap Doctors.
The rising star said she hoped her appearance would inspire other young actors. She added: “I feel that it is crucial to support women within the arts – if you’re a female actor who feels frustrated by the lack of quality roles, make sure you’re out there supporting the women who are leading the way.
“There are a lot of women right now like Michaela Coel, Bryony Kimmings, and even Birmingham School of Acting’s own Camilla Whitehill, who are blazing an incredible trail and it’s essential that we support and learn from them.”
Derry Girls will air on Channel 4 later this year.