IT all began when Danny Kirrane’s grandma spotted an advert in the Examiner.
Unbeknown to the Oakes teenager, his gran was to go and do something that would change his life completely.
The pensioner entered her grandson into the National Youth Theatre auditions.
And ever since the former Greenhead College student bagged a spot with the theatre group, he’s never looked back.
Danny, now 26, has played parts in hit TV shows The Inbetweeners, Skins, Casualty, Doctors, Hustle and Trinity.
But he is most famous for the Visa World Cup 2010 advert ‘football evolution’ in which he plays an average Joe who gets up off the sofa, runs all the way to South Africa and scores the perfect goal for England.
Danny told the Examiner his next stop is New York. He and the rest of the cast of sell-out show Jerusalem are performing on Broadway.
The former Salendine Nook High School pupil said: “It all started when my gran saw the advert in the Examiner.
“At that time I was at college and it completely changed my life.
“I was going to go on to become a physics teacher – not that there’s anything wrong with being a physics teacher.
“But I never thought I would become an actor.”
Danny, who has two sisters – Megan and Louise – had only ever acted in a couple of Greenhead College productions.
“When my gran told me about the auditions I didn’t want to go,’’ he said. “I was so nervous about it but it turned out to be the best decision I ever made.
“The NYT gave me the confidence to open up as an actor and taught me to work with other people.
“It didn’t matter where or from what background I was from.”
Danny’s dad, Mark, who works for the probation service, and mum, Kay, a social worker, still live in the Huddersfield area.
Danny now lives in London, but is returning home to see family at Christmas – and is especially keen to see his one-year-old niece, Millie-Grace Samuels.
He said: “London is so fast-paced compared to Huddersfield but it’s a great place to live when you’re an actor.
“Most of the auditions, castings and shows are here, but I still come up to Huddersfield all the time.”
The National Youth Theatre is coming to Leeds and Manchester to recruit for next year’s company, offering young people across Yorkshire the chance to follow in the footsteps of not just Danny, but Daniel Craig, Matt Smith, Orlando Bloom, Matt Lucas and Catherine Tate – who all trod the boards with the NYT.
The closing date for applications is January 7 and is open to anyone who will be aged between 14 and 21 on August 1, 2011.
For more information and to apply online, visit www.ideastap.com/nytapply
Watch Danny star in the Visa Football Evolution advert by visiting www.youtube.com/watch?v=qOJFt2hPv_Q