Coronation Street’s unlucky-in-love hairdresser Maria Connor is in line for yet more heartbreak – and Samia Ghadie, who plays her, is just grateful that her own love life is far happier.
Samia says she is relieved she shares no similarities with Maria, who is set to discover that her partner Marcus Dent has been having an affair with Todd Grimshaw.
Samia met her boyfriend, French skater Sylvain Longchambon, in 2013, when they were paired together on Dancing On Ice.
“I am so glad I met Sylvain and I think things happen for a reason. I am very happy,” she says.
But Maria’s world is about to be shattered.
“When she discovers that Marcus has been seeing Todd, she is completely devastated,” Samia told the Daily Express. “She feels embarrassed, humiliated and stupid. It is a complete bolt from the blue for Maria.
“She did have her reservations initially when Marcus didn’t tell his gay friends he was straight, but since then, she has put her trust in him.”
Over the next few weeks, Coronation Street viewers will be left on tenterhooks as they watch Maria’s distress unravel and Samia admits that she has enjoyed getting stuck into the gritty storyline.
“Maria actually beats Marcus up,” she reveals. “But I was the one who ended up with bruises! Charlie [Condous, who plays Marcus] was all padded up but I forgot to take my watch off when we filmed and I got a massive bruise on my hand!”
This is the lowest point ever for Maria and, over the next few weeks, she starts to unravel.
“I have always thought that Maria was making a mistake going out with Marcus,” continues Samia. “Whenever I get stopped in the street, people are very nice to me. I do think everyone will feel sorry for poor Maria.”
Now 31, Samia says she still loves working on Coronation Street as much as she did on her very first day back in 2000.
“I have grown up on the set. But I absolutely love being in Corrie. Some of us, like Jane Danson [Leanne], have known each other since we were teenagers and we are best mates out of work.”
And Samia, who is mum to four-year-old Freya, doesn’t have plans to move on any time soon.
“Dancing On Ice was the first thing I had done other than Corrie,” she explains. “It was refreshing but I missed the Street. I just want to concentrate on Corrie and do my best with this storyline.”