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Susan McFadden

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Susan McFadden
Sosaidh Nic Pháidín
Susan McFadden at Macquarie Shopping Centre, Sydney, in August 2012
Susan McFadden at Macquarie Shopping Centre, Sydney, in August 2012
Background information
Born (1983-02-08) 8 February 1983 (age 41)
Dublin, Ireland
OriginArtane, Dublin
Occupation(s)Singer, actress
Years active2007–present
LabelsCeltic Collections, Manhattan

Susan McFadden (born 8 February 1983) is an Irish actress and singer. She is best known for playing the roles of Sandy in Grease and Elle Woods in Legally Blonde the Musical in London's West End and being a member of Celtic Woman from 2012 to 2018.

Early life[edit]

Susan McFadden was born in Dublin, Ireland, in 1983, to parents Mairead and Brendan. She is the younger sister of former Westlife member Brian McFadden.


McFadden is a graduate of the Billie Barry Stage School, located in Dublin. She toured with many Irish entertainers (including June Rodgers) in supporting roles.[1]

She was one of the dancers in Daniel O'Donnell's Rock & Roll Show tour and DVD. She also played the role of Kathy in an Irish production of Singing in the Rain in 2004 to much acclaim. The show played at the Olympia Theatre in Dublin and the Everyman Palace Theatre in Cork.

She was the winning contestant on the ITV reality TV show Grease Is the Word. As a result, she played the lead female role of Sandy in the West End production of Grease with Danny Bayne beginning in August 2007.[2]

In 2008, McFadden recorded two songs for the CD Act One – Songs From The Musicals Of Alexander S. Bermange, an album of 20 brand new recordings by 26 West End stars, released in November 2008 on Dress Circle Records.

She played the lead role of Milly in the 2008 UK tour of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, opposite Steven Houghton.[1]

McFadden sang with Ben Morris and Séan Carey in the final of RTÉ One's Fame: The Musical in Dublin on Sunday 13 June 2010.[3]

McFadden starred in the original West End cast of the musical Legally Blonde at the Savoy Theatre in London's West End playing Elle Woods after originating the role of Serena. Official reviews and audience reaction were extremely positive.[citation needed] Beginning on 25 October, McFadden became the alternate Elle, performing Mondays and Tuesdays. McFadden began playing the role of Elle Woods full-time beginning 10 January 2011[4] and left the role on 9 July 2011 and has been nominated for a WhatsOnStage award for "best takeover". She was subsequently replaced by former Margot and understudy Elle Carley Stenson.

Celtic Woman[edit]

On 5 January 2012, McFadden was named as a replacement for Lisa Kelly, then going on maternity leave, in the all-female ensemble Celtic Woman.[1] McFadden debuted with Celtic Woman in February at Nashville, Tennessee, for the kickoff of the "Believe" North American Tour and continued with the European, Australian, and South African Tours in 2012. After Kelly announced her departure from the group was permanent in January 2013, McFadden became a full-time member of Celtic Woman. She toured with the group for six and a half years.

On 12 August 2018, it was announced that McFadden would be taking leave from the group to have her first child.

In October 2019, Susan rejoined Celtic Woman for a few shows filling in for Mairéad Carlin while she recovered from appendicitis.

On 22 January 2020, it was announced that Susan would be rejoining Celtic Woman for six shows during the US Celebration tour, but the tour was postponed shortly after due to the coronavirus pandemic.[5][6] That tour eventually took place in the spring of 2022, and Susan fulfilled her promised six-show commitment.

She also rejoined for the recording of "Postcards from Ireland" as well as the Postcards from Ireland Tour.

Personal life[edit]

McFadden is married to Celtic Woman's former bagpiper Anthony Byrne.[7] Their first child was born November 2018. Their second child was born May 2021.[8]


With Celtic Woman
Other featured performances
  • Act One – Songs From The Musicals Of Alexander S. Bermange (November 2008)



  1. ^ a b c "Celtic -". celticwoman.com. Retrieved 14 April 2019.
  2. ^ BWW News Desk. "CELTIC WOMAN Announces Newest Member, Susan McFadden & New Tour". BroadwayWorld.com. Retrieved 15 March 2020.
  3. ^ Murphy, Claire (12 June 2010). "Final showdown on road to Fame". Evening Herald. Retrieved 13 June 2010.
  4. ^ London's Legally Blonde The Musical Will Welcome New Elle Woods in January Archived 5 November 2013 at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ "Original Celtic Woman Star Returns". www.celticwoman.com. Celtic Woman. Retrieved 17 February 2020.
  6. ^ "Tour Rescheduling Announcement 2020". www.celticwoman.com. Celtic Woman. Retrieved 18 March 2020.
  7. ^ "Pics/Videos from Sue and Anto's Wedding". celticwomanforum.com. Retrieved 20 August 2017.
  8. ^ "Virgin Ireland Player".

External links[edit]