An actress is set to become a star on screen as well as stage as she makes her first TV appearance this week.
Melissa Fleming, who comes from Boldon Colliery, is set to appear in the BBC show Doctors, which is a drama series set in a busy Midlands practice.
The show, which is set to air tomorrow at 1.45pm, will be the 23-year-old’s first appearance on television and it has brought delight to her family.
Proud mum Maureen said her daughter was offered the role before she had even graduated from London’s Mount View Academy of Theatre Arts.
“This is the first big break she has had since she graduated in musical theatre,” she said. “She was offered the part back in July and had to go to Birmingham for a couple of weeks to film it.
“She said she just thoroughly enjoyed herself and I think that is so lovely. “She even got a personal letter from the BBC thanking her for her contribution, so she is doing really well.”
The rising star has enjoyed a fantastic few months in showbusiness.
The part in Doctors comes soon after Melissa enjoyed a starring role in the festive theatre show Cinderella which was staged at the Kings Lynn Corn Exchange, in Norfolk last December.
Melissa, who now lives in London, played the part of Cinderella along side EastEnders actor Matt Lapinskas who was starring as Prince Charming.
But that’s not the end to Melissa’s great run. A superb 2016 also saw her chosen to represent London’s Mount View Academy of Theatre Arts in the Spotlight Prize.
The top honour involves theatre schools putting forward their best student to perform at a showcase in front of industry professionals, including actors, directors, producers, and casting directors.
Melissa had to perform a monologue and star in a short film to demonstrate her screen acting.
For being nominated, she’ll be listed on Spotlight’s casting website for a year, something people usually have to pay for.
She said her dream was to be on the West End and the honour had opened doors to film and television.
And in another twist, Melissa’s big television moment comes just days after her sister Emilie, 24, also appeared in a TV hospital drama. She starred in an episode of BBC One’s Holby City as a Geordie girl rushed into the hospital by her father after an allergic reaction.
She has also enjoyed her own previous success. In 2010, she reached the live finals of BBC talent contest Over The Rainbow, which saw Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber searching for a Dorothy for his production of The Wizard of Oz.