Carrie Hope Fletcher from Harrow has it all going on. At just 24, she has already earned her credentials as an established West End actress, singer, songwriter and Sunday Times bestselling author.
She made her West End debut as Young Éponine in Les Misérables at just seven years old in 2001. Then following roles in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Mary Poppins, Fletcher replaced Danielle Hope as Éponine in Les Misérables at the Queen’s Theatre, London in June 2013.
The only British actor to play both young Éponine and older Éponine in the production, Carrie’s standout performance earned the young actress a coveted WhatsOnStage ‘Best Takeover In A Role’ award for the captivating performance in 2014.
Now the young star - who has just released new novel All That She Can See - is coming to Belfast as part of the highly anticipated UK production of The Addams Family, also starring Samantha Womack and Les Dennis, when she’ll be taking to the stage as the famous tale’s Wednesday Addams.
“I had wanted to play older Éponine since I was a child, but I quickly realised how many other young women had the same dream,” Carrie - whose famous brother is Tom Fletcher of pop band McFly - told The Guide.
“She is the ultimate ‘underdog’ role, and everyone wants to play her. So you can only imagine how excited I was when I not only got the part but then won an award for it. It was just insane, it was everything I had ever dreamed of.
“How many people get to say they are actually living out their childhood dream? Tom and I grew up with extremely supportive parents with normal jobs but they always had the belief system that you can do anything if you work hard enough at it.”
Carrie, who began acting at the tender age of three, says she never used to get nervous, “When I was a kid I didn’t even think about what I was doing.
“I didn’t realise the scale of it all and when I look back and think I was in the original cast of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang - it is so huge!
“I almost wish I had of realised the magnitude of what I was doing back then and appreciated it more, but at the same time, I’m glad that I didn’t - as I think I would have freaked out,” Carrie laughed.
“For the first few performances of a show I still get a little bit nervous, as you never know what to expect and how it is going to go.
“But, once the first couple of performances are over you get into a routine and you get into the swing of things and it just becomes normal.
“As crazy as it sounds, it just becomes like a normal job - albeit a very strange one!”
Now, this latest role in The Addams Family has given Carrie the opportunity to play a completely different character. “Belfast will love the show,” she enthused.
“It’s crazy, it’s the Addams Family that everyone knows and loves just a few years on.
“Wednesday is now 18 years old and she has fallen in love with a normal boy in a normal family, so it is about those two families coming together - and it all going horribly wrong!”
Carrie adds she is lucky to have had the chance to perform such strong characters, “Sometimes I have no idea where I get the confidence from, anyone who knows me would tell you that I am actually a very nervous person!
“It’s funny though as when I am in a show like The Addams Family or Les Misérables I am hiding behind a strong character, and I have no problems whatsoever.
“However, if you ask me to go out on stage and sing a song as myself - I will panick about it for around six months beforehand!
“My brother Tom is exactly the same, he hates doing stuff on his own without the other boys! He feels more comfortable when the rest of the guys are there as then the pressure is split four ways. We’re just as bad as each other,” Carrie jokes.
The star, who has been to Belfast before (she interviewed director James Cameron here and paid a visit to the Titanic Museum) says she’s looking forward to coming back. “I absolutely loved Belfast and can’t wait to just enjoy getting lost in it again,” she smiled.
Carrie, whose first book ‘All I Know Now: Wonderings and Reflections on Growing Up Gracefully’ is based on her blog of the same name, also boasts a fantastic literary career most lifelong authors would be proud of.
Her debut was a number one Sunday Times bestseller and remained in the top 10 list for a staggering seven weeks.
Since then, Carrie has published two novels, ‘On The Other Side’ and ‘All That She Can See.’
Carrie exclaimed, “To have ‘All I Know Now’ be a Times Bestseller and remain in the top 10 for seven weeks was just a ridiculous experience!
“It has always been a dream of mine to have a book published, but then when it got to number one I just could not even believe it.
“That was beyond anything I ever could have imagined.”
Carrie will be signing copies of her new book in Belfast at 4pm on Monday, October 2 at Eason, Donegall Place.
You can see Carrie perform as Wednesday in The Addams Family at the Grand Opera House in Belfast from Tuesday, October 3 until Saturday, October 7.
You can visit goh.co.uk/addamsfamily for more information, including how to book tickets.