The Alina Pop actress left her native Romania five years ago
Coronation Street star Ruxandra Porojnicu has spoken about her decision to move to the UK from Romania, explaining it was the only way to make it big as an actress.
The 27 year old, who plays Alina Pop in the ITV soap, was just 22 when she left her home city of Bucharest for London.
Ruxandra was inspired to move away after spending time in America on a work travel programme whilst at University, and experiencing a different way of life.
She reveals: “I had a degree in acting and puppetry from the University in Bucharest and had some theatre credits to my name, but in the UK, I had to start all over again.
“I got a job at Pizza Express and took acting classes in London, and slowly started to take jobs as an extra and doing modelling - sometimes for free, just to build a portfolio.
“I got signed to an agency - it was more for commercials, but they had an acting department. I got called for an audition to play Alina, and it all happened pretty fast.”
She adds, “It was daunting to move to London, but I grew up with that American way of thinking that if you dream big and work hard, you’re going to make it happen.
“I knew in London that I would get money, experience, and meet people from different places.
"There are so many opportunities, so for me, it was really worth it. I love my country, but there aren’t so many opportunities there.”
Arriving in Weatherfield
Fictional Alina arrived in Weatherfield in 2019 and struck up a friendship with Seb Franklin, who discovered the pretty nail technician was the victim of a human trafficking ring.
When the trafficking was exposed, Alina left the cobbles and was supported by The Salvation Army.
She returned the following year and got a job at Underworld, and is currently at the centre of a big storyline in which her character has fallen for family man, Tyrone Dobbs, who is in a long-term relationship with Fiz Brown.
Falling for Tyrone
The couple have shared a few ‘moments’ and next week Tyrone will leave his partner stunned by admitting that he has fallen for their younger neighbour.
Ruxandra says she can understand why Alina has fallen for Tyrone, saying that her character is attracted to his sense of humour and the fact that he is a ‘protective figure’ in her life.
But she admits she’s unsure whether the pair have a future together.
“I think they are a good match, because they are both good people and care about each other’s happiness,” she tells us.
“But on the other hand, Alina is very inexperienced when it comes to relationships and this might be a bit tricky because Tyrone is a family man and Alina could potentially become a step mother.
“It might be a bit overwhelming for her.”
Coronation Street airs on Mondays and Wednesdays 7.30pm and 8.30pm with an hour long episode at 7.30 on Fridays on ITV - see our TV Guide for full listings.
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