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Derry Girls star reveals all about playing a teenager in her 30s

Can you imagine pretending to be 17 again?

derry girls leah
Emmy Griffiths
TV & Film Editor
9 April 2019
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Although the Derry Girls cast look like they should be in sixth form, most of the cast are actually in their 20s and 30s, including the head girl who is often the bane of the gang's life, Jenny. Leah O'Rourke, who plays the irritating Jenny brilliantly, opened up about going back to wearing a school uniform in her 30s. Chatting to HELLO!, she said: "It's weird because I work part time in a school, so I always feel like I have a very young mentality and I think everyone sees that about themselves… I'm usually cast younger - it was great fun to go back to school and put on the uniform and all that - it just takes you completely back. Even things like going and getting a coffee between takes, you are like, 'Am I allowed?' It instantly makes you feel younger than the crew members!"

derry girls 1© Photo: Channel 4

Leah opened up about playing a teenager

The star added that the Derry Girls' experience at Catholic school was very similar to her own, and admitted she thought it might have helped her win the role. She said: "I went to an all-girls catholic school and we had two nuns working in it - one nun was very very scary and was intimidating and had some qualities of Sister Michael. It was so similar. I think when I first got the script I really related to it and I found that probably helped me in the audition because I felt I had experienced something similar."

READ: Derry Girls star Nicola Coughlan's real age SHOCKS fans

The 30-year-old also opened up about the huge fandom surrounding the hit Channel 4 comedy, and revealed that she enjoys people chatting to her about the show. "I think I have really nice fans," she explained. "I don't get recognised too much, I think some of the main girls get it a lot. I get it just a really, really nice amount, but I am always very surprised when people come up to me! I was recognized for the first time in London about two weeks ago - and I am very anonymous in London, I was like, 'Oh my God, I can't believe you recognised me."

READ: The Derry Girls cast in real life: See what they look like out of character

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